|The SAP Community Member Interview Series highlights key strategic topics, such as emerging technologies, learning, and other topics, and provides insights from SAP Community participants who are making a difference with their contributions (e.g., blogs, Q&A, sessions, etc.). This series provides insights into their interests and motivations which can inspire all of us.|
Success-driven technology and business professionals recognize the importance of keeping up with the rapid pace of change by making continuous learning an essential part of their MO (mode of operation).
As we all know, the pandemic has ushered in a new reality.
For employees and consultants, hands-on learning represents a rewarding experience, and with increased knowledge, projects can realize better outcomes.
For employers, given the new realities of virtual and hybrid work environments along with the “Great Resignation,” continuous learning can lead to greater job satisfaction, employee retention, and help address IT and related skill gaps, as well as future trends.
Clearly, upskilling is a key ingredient for a workforce to achieve success.
For Lingaiah Vanam, a leading SAP Community contributor, Digital Supply Chain consultant, and Application Development Associate Manager at Accenture, he has taken continuous learning to a new level with 300+ licenses and certificates.
It was a lot of fun to catch-up with Lingaigh from his home office in Hyderabad, Telangana, India.
Lena Stodal (LS): Hi Lingaiah! You have a master’s degree in Biotechnology from Periyar University and have spent your career in information technology, where you are now an Application Development Associate Manager at Accenture. What sparked your career shift?
Lingaiah Vanam (LV): Hi Lena! Yes, I am very interested in information technology! I chose SAP as the right platform to start my career, because every project is a unique experience.
In my current role, I’m leading a team to support SAP Advanced Planning and Optimization (APO) and SAP Integrated Business Planning (IBP) applications for one of the biggest multinational pharmaceutical companies.
LS: Within the community, continuous learning is always encouraged. You have taken this concept to an amazing level with 300+ certifications and licenses ranging from SAP Integrated Business Planning to Bots to Cybersecurity. What inspires you to acquire knowledge around so many interesting topics?
LV: I am keen to learn new technologies and experiential learning knowledge in my projects to get better outcomes. Many times, I have failed, but learning through failure is a rewarding experience.
I would recommend this approach to my project members and colleagues.
Technology changes are very common in today’s age. I believe that in order to stay current, acquiring knowledge is very crucial to both individuals and organizations. Staying up-to-date on the everchanging tactics keeps you in check and helps you move forward in your career.
LS: How did you get involved in the SAP Community?
LV: I joined the SAP Community (then the SAP Community Network) on 6th January 2012. I realized that I wanted to learn and share the knowledge with others. So, I figured the SAP Community would be the right platform, and started answering questions, posting blogs on various SAP applications, and more.
Eventually, it became a habit to learn something new every day along with my regular job responsibilities.
LS: Thank you for being a top community contributor. With ~100 Community Badges earned since 2013, you have set a wonderful example of consistency. Your recognition includes…
- Grand Master Solver – Providing tireless answers to community members’ questions
- Master Blogger – Publishing great blog posts that draw positive feedback from the community
- Ripple Effect – Sharing insights. When you speak, people listen!
As time is a scarce commodity to all of us, what are a few tips to encourage community member’s participation?
LV: I would suggest having a dedicated time slot for learning every day. Once you gain the knowledge, simplify the content and share it as a blog post so that others can benefit.
Explore the SAP Community on new releases and summary blog posts to get the required information to support projects.
Register for SAP events and webinars to learn new innovations from SAP on various applications. The below links might help to get started!
LS: In your acclaimed blog, “SAP IBP Order Based Integration Architecture Real Time Integration (RTI)” with over 35,500 views, you share the importance of “eliminating the silos in the planning process.” In some ways, how has the pandemic helped organizations become stronger in their collaboration?
LV: Eliminating silos or cross-functional alignment is one of the key elements for successful supply planning process. The COVID-19 pandemic helped organizations to review their current supply chain process and identify any improvements such as people, process, or technology.
LS: Clearly the global economy is dependent on Digital Supply Chains which can make front page news. The reasons include a wide range of current and future disruptions. How do you begin the discussion to discover and prepare to address these issues (e.g., Design Thinking, Workshops, etc.)?
LV: Supply chain disruptions will be common in the future.
To overcome those challenges, organizations need to focus on incorporating risk management and proactive contingency plans, investing in the right technology to quickly adapt to changes, developing supply chain disruption strategies, collaborating between different departments to take the right decisions on time and conducting workshops to get the feedback from various channels, employees, customers, and suppliers.
LS: What motivates you to use new technologies to enhance peoples’ lives, and help create a better world for the next generation?
LV: Technology plays a very important role in society today. I will focus on supply chain technology trends which enhance people’s lives directly or indirectly through new innovations.
- Digitalization (AI/ML, IoT, RPA, AR & Cloud Platforms) of supply chain eliminating manual tasks, automating processes.
- Supply chain analytics provide real time data analysis for faster decision making.
- Agile supply chains to adapt to new changes and respond to market disruptions.
- Sustainable & Green supply chains integrating sustainable environmental processes into traditional supply chains.
- Customer experience to improve the product features and quality.