SAP Reports Best Ever Year for Training and Development

Twelve Months of Sustained Investment and Innovation Having Positive Impact on Region’s ICT Industry and Job Market;
Regional Industries Benefitting from Localization of Solutions

DUBAI, United Arab EmiratesSAP today announced that it has experienced its best ever year for training and development.

SAP’s investment in identifying and supporting talent throughout the region has been significantly stepped up since the inauguration of its pioneering Training and Development Institute at Dubai Silicon Oasis by H.H Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of DSOA, in November 2012. Also present for the inauguration were Dr. Mohammed Al Zarooni, Vice-Chairman and Chief Executive Officer DSOA, and Dr. Werner Brandt, SAP Chief Financial officer and Executive Board Member.

“It has been a fantastic year for training and development at SAP, and the support DSOA has provided to the Training and Development Institute over the past twelve months is very much appreciated,” said Marita Mitschein, SAP Training & Development Institute Managing Director and Growth Plan Lead for SAP Middle East & North Africa.

“Our vision is to discover and shape the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs and to ensure they are able to make strong and lasting impressions across a wide range of industries in the region – irrespective of whether they end up working for SAP or not. Our approach to this is multifaceted in structure, world-class in outlook, and we are only just getting started.”

Designed to serve the entire MENA region through training and certifying SAP consultants, driving partner and customer co-innovation, as well as enhancing the localised SAP portfolio of solutions, the Training and Development Institute now accommodates over 40 developers, language experts and product managers.

Throughout the year, the Training and Development Institute has supported a host of initiatives.

The three-month Mawared (Young Professional) program stood out as one of the highlights. Designed for young graduates, the program includes hands-on project experience and spans everything from negotiation and communication to conflict management and “design thinking”. In addition, the initiative will offer SAP certifications at associate level in core business and industry solutions. 108 talented students graduated in 2013, and over 50 are currently undergoing training. To support the program’s growth, SAP recently signed MOUs with Oman’s Information Technology Authority (ITA) and Saudi Arabia’s Human Resources Development Fund.

In order to maximise its ability to engage with local talent, SAP has also launched the 2nd Chance Education Program, which qualifies unemployed job-seekers as SAP certified consultants and users in collaboration with selected partners from government institutions and the private sector. A partner from Saudi Arabia has already signed up, with full details of the collaboration due to be announced shortly.

More established is SAP’s world-renowned University Alliances Program, which continued to extend its influence throughout the region. 2,300 students across 47 universities are now part of the UAP and being taught by 230 specially trained instructors. UAP member schools are provided with access to the SAP Business Suite family of solutions, including SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). UAP students gain insight into how technology can empower businesses to optimize key processes, and gain hands-on experience of key technologies that enable them to add immediate value to the local job market.

Neatly complementing the UAP was a series of CodeJams and Design Thinking workshops taking place at institutions such as Higher Colleges of Technology –Dubai (HCT-Dubai) Women’s Campus, Zayed University, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Carnegie Mellon University Qatar and Qatar University. The intensive coding and networking events were specifically designed to boost knowledge and inspire creativity.

Throughout the year, the Training and Development Institute has also won acclaim for adapting SAP products for local markets, including extensive Arabization and ensuring compatibility with distinct legal requirements. Eight local products were launched in the past year for use in countries like Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE. All products were specifically designed to provide higher returns on investment through shorter implementation timeframes and out-of-the-box best practice, as well as compliance with and on-going adaptability to local laws.

Furthermore, the Training and Development Institute team delivered two rapid deployment solution packages. SAP HR Core Functions for UAE and Saudi Arabia, which are fully localised and compatible with the country’s labour laws and common practices and can be up and running in less than 12 weeks.

H.H. Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed, Dr Al Zarooni, Werner Brandt, and Marita Mitschein during the 2012 inauguration of the SAP Training & Development Institute at DSO.

About SAP
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