Archive for February, 2013

HANA Certification- A brief approach!

February 20th, 2013

HANA is the latest offering from the SAP and both existing and aspiring SAP Consultants are trying hard to be a Certified HANA Consultant. Like all other SAP modules, HANA certification is tough and easy depending on your level of preparation.
I had put in all the possible hours into my HANA certification preparation and scored more than 90%. The approach was simple, read everything possible on HANA. I explored all the available articles, notes, tips, and sample questions, and put in extra hours to achieve my certification.
HANA certification is a 180 minutes test and questions appear according to the following sections:

·         Business content

·         Data Modeling

·         Data Provisioning

·         Optimization

·         Reporting

·         Security and Authorization

For success you should consider both books and practical experience (especially in Data Modeling and Data Provisioning).  A good knowledge of Data Services is also necessary.
Business Content: : For this section as there are no specific chapters, you should do a general reading on SAP HANA on BW RDS, COPA RDS.
Data Modeling: Around 20%—30% certification is on Modeling, pay attention to all three forms of modeling and the steps involved. Trickiest questions are part of this section.
Data Provisioning:  Most of simple questions are in this section. Read all the different available methods of provisioning (ETL via Data Services, SLT, Log Based). Pay special attention to Data Services. Also, read the pros and cons of all methods and study the data flows.  Real time replication is one of the hot topics.
Optimization: is one of the tricky part as there are no special chapters or sections in the books (HA100 & HA300) or web talking specifically on Optimization. Optimization is best practices for data Modeling, Provisioning, and Reporting. These practices are scattered around across the chapters and you have to pay special attention to them for scoring in Optimization section.
Reporting: pay attention to all the connectivity options listed (JDBC, ODBC, ODBO, MDX, BICS). Also, learn the listed functionalities of BO Explorer, Analysis, and Crystal Reports.
Security & Authorization: There are maximum 10 questions (could be less too) on Security. Study TZH300 and also concentrate on all privileges and roles available in SAP HANA.
Also refer the following links for more information on certification:

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The rise of Agile Project Techniques among the Project Managers

February 6th, 2013

Source: PMI Website

The desire for organizational agility is on the rise, according to PMI’s Pulse of the Profession.

The survey found that more and more project Managers are now using agile project techniques frequently and that number is likely to keep moving up. The survey also found that in successful organizations, 68 percent of projects meeting original goals and business intent often used agile project management.

Tips on how can an organization assess the strengths and deficiencies of its agile teams:

1. Instead of asking about one team’s remaining work at the end of an iteration, look at the amount for unfinished work for all teams in your organization. This can tell you who needs more coaching.

Graph the remaining work for each team every two weeks, for example. Can you see which teams need more help? Can you find the average slope for both successful and unsuccessful iterations? Ideally, we start at 100 percent work planned on day one, reach 50 percent in the middle and have 0 percent left at the end of the iteration.

2. Determine if all of your project teams are adding requirements. This can tell you if you are implementing the letter of agile, but not the intent. Strong agile teams will capture some competitive advantage of timely requirements, but will control scope change to not lose focus.

3. Get a pulse on impediments and retrospective actions for all teams.
This can tell you if teams are implementing continuous improvement and facing risks head on.

Asking these questions at an organizational level may not be natural at first. But when encouraged, it can reveal a new perspective on which teams are actually leveraging agile as they mature on their path to adoption.