Back when I began my SAP SD career, Sales and Distribution (SD), Materials Management (MM), Production Planning (PP), and FICO (Finance and Controlling) were referred to as modules. At some point, this changed, and they were called functional areas, but they were still easily identifiable as SD, MM, etc., at SAP conferences, on the ASUG website, and so on.Then one day I pulled up SAP’s training website - and I didn’t see anything about SD per se.Where had it gone? It looked like SD had seemingly disappeared among other abbreviations like APO, SRM, CRM – and who was this BOBJ guy, anyway? I no longer knew where (or if) I fit in.
Flash forward several years. My then manager is sending me to an SAP SCM conference. SCM? Supply Chain Management? I peruse the conference website for something – anything – that says “SD”. Nothing jumps out at me. I go to the conference and spend most of my time wandering the vendor booths, collecting logo-stamped squishy balls, flash drives, and pens, and then wanting to use said pens as weapons to ward off the aggressive badge scanners.
Flash forward to today
A couple of months ago at the onset of a new ongoing Value optimization® (oVo®) project, I was asked by members of our client’s customer service team what SD had to do with it, and why they had to attend all the inventory optimization and production planning sessions. It made me smile because I had once wondered the same thing and, somewhere along the way, I made the connection. I had come to understand that the individual transactions were part of a process. It was in my best interest to learn how these steps affected the process and how the process impacted me. I wanted to be more effective in my role as a functional support analyst, and I couldn’t work in a silo anymore. Now it’s my job to help the people with whom I have the pleasure of working see the bigger picture – and where they fit in.
Working at Reveal, I enjoy what I do because I feel part of a team that is given opportunities to make a difference. Supply chain optimization involves not only teaching companies to plan and produce more efficiently but to also have the right resources in the right places and how to change – because, without the commitment to change and having the right tools, those computers on which SAP is installed could simply amount to sizable and expensive paperweights.It occurred to me that Reveal was likely a vendor at that SAP SCM conference I once begrudgingly attended. Had I not exercised some self-control, I might have stabbed my future boss with a pen. Huh ... Small world.