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Embracing Clean Core thinking: The future role of ABAP coders

Embracing Clean Core thinking: The future role of ABAP coders

As the SAP world undergoes a transformative shift, the role of an ABAP coder is evolving significantly. What are the new skillsets demanded from ABAP coders as SAP reshapes its products? Is the traditional job description of an ABAP coder still relevant today, or does it require adaptation? How can ABAP coders ensure the relevance of their skills amidst this transformation?

From Wild West to rule-driven

Previously the ABAP role was a bit like the Wild West – solutions were sometimes implemented with a rough “get it done” attitude. Clean Core thinking represents a departure from this approach. In the past, it was common in the SAP world to build custom solutions alongside the main framework. Clean Core thinking challenges this practice, making it difficult, if not impossible, to tamper with the core. Consequently, ABAP coders now operate within stricter boundaries when developing customized solutions. They have access to tools, but the parameters of what can and cannot be used are more tightly defined. 

Responsibility over technicality

One aspect of this change is the heightened emphasis on responsibility and understanding among ABAP coders. Technical skills, while still necessary, have taken a backseat to a deeper comprehension of why certain actions are taken and what needs to be done. It’s essential for ABAP coders to be more cognizant of the right methodologies to employ. This shift brings the role closer to each individual coder, highlighting their responsibilities more clearly.

Clean Core is about manageability. When SAP systems are heavily customized, updating them becomes a challenge, leading to increased project cycles and potential issues. Clean Core simplifies this process, making it more straightforward and efficient.

The role of ABAP coders is evolving 

Let’s not forget the traditional role of ABAP coders – it hasn’t disappeared. Both old and new approaches are needed. Internally, when promoting new advancements, it is important to remember not to overshadow the value of existing expertise.

SAP might hype up all the new features, but companies often struggle to adapt, leading to extended deadlines. There’s still a need for traditional solutions, and they continue to be developed alongside the new.

In Finland, there’s a strong base of experienced ABAP professionals. Here, we appreciate the value of tried-and-tested expertise. However, there is a current gap in education for ABAP coders. We aim to address this issue at Neomore by training and educating more professionals. 

SAP coding might not be as trendy as, say, game coding, but it’s highly respected within the field. There’s a desire to learn SAP coding, despite its reputation as a “boring backend.” With the shift to cloud-based business platforms, custom coding is moving to the cloud as well. This definitely takes the profession to a new, interesting level.

There’s a clear value in producing ABAP to our customers locally. Simple tasks can be outsourced, but meaningful work is done with expertise, and that’s where our local professionals shine.

In conclusion, the role of ABAP coders is evolving, driven by SAP’s transformation towards Clean Core thinking. While the field is changing, there’s still a place for traditional skills alongside new methodologies. Local professionals have what it takes to be ready to adapt and excel in this evolving landscape.

New possibilities through transformation 

Amidst this transformation, the message is clear: keep learning, keep evolving. Don’t get stuck doing the same thing for 5 to 15 years. Be proactive. Follow SAP’s developments, ask questions, and take initiative. When faced with a task, question the usual approach. Consult colleagues, SAP materials, look for newer, better methods. Critical thinking is essential.

Last but not least: The transformation opens up new possibilities. A chance to work on more interesting projects. It’s about embracing the novelty, and finding excitement in the unknown.