Sap FICO and CAs


Sheli Sehrawat (SAP Business Consultant)     27 September 2011

Sheli Sehrawat
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SAP

SAP (Systems, Applications, and Products in Data Processing) is a German company found in 1972 which, apart from a list of useful software, has developed an integrated ERP software package useful for all kind of business processes including planning, budgeting, finance & accounting, costing, human resource, treasury, internal/external reporting. SAP ERP (Currently ECC 6.0 version) consists of several modules (around 15) supporting different kind of business processes.

SAP for a CA

Being involved with financial accounting, taxation, statutory reporting, costing etc. the most relevant modules for a CA in SAP are SAP FI (Financial Accounting) and SAP CO (Controlling/Management Accounting). One can choose to be an SAP Consultant or to be into Core-finance team of an organisation having SAP ERP or to be an SAP Auditor.

Within SAP FI we have several sub-modules namely General Ledger, Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, Asset Accounting, Treasury (now a separate module), Taxation, Banking. Therefore, SAP FI takes care of accounting, yearend adjustments, preparation of financial statements, tax computations etc. A new patch provided by SAP also supports XBRL*, useful for new reporting norms.

SAP CO takes care of all the costing related issues as well as internal/management reporting. Among others, it covers Budgeting, Internal Orders, Cost sheet, Inventory Control, Cost Centres, Profit Centres, Cost Allocation, ABC (Activity Based Costing).

 

Top 4 Institutes providing SAP certification are:

·         SIEMENS IT SOLUTIONS AND SERVICES PVT. LTD (now ATOS)

·         NIIT

·         Lithan Genovate

·         Enovations System Intelligence Private Limited.

Visit http://www.sap.com/asia/services/education/centres/partners.epx for more details of Institutions

Benefits:

For a CA:

Given the fact that CAs are least technical, a course in SAP would arm them with a unique skill-set of core financial knowledge plus an understanding of how ERP system works and behaves for different financial scenarios. It also enables CAs to customise the ERP software to best suit a client’s business processes. Having said so, a CA is not necessarily required to be SAP certified.

IT companies hire fresh CAs and provide them internal SAP FI&CO training. The role of a CA in an IT company is to understand client’s business processes and the flow of information and then design the ERP software (blueprinting) which in turn enables engineers to customise the standard SAP ERP as per the client requirement. CAs are responsible to implement an ERP best suited for the client’s business model.

CAs are also involved in functional configuration (non-technical), testing of the software on the predetermined set of regression/non-regression scenarios; sometimes they are a part of pre-sales team pitching for the best ERP model for the organisation structure of a prospective client.

For a Non-CA:

Yes SAP certification would be a path-breaker for a Non-CA. Not being a Chartered Accountant, the certification would attract the faith of IT companies involved in SAP consultancy or any free-lancing SAP consultant. However, recruitment of such candidate will be only on the basis of the SAP certification and the level of working knowledge he/she has in finance.

 

Scope:

Being the world leader in ERP, SAP captures more than 60% of the ERP market. There are 35000+ SAP ERP Customers around the world.

Every 2-3 years SAP introduces a new version of ERP and is loved by corporates for the added functionalities it offers as compared to other ERP software packages. Keeping in view the cost involved in implementation and the functionality of the SAP ERP, usually organisations with turnover of $100m or more are better suited for implementing it.

An SAP consultant (IT Company)’s relation with the client implementing SAP ERP doesn’t end on implementation of the ERP. Consultants are needed for supporting ERP users working in the client organisation; and the service agreement can go on forever.

In a nutshell, a candidate having working and customising knowledge of SAP cannot go jobless ever (I am being highly optimistic here). J

 

Cost & Duration

For a CA:

Cost                Among other post-qualification courses, ICAI provides SAP ERP course “ERP Courses on SAP FA & MA Module, Microsoft Dynamics NAV” at a discounted fee of Rs. 96,000/-.

Duration         The duration of the course is 200 Hours over a period of 4 months.

                        (For details go to http://www.icai.org/post.html?post_id=2439)

For a Non-CA:

In most of the institutes, you have 2 options to take up the course

a) Full Time (class room training)

b) Online Training (web based)

Cost:               For SAP FI classroom training: around Rs. 2,75,000 (Rs. 2,50,000 is the training fees and Rs. 25,000 for Certification). For SAP FICO integrated course: more than 3.5 Lakhs

For SAP FI OLT (Online Training): Around Rs. 1,60,000/-. You can appear at most three times paying 25,000/30,000 each time.

Apart from authorised institutes, there are numerous small unauthorised institutes in all the major cities across India which offer SAP training at Rs. 10-30K per module.

You need to have 70% (kindly confirm with authorised institute as well) marks in the Certification exam. But there is no placement guarantee even after Certification from these institutes with only 1/4 Certified consultants getting placed.


Duration:                   Classroom training: 20 days + certification: 1-2 Months

OLT (Online Training): 25 Days – 5 Months in total

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

*XBRL:

https://www.in.kpmg.com/SecureData/aci/Files/Knowledge-Update-May2011.pdf :------

MCA vide circular dated 31 March 2011 has mandated the following class of companies to file balance sheet and profit and loss account for the year 2010-11 onwards by using XBRL  (eXtensible Business Reporting Language) taxonomy:

1.      Companies listed in India and their subsidiaries, including overseas subsidiaries

2.      Companies having a paid up capital of INR 5 crore and above or a turnover of INR 100 crore or above.

The XBRL taxonomy has been developed as per existing Schedule VI and the accounting standards notified under the Companies (Accounting Standards) Rules, 2006.

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Vikash Kumar (Manager Accounts (CA. Final))     27 September 2011

Vikash Kumar
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Thanks For this information.

As ICAI's SAP training is on hold, can you please suggest me best training istitute in delhi? is the value of online training same as face to face training?
 

 

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Sheli Sehrawat (SAP Business Consultant)     27 September 2011

Sheli Sehrawat
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Originally posted by : Vikash Kumar

Thanks For this information.

As ICAI's SAP training is on hold, can you please suggest me best training istitute in delhi? is the value of online training same as face to face training?
 

 

 Hi Vikash,

You have to be really careful while choosing the institute to learn SAP. The most important thing to be considered is the time of hands on training after conceptual learning. Further, you can choose between those institutes who are SAP authorised and would give you full fledged training and certification at a cost of around 2.75 Lakhs and those institutes who will charge around Rs.30,000-35,000 for the theoritical and hands on training but wouldn't provide you a certification. You can go to http://www.sap.com/asia/services/education/centres/partners.epx and find out authorised institutes. Though i dont have the list of unauthorised institutes, you can find them on Google.

If you need anymore clarification, feel free to contact me. 

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vipul (chief Accountant)     27 September 2011

vipul
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Thanks for the Info. , can we get some E- Books on SAP FICO.

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Sheli Sehrawat (SAP Business Consultant)     27 September 2011

Sheli Sehrawat
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Hi Vipul

 

There is a lot of training material available on the net. There are a lot of forums also on the internet. Further, I can also provide you training material but because of the vastness of SAP, I first need to know what is your level of knowledge in SAP FICO (Trained/Functional/End User/New Learner) and which industry you want the material for.

 

Thanks & Regards'

CA Sheli Sehrawat

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Vivek (CA )     27 September 2011

Vivek
CA  
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Please see my post in the "Career" section on the similar subject.

Souvik Kumar Ghosh (CA Final)     27 September 2011

Souvik Kumar Ghosh
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Dear Sheli,

I am a new learner of SAP. Please provide me  some training materials in relation to a manufacturing entity.

Regards,

Souvik

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Sourav Banerjee MA,MSW (Shabda Bramha)     27 September 2011

Sourav Banerjee MA,MSW
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Dear Ms. Sehrawat,

First of all, thank you for sharing such valuable information with adequate details.

I'd like to request you to furnish information on the relevant modules of SAP that may come handy for those pursuing CS only.

Also, I'd most humbly invite you to my profile and please suggest how ( if at all) can SAP help me after finishing my CS.

Regards. 

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* Krishna * (CA Student)     28 September 2011

* Krishna *
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Hi Sheli:


Thanks for such a detailed information on the SAP-FICO Module. Many of my friends are working in FICO area with CA and with MBA, who are earning nearly 10Lacs p.a. But the problem here is do the IT Companies or others who have implemented the SAP ERP will take students who don't have any experience, if they took coaching from un-certified institutes.

 

I seen many of the organisations are asking for experience. I hardly seen the companies recruiting freshers of un-certified institutes. Is it so in the present market? What's your stand on this? Say, for example, is TCS recruiting Fresher CA's (who have some SAP Knowledge already) and giving any sort of FICO internal training for those who are interested? How many recruitments were going as per your knowledge in TCS? However, I do agree that SAP with CA is very best combination than other. Please throw a light on above aspects.

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Sheli Sehrawat (SAP Business Consultant)     28 September 2011

Sheli Sehrawat
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Hi Krishna....Very good afternoon

Further to the discussion, there are two scenarios : one is if someone is a CA...I would say that there are fair chances of off-campus recruitment if you approach HR directly (I have a colleague who is hired this way) or you have somebody already working in the org with some influential capacity. No need to even have a certification or training in ERP. Company will itself give you internal training before allocating you any kind of work in ERP. If you know what ERP is and what it does, you are on-board. Experience of any kind in any org with ERP would be an added advantage.

 

Secondly...if someone is not a CA, as i said in my post, in the absense of the CA/MBA degree the only and only reason for recruitment is distinguished knowledge of ERP. So here, Certification is a must. SAP learning from unauthorised institutes will not help a fresher in this case. He/she should have some ERP working experience in an organisation. I have a friend who, after clearing his PCC, got certification in SAP and is working in GENPACT at 5.5Lakhs PA. He didn't even complete his CA. He is currently in Spain which is his FIRST PROJECT.

 

Regarding the best combination, I don't say that it is the best....but yes it is ONE of the best combinations just like Investment Banking/ Corporate Finance. It not only uses your diversified knowledge of Accounts/Cost/DT/IDT but also pays you well without working like dogs (unlike working in big4s). Further, you can choose to go into managerial role after 4-5 years or you can be a trainer or you can start your own free-lancing agency/consultancy......there are ample options. it offers you foreign visits to help explore the world's different cultures. It offes you a very professional working environment.

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