More about Deepak R M
Deepak is an SAP Program Management Leader and a Senior IT Executive with a solid 16+ years track record of leading some of the largest and most complex SAP transformation programs in the world. Often dubbed as "Mr. SAP" he has rescued FOUR large troubled SAP projects that were on the verge of failure. Over these years he has served his clients in the roles of SAP Program Manager, Trusted Advisor, Head of SAP Transformation for North America and also Head of IT which include Fortune 500 clients. He is the Managing Partner of iii Technologies and dedicates 100% of his time in heading SAP program for one of our signature clients. He has held several executive and leadership positions including 8 years with SAP America. He has two national awards for contributions in science and technology industry. He received a Master of Science degree in engineering from Purdue University.

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SAP Program Manager
Deepak M
Senior SAP Program Management Leader & IT Executive
Now available for new engagement
Call (609) 901-8000
email: advisor[AT]
SAP Project Manager Resume

How does an SAP Project Advisor fit in your SAP Project Organisation ?

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SAP Project Advisor (also referred to as SAP Executive Advisor) is a unqiue SAP project leadership role for medium and large size SAP implementations which provides strategic leadership, guidance and oversight into all aspects of a SAP project. First, we will discuss the role of the SAP Project Advisor and later we will review the structure of an SAP project organisation. At the end you should have a better understanding of the SAP Project Advisor role and how it fits into your project org structure.

Project Advisor
works collaboratively with the steering committee, project leadership and the PMO to ensure that project is well on track, risk are mitigated in a timely manner and high quality deliverables are produced to deliver a top quality SAP system. The SAP Project Advisor will serve as a key member of your project leadership team that consists primarily of the executive sponsor, program manager, business lead, IT lead, PMO lead and other work stream leads. The Executive Sponsor makes most of the strategic project related decisions by consulting with the advisor. Please refer to the SAP Project Leadership structure to gain understanding on how this role fits in to your project organisation.

SAP Project Leadership

The SAP Project Advisor advises the steering committee in the following activities:
  • Allocate competent leadership resources to the project.
  • Develop business transformation proposal and seek approval of project budget.
  • Prepare executive project report to steering committee on a monthly basis with progress, risks and recommendations to ensure project is on time.
  • Work with project leadership and prepare executive deliverable summary to get phase exit approval.
  • Advise steering committee to re-prioritize functionality and manage project scope to meet milestones and budget constraints.
  • Conduct Q-gate reviews including deliverable reviews, business stakeholder satisfaction review, etc and present the output to the steering committee.
  • Analyze all change request and provide alternatives to avoid or address change requests in a cost effective manner.
  • Provide input to steering committee to make Go/No-Go decisions during the project lifecycle.

Your SAP Project Advisor will be meeting with the Executive Project Sponsor to provide strategic, operational, tactical and technical input to make informed decisions. Apart from this, he will also assist the sponsor to :
  • Interview and select key project positions including the leadership, team leads, architects and Systems Integrator leaders
  • Analyze each project workstream effectiveness and make recommendations to project leadership
  • Propose resource adjustments or process improvements to address project delays
  • Address project conflicts
  • Steer the project leadership to review, analyze and resolve project level conflicts that could have material impact on the execution or delivery of the project.

The SAP Project Advisor works closely with the SAP Program Manager to ensure correct tools and eficient processes are deployed by the PMO and leads. Advisor will meet regularly with the Program Manager to:
  • Review tools, dashboards, reports and mechanisms to be deployed on the project for tracking progress.
  • Define deliverable review process and approval of deliverables to ensure all RACI members have reviewed, approved and signed off on these deliverables.
  • Setup change control board and change request evaluation process with approval criteria for CRs.
  • Define project sub-team and individual performance matrix and review these weekly reports produced by the PMO together with the program manager.
  • Review risks and issues that require leadership intervention. Propose alternatives and recommendations to mitigate these risks

PMO is responsible for tracking the progress of all deliverables, project issues/risks and activities per work plan. The PMO Lead (SAP Project Manager) reviews the progress of all these items with the Program Manager and Project Advisor. The Advisor will perform the QA check on the deliverables and activities to ensure that accurate status is reported to the project leadership and steering committee. Project Advisor will meet with the Project Manager to :
  • Review project work plan and identify slow moving work streams and deliverables that are at risk of slippage.
  • Adjust project resources or priorities to meet completion date of deliverables that are in the project critical path.
  • Review status of org change activities and ensure that business stakeholder expectations are fulfilled.
  • Review project progress report and executive presentation prior to each weekly project leadership meeting.

SAP Project Structure
Steering Committee is main govering body of the project which comprises of senior top executives of a company that are responsible for the overall growth of the organisation. Members of steering committee typically include CIO, CFO, COO, CEO and other senior vice presidents that oversee day-to-day operations of business, systems, sales and other essential corporate functions. Main role of steering committee on a SAP project is to set goals and priorities for SAP projects, resolve major conflicts, set budget and act as the ultimate authority to decide on continuation of the project. SAP project advisor, executive sponsor and senior executive from the SAP systems integrator are also part of the steering committee. They are responsible for addressing all steering committee queries that may be related to the project status, systems integrator financial deal or any other situation on the project.

Executive Sponsor role may be the CIO or at least vice-president level executive who is responsible for business or systems operations within your company. This role should have all the authority to drive the successful implementation of your project. The executive sponsor will own the business case, govern project issues and risks, control budget, ensure project funding and chair the entire project body. Executive Sponsor is accountable to the project steering committee.

SAP Program Manager is responsible for managing all project management activities and works very closely with the Project Management Office (PMO) to track project progress, budget, issues and risks. Typically the PMO lead role is filled by your SAP systems integrator and the program manager is filled by the SAP customer. Remember that this role does not have the SAP execution, functional, technical and architectural expertise to validate the implementation progress that is reported by the PMO. These validations and QA checks are done by the SAP Project Advisor.

PMO Office & PMO Lead (PMO Lead is also referred to as a Project Manager) is responsible for coordinating and tracking of project progress including the completion of activities and deliverables as per the work plan approved by the project leadership. PMO lead provides tools, templates and mechanism to allow project team to complete their activities, deliverables and escalate risks & issues that arise during implementation. PMO Lead is accountable for discussing project status, spending, issues/risks and other topics on a weekly basis to the executive sponsor, program manager and the project advisor.