Hear from a Simplilearner: Subhankar Sharma, Project Management Rockstar

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Subhankar Sharma

Last updated March 14, 2017


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Summary:

Subhankar Sharma was an SAP Consultant working on individual projects, but he wanted to start afresh as a Project & Program Manager. Learn how he achieved his goals with Simplilearn’s PgMP® certification.

What inspired you to get a professional certification in project management?

I was working on a project in Thailand for a Singaporean Company. The client was 'PTT Public Company Limited'. They are the largest Oil & Gas Company in Thailand.

I was a Project Leader and also a SAP PM & CS Consultant. I know several SAP modules so my company would come to me for most Client Project requirements. And every time this happened, I would be asked to modify my resume to meet client requirements.

Somewhere down the line, I felt I was losing my professional identity. My expertise in project management seemed to be more valuable to the company and clients than my SAP knowhow. Given my unique, multi-dimensional skill-set, I wanted to forge a new identity as generalist project manager. I wanted to carve out an identity for myself, building a brand centered on my industry experience, showcasing to potential employers what I excelled at.

I realized that a professional certification could greatly accelerate this process. That was when I decided to work toward the PMP® and PgMP® credentials.

My manager at the time was supportive of my decision, advising me of the best course of action to achieve my objectives.

Why did you choose Simplilearn?

When I was a SAP Functional Consultant, I was good at my job and enjoyed it, but I used to work individually. There was always competition to prove myself as the best person in the unit and please somebody (Project Managers, Functional Managers). But I never really learned to work as part of a team; I didn't know how to manage a team or coordinate between team members to deliver project goals.

I discussed my predicament with peers, many of whom recommended I try Simplilearn’s project management training. Simplilearn’s emphasis on hands-on, experiential learning with community integration seemed perfect for my needs.

It did not disappoint.

The certification training course gave me the opportunity to practice working in a team. By the end of training, I was functioning as a collaborative team member. It has also helped me acquire the skills I need as I work toward my ultimate career goal of becoming a Project Director.

What made you decide to take the PMI-PgMP®certification?

I believe in a methodological approach to project management. As I began to take on multiple projects, I needed formal training in managing and executing multi-project portfolios and program management. PMI-PgMP® seemed a great fit for my needs. I also knew that I could apply the skills I learned in the course to work right away because PMI® builds their course guidelines after researching industry best practices.

How was your experience with us?

I had a wonderful experience with Simplilearn because I didn’t need to take holidays or postpone any pre-scheduled meetings for the training program. I was able to learn at my own schedule and pace. I could also go back and forth on certain topics that I wanted to know more about. The faculty was also excellent, and all of the instructors had extensive experience in the Project Management Industry.

I also received active support from Simplilearn whenever I needed documents or reference material during the course. I now have a very clear idea what Program Management is and how I can apply it to my professional life. The course was well-structured, with excellent audio and video quality. Overall, I had a great time.

What challenges have you got your sights set on next?

After finishing the training program, I received the opportunity to work in Business Development along with Program Management. The work has been really challenging and rewarding. I now lead a unit at Unilever that is responsible for bringing new clients and businesses into the fold, and I use what I learned in my PgMP® course every day.

Tell us how you successfully achieved a significant milestones of your career.

While working with Unilever (Europe) as a 'Senior SAP Landscape Program Manager’, most of the project development was done from India. I used the skills I learned from my PgMP® certification program to bridge the gap between India and Europe. There were lots of problems getting all stakeholders on the same page, but I successfully managed that challenge by implementing a new ‘Convergence Program' using my Program Management skills. I implemented the new development plan world-wide and gained the acceptance of global stakeholders easily. Once that was done, they trusted me on all future deployments. I also created strategies and governance techniques for continuing this newly-developed processes, and achieved cost savings of over 900K Euros in one year’s time. 

 

PMP and PgMP are registered marks of the Project Management Institute, Inc. 

About the Author

Subhankar has 26 years of working experience including 13 years in SAP/ORACLE/INTERGRAPH/ IT Program and Project Management (PMO) & Digital Marketing. He has worked in SAP Functional Consulting in the areas of MM, QM, WMS, PM, CS, PP, PP-PI, PS, EHS, HR, LE-TRA, LE-SHP modules (including fair knowledge and experiences of ABAP and BASIS) in multi-continent, multi-country and multi-cultural environment and 8 years in Mechanical Engineering in various industries.


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