This video is about becoming a functional consultant, specifically transferring in from technical into functional.
What does a functional consultant do anyway?
There are 6 key skills: Objectives, Requirements, Design, Build, Test, and Transition, and these are also the key phases of an Oracle EBS project. I transferred from technical into functional because as a technical person I was only useful for two or maybe two-and-a-half phases of this project. So I needed to make myself more valuable to the client, be more useful on the projects over the length of the project and therefore get more work with each client, so that was the reason I went to functional.
From technical skills point of view, what skills are we talking about?
We’re talking about currently SQL, PL/SQL, reports, integrations or interfaces, the setup or configuration that supports those components. We’re talking about getting better at testing. And we’re also talking about analysis. Something that’s a real key advantage as a functional person is if you can analyze records that are failing in an interface or look for data patterns by writing your own SQL and doing your own analysis, this gives you a big advantage over the functional consultant who can just run SQL or who is depending on the standard reports. You can get a lot of insight by being able to use your technical skills to write your own SQL.
From a stages point of view, how do you transfer from a technical consultant into a functional?
Transfer from Technical into Functional
- Stage 1 Technical
Stage 1 is technical, where you concentrate on delivery of excellent technical work, reports, interfaces, forms, BI, workflows, according to functional specifications provided by functional consultant
- Stage 2 Hybrid Consultant
Stage 2 is hybrid where you look at the setup and the configuration that is required for each component. If it’s an interface between an external system and Oracle, you become an expert on that setup so at that point you’re a hybrid consultant. At this point you would possibly be able to have discussions with the business about changes, regarding low level requirements relating to the design.
- Stage 3 Functional
Once you get comfortable with hybrid then you move into functional. And the way I’ve structured this is that there are three stages.
- 3.1 T1 Phase – Build and Test
When you start as a technical consultant and go into the functional role, you’re in the T1 phase so you can do build i.e., support unit testing and you’re able to do functionally support testing; unit, integration/system/user acceptance testing.
- 3.2 T2 Phase – Requirements and Design
The next phase is you start to develop your skills capturing requirements and going into proper design, designing an interface from a business point of view.
- 3.3 T3 Phase – Objectives and Transition
The final stage there is to be able to capture the objectives at the start of a project and be able to do transition at the end of the project.
You are talking about coming in with two technical skills and building up towards 6, giving you that longevity on a client so that you’re valuable from one end of a project to another.
Moving from 2 skills to 6 skills makes you three times as valuable to the client.
So that’s why I recommend transferring from technical into functional, hopefully you’ll get an idea of the steps that I took to make the transition.
If you’ve got any questions, comments, share them below. I’ll be really interested in hearing what challenges you see in becoming a functional consultant. We’ve also got some other videos on why become a functional consultant and people transferring in from the business team and from the support team.
So until next time, bye-bye.