Top Four Essential Factors involved in integrating SAP SuccessFactors with SAP HCM

Category: SAP SuccessFactors Training Posted:Jul 14, 2017 By: Ashley Morrison

Top Four Essential Factors involved in integrating SAP SuccessFactors with SAP HCM

One has to be fully prepared to integrate a new solution like SAP SuccessFactors into the existing SAP HCM environment else it could be a challenging task. With user acceptance, it is generally cited as the biggest challenge to conquer but many offend that the work required in getting an HR solution up and executing it.

With cloud solutions like SAP SuccessFactors, it is common for organizations to provide approval to their HR team in implementing a brand new solution with support from IT. While it is definitely an asset for HR to be at the forefront of an implementation, we strongly encourage you to bring the IT team into the project so that you’re prepared from a technical and integration perspective. IT can add value by delivering the technical background of the existing SAP HCM investment, finally increasing your return on investment. SAP is saying “Go hybrid,” then in most cases, customers will require few important guidance on the procedure involved in meshing new cloud products with existing on-premise systems.

There are five essential characteristics involved in integrating SAP SuccessFactors with SAP HCM software or other unique technologies.

Over decades, the term “integration” has become interchangeably implemented in referring to the interfacing, unification or true integration (applications or systems designed and developed with the same architecture and standards). Integration of SAP SuccessFactors with SAP HCM is a crucial feature of linking the HR system(s) with other systems implemented in supporting Business processes outside of HR like payroll, attendance, time, environmental health and safety. While migrating to SAP SuccessFactors, there is an almost definite requirement in integrating with either the existing SAP ERP Human Capital Management (HCM) system, other parts of SAP ERP, else with one or more third-party systems. When doing so, there are multiple factors that must be considered. In this article we have depicted five such key factors, they are –

1. Business Process

This is a first factor that an organization should understand its processes both functionally and technically. When moving to the SAP-SuccessFactors Talent Hybrid integration scenario (using SAP HCM for core HR and SAP SuccessFactors for one or more talent management processes), it is very important to comprehend that how critical it is to transfer all of the data used or created in a process between two systems in real time. In some talent processes, it is an important requisite to transfer certain data (for example, transferring a compensation increase from SuccessFactors Compensation to SAP HCM for payroll), but quite often, once the employee data is loaded transferring data between SuccessFactors and SAP HCM is not mandatory. This helps to fortify that the talent hybrid integration remains far less complex and concerning when compared with full cloud HCM model implementation.

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2. System of Record

In some respects, SuccessFactors becomes the talent system of record in the Talent Hybrid model, and it is important to decide what data is going to be stored where. This is of critical importance when using an HR and talent analytics solution, like SAP SuccessFactors Workforce Analytics. If you select implementation of Success Factors Employee Central, then another important decision must be made, whether SAP HCM is replaced by Employee Central as the system of record or whether SAP HCM remains as the system of record. The choices you make will impact the integration that you need to design and build.

Designing long-term SuccessFactors strategy and Landscape Architecture

This factor helps you in understanding the potentiality of integration level to be built. Investing heavily in complex integrations for short term or purchasing the integration middleware licenses for the cheapest technology doesn’t make any sense when another option might be more cost-effective in the long term. Moving bit-by-bit to the cloud is a perfectly acceptable adoption strategy for SuccessFactors, but it may become apparent that a “big bang”- style approach would reduce complexity and cost for your integration. 

3. Middleware Technology

There is a host of middleware technology choices, that depend on which SuccessFactors applications you would be integrating and which systems would you be integrating them with and each has their share of demerits and merits.

SAP provides two technologies for integration, which can be employed with the Talent Hybrid flows that is the SAP HANA Cloud Integration (HCI) and the SAP NetWeaver Process Integration (PI). The PI is part of the base NetWeaver license and only needs the cost for the implementation of PI and the price of HCI is 7.5% of the subscription of the Success Factors. This could be expensive when using multiple applications. The Dell BoomiAtomsphere middleware platform bundled with the Employee Central subscription is available for the Employee Central. This could be expensive for the Talent Hybrid scenario.
PI cannot be utilized to integrate the Employee Central with the third-party cloud apps, such as the Workforce Software EmpCenter and the Kronos but HCI does have this capability.

4. Learn SAP’s Roadmap and Reach Out to Product Management

SAP also has a long-term roadmap for Employee Central and Talent hybrid integration that is constantly evolving to include additional content. This covers the core process integration and saves appreciable time on creating and maintaining the customer integration. Understanding the planning of SAP, would help in aligning the integration needs with the offerings of SAP and would also influence the decision made for a suitable solution.

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It is elementary to understand which components will be “switched on” when and at what point one has to switch their HR system of record from SAP ERP HCM to Employee Central. Understanding which systems should be integrated with Employee Central will influence the selection of your middleware platform. Enroll our SAP SuccessFactors to understand its core concepts and handle HR functions efficiently.

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