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The most popular question I am asked by SAP customers is “Can I keep my SAP Payroll?”

There has been quite a lot going on in the SAP HCM space, as detailed in this blog SAP HCM journey from on-premise to the cloud: A high-level outline. Although SAP has evolved many of its offerings, it seems that most customers are still keen to hold on to their SAP Payroll. So, can you keep your SAP Payroll?

My impression is that the large majority of SAP Payroll Customers do not wish to move off their On-premise Payroll for a myriad of reasons, including:

● They have made a large investment in their Payroll and do not want to lose it
● They have complex time and benefits not supported by Employee central Payroll
● They feel like at least another 10 years is a good plan for now (2030)
● They hope that that SAP is going to extend the date again
● They hope that on-prem payroll is never really going away
● They hope that Employee Central Payroll is not the only end state but rather simply another offering for customers

The easy answer to this question is: Yes, you can keep your SAP On-Premise Payroll. With the current offerings from SAP SuccessFactors, their approximately 9,000 licensed On-premise Payroll customers can have guaranteed on-premise support for their HCM system, including Payroll, through AT LEAST calendar year 2030, as detailed in my blog The Future of SAP HCM On-Premise Solutions.

SAP continues to make investments in both areas of Human Capital Management, On-premise SAP HCM and SAP SuccessFactors in the cloud, as shown below. SAP SuccessFactors does have a cloud-first strategy, but not a cloud-only strategy.

Artboard 2-39

Source: SAP © 2019


What is the Side-Car option?

The way to get this guaranteed on-premise support through at least calendar year-end 2030 is via the Side-car option. The Side-car option, launched in 2018, is designed as a bridge for those customers needing more time to start their journey to SuccessFactors. ASUG launched an educational campaign to explain the concept of the Side-car to customers; see SAP releases a new option for customers who want to keep HR on-premise.

Artboard 2 copy-16Source: SAP © 2019

There are four critical things to note for the Side-car option:
1. It is designed for continuity of a customer’s investment in SAP
2. This solution will only run on an SAP HANA database
3. HCM has to run on its own instance
4. This solution will not become available until 2023

What can I do today to get ready for the Side-car?

The second most popular question I get from SAP HCM customers is “If I want to guarantee my support until year-end 2030 and the Side-car option is not available today - what can I do today to prepare for it?”

The two key requirements to get ready for the Side-car option include:
1. Making sure your SAP HCM is on its own instance (its own box, and not an instance that has other modules on it like Finance for example)
2. Ensuring that your HCM system is running on a HANA database.

I'm curious where all customers are at in their journey.  Please feel free to chime in with comments below about where you are at in your journey from SAP On-premise HCM to SAP SuccessFactors in the Cloud.
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