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Get insider info on SAP SuccessFactors HCM suite for core HR and payroll, time and attendance, talent management, employee experience management, and more in this SAP blog.
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Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert
The Q1 release for SAP SuccessFactors was again a packed release with huge value to our customers. In this post, I will provide some context and visuals around the 1802 innovations in HR Core.


In the area of workflow, we have an enhancement that came in via our customer community. We now made it possible to define and trigger alerts and e-mail notifications for all MDF objects, including the custom objects.

When is this useful? Let me give an example: We have customers who have configured home office contracts as a custom object. Nice if you want to track who and when to work from home. Based on this information we can now fire an alert before the home office contract expires. This helps to pro-actively inform people (e.g. the manager) and makes sure the work is done in time.

This applies to every custom object which is defined. Here is an example for such a rule which can be defined to fire the alert:

This adds great flexibility and usability to our application. Based on the community feedback this is functionality many customers have been waiting for!


Our local product managers have updated the application so that you can benefit from predefined fields, business rules and reports to be compliant when running operations in those countries. Beyond a whole range of country specific updates to already supported countries, in this release we continued our expansion with 2 new country versions for Kuwait and Namibia.

And to run payroll in line with country regulations our local product managers now released EC Payroll functionality to support Hungary

Time Management

A few enhancements in this area as well. For example:

We have enabled it to add custom fields for allowance time types in the Time Sheet. Here is an example of what can be achieved now:

The mileage and the amount have been added as custom fields in this time sheet. This allows the employee to record the extra allowance, next to the time spend, so that they can get properly expensed for it.

Secondly, we have made it possible that recorded breaks in the time sheet do not need to overlap anymore with working time. Before this enhancement breaks were only allowed to be overlapping with an attendance time: Working time 08:00 – 16:30; Break 12:00 – 12:45. Now it is possible to record: Working time 08:00 – 12:00; Break: 12:00 – 12:45; Working time 12:45 – 16:30
And thirdly we have made it possible to for the time administrator make changes to the Time Account Payout. See the following screenshot:

And when clicking on Edit:

As you can see the defaulted values can now be adjusted to make the payout in line with earlier discussions and/or agreements.

And the last item for Time Management allows more role based permission flexibility for time objects. Managers can now have a permission role that only allows to view employee time sheets, but not to edit them. in this case it will also only display the specific time accounts and their details in the Time Administration Workbench, but does not allow users to edit or create records. Very powerful improvement!

For more detailed information on the time management functionality delivered in Q1, please check this post.

Employee Central Payroll

For Employee Central Payroll we have enhanced capabilities to view and execute off-cycle payrolls directly from the Payroll Control Center. We have added a new central overview page provides full transparency in all off-cycle payroll processing:

And we have added functionality to capture and work with notifications via a Notifications Pane. This provides a list of employees that have record changes that might require off-cycle payroll run. And the payroll process manager can create off-cycle requests directly from the Notifications panel. See the following screenshot:

The Notifications Pane is kind of a work list for the payroll administrator. As you can see this provides a work list which highlights employees with off-cycle relevant record changes, and it provides the ability to immediately run an off-cycle. This is particularly useful when employee have requested to provide vacation pay in advance.

New mash-up configurator

As part of our overall payroll offering we provide tooling to embed infotypes into Employee Central by means of so called: mash-ups. Basically, a mash-up is a web version of an infotype framed into Employee Central to avoid payroll staff and managers from flip flopping between applications and to provide one seamless process for them.

In this release, we provide a new user-friendly UI for configuring these mash-ups. Based on the customer’s payroll installation we provide the flexibility to configure custom sets of mash-ups, which can be presented to support the payroll administrators in their end-to-end processing.

In the below screenshot, you see how for example for a pay statement you can select which object will be called for the visualization of the portlet:

Next to the portlet visualization we can also visualize and embed task related information. In the following screenshot, you see how the task and task sequence can easily be configured in Employee Central.

This adds nicely to the end-to-end experience we provide across Employee Central and Employee Central Payroll. both in terms of UX as well as from a process perspective. Personally, I think that this is the main driver why our Employee Central Payroll installed based doubled in the previous year.

Job Profile Builder

We have delivered an enhancement to our Competency Framework. A new attribute has been added to the competency content type: competency type. Competency types are customer-defined labels that can be assigned to a competency. Some examples of competency types could be “Functional”, “Technical”, “Industry”, etc.

End-to-end processing between EC and SAP HCM

Many of our customers run EC on top of their on-premise SAP HCM payroll. The data between these two applications is being kept in synch via the powerful Data Replication. When data records are purged in EC this also means that they must be purged in SAP HCM. To enable this, we are now using Data Retention Management in SAP SuccessFactors to trigger a purge of the corresponding entries in the Employee Central Data Replication Monitor. This will trigger the purge in SAP HCM as well.

This functionality also includes purging the associated notifications, confirmations, and error messages. And to ensure the records remain completely in sync we have provided functionality which allows that if the employee's data is purged completely all the records related to employee master data, employee organizational assignments, or employee time data are purged for the corresponding employee.

However, if only one of the employee's employments is purged, only records related to employee time data are purged. In this case records related to employee master data or employee organizational assignments are not purged.

Secondly, we released important functionality to support cases where customers use a combination of EC with on-premise SAP HCM time management. We now provide functionality to keep work schedules in synch between EC and SAP HCM. This new program allows to migrate and synchronize work schedules from SAP HCM to Employee Central. For these employees, the work schedules can be transferred from SAP HCM into the Job Information section in Employee Central.

This means that these work schedules can be used when employee time data is replicated back to ERP. This unique in our approach to enable end-to-end processing beyond just our cloud applications, and saves customers a lot of valuable time.

Employee Central Service Center

One enhancement where many customers have been waiting for is direct access to the ‘Ask HR’ page from external applications. Before the employee had to jump from the SuccessFactors landing page into the HR helpdesk to find relevant policy information or to create a ticket. This link to the ‘Ask HR’ page can now be embedded in any other (portal) application. This provides huge access and usability improvements for our customers.

Secondly, we now allow to bookmark or save the applied filters based on Status and Service Category of the tickets. Based on the employee preferences the tickets are now displayed appropriately.

And thirdly we have released the Ask HR page in three more languages: Greek, Czech, and Turkish.

Check out other new features across our HCM suite

Learn about other new features and enhancements across the full SAP SuccessFactors HCM Suite by reading our Q1 2018 Release Highlights document, checking the Q4 blog, or by viewing our Q1 2018 release video on YouTube.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Best regards,

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