Configuring Employee Self-Services in SAP ERP HCM

The Employee Self-Services (ESS) feature of SAP ERP HCM helps employees to access their own human resources (HR) data. In SAP Press book chapter excerpt, find out how to configure and maintain the ESS feature of SAP ERP HCM.

5 Employee Self-Services Configuration

Now let’s dive into the core configuration of the self-services. Where relevant and available, I have also provided some personal project experience, SAP Notes, and pitfalls/known issues with their solution.

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5.1 Address Book: Who’s Who

Most customers already have phone directories stored in different places, perhaps external to SAP. But did you know that SAP provides a standard phone directory known as Who’s Who?

This Who’s Who service enables two functionalities:

  • Search employees
  • Change our own data

This self-service provides consolidated data from several InfoTypes:

  • InfoType 0105—Communication, for example, the email address (subtype 0010)
  • InfoType 0032—Internal Data
  • Organizational structure data

This self-service provides an easy way to identify, for example, the superior of a colleague, find contact details such as telephone number, email address, car license plate, or add a face (a picture) to a name.

The following configuration steps help you set up the Who’s Who self-service.

5.1.1 Selection and Output

The fields provided in the SAP NetWeaver Portal screen are handled through an InfoSet. This configuration step enables you to select the selection and output fields. Assess whether the standard InfoSets are meeting the requirements; otherwise, adjust the configuration where necessary.

IMG Access Path Personnel Management • Employee Self-Service • Service Specific Settings • Address Book • Who’s Who • Who’s Who (ESS): Selection and Output
IMG Activity OHIXIAC0020
Transaction Code S_P7H_77000022
Table Name T77WWW_WHO


Figure 5.1 IMG Step: ESS Who’s Who: Maintenance Screen for Settings

Although configuration is quite easy, some limitations do apply. Note that text fields cannot be used for data selection (with the exception of the fields Organizationa Unit, Position Name, and Job Name).

Each country (also known as Molga) has its own configuration. This allows extra flexibility for national legal requirements, for example. Figure 5.1 illustrates the configuration for the United States, which is country 10.

Although part of the standard SAP reporting option, known as the SAP Queries, let’s introduce some background information on the standard InfoSet /SAPQUERY/ HR_XX_PA_ESS , which is used by default when dealing with the self-service Who’s Who. XX stands for the country number.

This InfoSet is contained in the standard cross-client global query area. It contains standard default fields for the selection and the output, as illustrated in Figure 5.2.

Figure 5.2 Standard Template InfoSet HR_XX_PA_ESS in Global Area

You can easily copy this standard InfoSet /SAPQUERY/HR_XX_PA_ESS into a customer Z _CUSTOMER_HR_01_PA_ESS.

To do so, follow these steps:

1. Go to Transaction SQ02—SAP Query: Maintain InfoSet.

2. Verify that you are in the Global Query Area. (This area is delivered by SAP and should not be touched because it is cross client.)

3. From the menu, go to Environment • Query Area. Verify that you are in the Global Query Area.

4. Copy the standard InfoSet /SAPQUERY/HR_XX_PA_ESS from the Global Query area (cross clients) to the standard area (client specific). Use the icon X, which calls the program RSAQR3TR.

5. Select Copy Global Area to Standard Area. Remove the test run.

6. Select Transport Infosets with import option Replace. Provide the standard original name, “/SAPQUERY/HR_XX_PA_ESS,” and the destination name, “Z_CUSTOMER_HR_01_PA_ESS.”

7. From the Standard Area (client specific), choose the customer InfoSet Z_CUSTOMER_ HR_01_PA_ESS. Edit the content where relevant. Save and generate.

8. Adjust the configuration by replacing the standard InfoSet /SAPQUERY/HR_XX_ PA_ESS with customer “Z_CUSTOMER_HR_01_PA_ESS.”

5.1.2 Determine the Document Type

Assuming that you have already set up the availability of the employee’s photo throughout the SAP system, you can also enable the photo for the Who’s Who service.

This step is used to determine the document type if you want to display the employee photo, which is optional.

IMG Access Path Personnel Management • Employee Self-Service • Service Specific Settings • Address Book • Who’s Who • Who’s Who (ESS): Determine Document Type
IMG Activity OHIXIAC0010
Transaction Code S_P7H_77000023

This configuration step, illustrated in Figure 5.3, is actually an excerpt from the SAP HR switches table. From this table, you set the value for the Group “ADMIN” and the semantic abbreviation (Sem. Abbr.) for the document type for (passport) “PHOTO” (the standard value) in HR.

Figure 5.3 Define Document Type

A detailed step-by-step procedure “Upload a Photo in SAP HR” for enabling pictures
can be found in the online blog entry at the following address:


5.1.3 Maintain Settings

Additional settings are provided to narrow the options enabled for the end user. These settings are similar to what was available in the ITS service PZ50 Who’s Who. It consists of configuration options enabled by a tick box. If you need to disable them, simply untick the relevant box.

IMG Access Path Personnel Management • Employee Self-Service • Service Specific Settings • Address Book • Who’s Who • Who’s Who (ESS): Maintain Settings
IMG Activity OHIXIAC0100
Transaction Code S_P7H_77000024

The following options are available, as illustrated in Figure 5.4:

  • Display employee photograph: No, if no configuration is yet in place for providing the employee’s photo.
  • Allow direct telephone dialing: No, if no dialing device or technology is currently in place at the customer or at the Employee Interaction Center (EIC).
  • Allow Access to calendar: This option enables access to the employee’s calendar, and is only relevant if the calendar is already maintained.
  • Allow Access to “Organizational ENVIRONMENT”: If you select this, beware of the SAP NetWeaver Portal response time.
  • Allow own data to be maintained: Select this option to let employees change their own data.
  • Allow own employee photograph to be maintained: For example, selecting this option to let employees change their own photo might be useful but you may wan to reconsider letting them change their own photo. For consistency and to avoid inappropriate uploads, you should set up a control procedure internally.

Figure 5.4 Maintain ESS Settings

5.1.4 Refine Employee Search

Naturally, when a company has a lot of personnel, it might be useful to narrow the scope of employees to be shown when performing a search. For example, you might refine the employee search to the active employees only. No fancy development is required to do this, you just adjust the configuration settings.

IMG Access Path Personnel Management • Employee Self-Service • Service Specific Settings • Address Book • Who’s Who • Who’s Who (ESS): Refine Employee Search
IMG Activity OHIXIAC0050
Transaction Code S_P7H_77000025

This configuration step, as illustrated in Figure 5.5, is actually another excerpt from the SAP HR switches table (T77SO). From this table, you set the value for the Group as “ESS” and the semantic abbreviation (Sem. Abbr.) value as “STAT2.” The possible return values are the following:

  • 0: Employee is not with the company.
  • 1: Employee is with the company but not active.
  • 2: Employee is with the company but retired.
  • 3: Employee is active in the company.

Figure 5.5 Refine Employee Search with STAT2 Semantic Abbreviation

It goes without saying that you can combine the values as required. For example, to only allow the display of active employees, you set the value “3” in the Value abbr. field. To allow only active and pensioners, you set the value “23” in the Value abbr. field.

5.1.5 Portal iView Who’s Who

Figure 5.6 illustrates the iViews located in the SAP NetWeaver PCD regarding the Who’s Who functionality.

Figure 5.6 Who’s Who iViews Located in the PCD

Figure 5.7 depicts the Who’s Who iView as the end user sees it in the SAP NetWeaver Portal.

Figure 5.7 Who’s Who Rendering for the End User in the SAP NetWeaver Portal

This was first published in June 2011

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