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Packaged integrations ease the flow of data between Employee Central, SAP ERP

Packaged integrations can help ease integrating core SAP HCM data from SuccessFactors Employee Central into SAP ERP, writes Luke Marson.

For customers who use a range of SAP ERP processes but want to move their core HR from SAP ERP HCM to SuccessFactors Employee Central, robust integration between the two systems is a critical concern. Replication of data into SAP ERP in a timely manner is not the only integration consideration -- mapping, transformation and design of the Employee Central data structure are not merely caveats but important cogs in the integration machine. Having the right data to run payroll, support time sheet entry in the cross-application time sheet, or CATS, or run workflows across SAP ERP is important to ensure business-as-usual when your system of record for employee data is SuccessFactors Employee Central. In this article, I'll detail some the SAP ERP packaged integrations, as well as some tips and considerations when implementing those packaged integrations.

Packaged Integrations

To enable the bidirectional replication of data from SuccessFactors Employee Central to SAP ERP, SAP has released a number of packaged integrations. They support both the Full Cloud HCM and Side-by-Side deployment models. These packaged integrations come in the form of an SAP add-on and integration content for both Dell Boomi AtomSphere and SAP HANA Cloud Integration. SAP has also released comprehensive documentation available on SAP Marketplace that details the installation, configuration and usage of these packaged integrations. These are the scenarios covered:

  • Employee master data from Employee Central to SAP ERP
  • Organizational data from Employee Central to SAP ERP
  • Cost Center data from SAP ERP FICO to Employee Central
  • Employee master data from SAP ERP HCM to Employee Central (for Side-by-Side)
  • Organizational data from SAP ERP HCM to Employee Central (for Side-by-Side)

We'll take a brief look at some of these packaged integrations.

Employee master data from Employee Central to SAP ERP

This packaged integration replicates key employee data to SAP ERP. It transfers the following data to SAP ERP infotypes:

SAP ERP infotypes

The package integration includes a number of BAdI (Business Add-Ins) implementations to support different logic and behaviors. These include but are not limited to:

  • Determining which Employee Central field to use for personnel number
  • Determining whether a Hire or Rehire action should be run for replicated data
  • Mapping Employee Central values to SAP Global Data Types (GDT)
  • Mapping Company Code and Cost Center keys
  • Assigning wage type and country combinations
  • Mapping custom fields
  • Restriction of data replication by country or infotype

Organizational data from Employee Central to SAP ERP and Cost Center data from SAP ERP FICO to Employee Central

This packaged integration replicates Foundation Object data from SuccessFactors Employee Central to SAP ERP, as well as employee assignments. It replicates Business Unit, Division and Department Foundation Object data as Organizational Unit objects (object type O), and Job Classification Foundation Object data as Job objects (object type C). It also replicates reporting relationships (A005) and the following employee assignments:

  • Business Unit
  • Division
  • Department
  • Job
  • Cost Center

In addition, it supports the replication of Cost Center data from SAP ERP FICO to Employee Central.

The package integration includes a number of BAdI implementations to support different logic and behaviors. These include but are not limited to:

  • Mapping organizational structure items
  • Determining cost center keys for multiple systems
  • Transforming cost center data prior to replication to Employee Central

The packaged integration also delivers the mapping table for organizational structure item mapping and a report to replicate the Cost Centers from SAP ERP FICO.

Employee Central Design Considerations

There are a number of important factors to consider during the design of the Employee Central system. These include:

  • Some standard field lengths in Employee Central are longer than can be handled by the SAP inbound service (e.g., the name field for Job Classification has a 32-character limit, but the inbound service has a 20-character limit).
  • Personnel Area does not have an equivalent field in Employee Central but is required in SAP ERP HCM infotype 0001.
  • The Pay Scale Structure may need to be set up in Employee Central and have valuation rules created.
  • Employee Central Picklist value codes that differ from SAP Global Data Type codes should be changed to match the SAP GDT code (e.g., Marital Status code for "Single" is S in EC and 0 in SAP).
  • Some fields are required for replication for specific countries (e.g., National ID is a required field for replication for the U.S. and Canada).

As a rule of thumb, the following SuccessFactors Employee Central Foundation Objects map with SAP ERP objects and transparent table entries:

SuccessFactors Employee Central Foundation Objects
Figure 1: SuccessFactors Employee Central Foundation Objects, and their SAP ERP HCM equivalents

And the following can be used for employee data that doesn't come from the Foundation Objects:

SuccessFactors Employee Central employee data
Figure 2: SuccessFactors Employee Central employee data equivalent data in SAP ERP HCM.

About the expert:
Luke Marson is a principal consultant and director of cloud HCM and related technologies at an IT consulting firm, where he focuses on SuccessFactors Employee Central, extensibility and integration technologies. He is a Certified Professional in Employee Central. He speaks and writes about SAP HCM and SuccessFactors extensively, co-authored the SAP Press title SuccessFactors with SAP ERP HCM and wrote the SAPexperts Special Report SAP and SuccessFactors -- An Overview. Marson is also an SAP Mentor.

Next Steps

How do you go about finding the right SuccessFactors implementation partner?

Here's an easy path to creating SuccessFactors Metadata Framework objects, rules

Five critical factors to integrating SAP SuccessFactors with SAP HCM

This was last published in October 2014

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