What’s New in the SuccessFactors Platform for H2 2021

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On October 9, 2021, SAP released documentation for the H2 2021 release.  Preview release is October 15 and production is November 19. In this article we take a quick look at the latest updates for SAP SuccessFactors Platform. It’s a huge list for Platform this release – so we’ve tried to summarize the most interesting items.   You can view the full set of documentation in the What’s New Viewer here. For full details on the release cycle, check out the SAP SuccessFactors official product updates blog here.  Let’s get started! We’ve categorized the enhancements below for you starting with the most compelling in our opinion!

Of Special Interest

What stood out to me as the most interesting part of this release is the introduction of a Digital Assistant! As with most digital assistants, the feature is basically a natural language processing program that appears in the form of a chat window. Right now SAP is reporting they have over 250 scenarios programmed on the web version and over 20 on the mobile app. This feature is currently only available to early adopters.

The latest home page showing the Digital Assistant chatbot in action.

What Everyone Needs to Know

In this release, SAP announced a Tenant Preferred Time Zone feature. SAP is migrating servers to the UTC timezone. If you want to keep your server time zone where it is today, check out the link here: https://help.sap.com/doc/62fddbd651204629b46bbccbabf886ba/cloud/en-US/d5e86fa8bb564058820592217d3a21d4.html

The Center of Capabilities continues to expand its functionality. There is now a proficiency rating scale available that allows you to quantify the skill level of employees in the skills within the Center of Capabilities. There are also a new Center of Capabilities Library Reports for Stories in People Analytics.

The settings, such as providing a unique name to the rating scale, defining the number of proficiency levels, and assigning the numerical value as 0 or 1 for the lowest proficiency level are available on the Rating Scale page of the Capabilities Portfolio Settings wizard.

There have also been some general UI Enhancements to the center of capabilities functionality overall. In addition, the capabilities portfolio is now available which is the main experience that shows the list of capabilities for a worker.

The Capabilities Portfolio page provides information about the capabilities assigned to a user. This page also provides users the option to navigate to the Opportunities Marketplace.

There are a large number of new To-Do Tasks across all modules available on the latest home page. Examples are shown below. Check out the full list here: https://help.sap.com/doc/62fddbd651204629b46bbccbabf886ba/cloud/en-US/34c3515e0de14431b35d76525dfb00df.html

Example of the home page showing several pending tasks: approve job offers, approve job requisitions, approve time off requests, approve time sheets, complete calibration, and complete 360 evaluation.

In addition, there are a lot more Quick Actions available on the latest homepage. For example, there is a My Team quick action for managers to review info and take actions on their team members. Clock Time lets you clock in and out. Complete Payroll tasks, Delegate Workflows, My Profile, Org Chart, View Admin Alerts, and View Team Absences all pretty much do exactly what you would expect them to do as well. You can check out the full details here: https://help.sap.com/doc/62fddbd651204629b46bbccbabf886ba/cloud/en-US/f6d92d1c4a834f29b8b1998c7b845d1b.html

Also the header page now conforms to Fiori standards. This is always great news to me to see more and more parts of the system align with Fiori – have you notices how much better the web system looks on your mobile phone these days? That’s thanks to Fiori!

If you are still on the V12 Employee Profile, its time to move to the latest employee profile! This functionality is finally deleted.

Security

Certificate-Based authentication is now supported for standard third party integration packages for Boomi and CPI. My sources inside SAP tell me that certificate-based authentication will be the preferred method of authentication going forward for interfaces in general. Aligned to this, SAP also announced the depication of HTTP Basic Authentication for APIs. End of maintenance is November 19, 2021 and deletion will be November 1, 2022! Get your certificates ready!

You can also now Restrict API Access to Specific Users through OAuth 2.0. Additionally, you can now restrict individual user’s login to specific IP addresses. These allow for an extra layers of security in your integrations and general user access.

IP restriction can be applied to individual users.

Also of Note

There were also some minor curiosities for me in this batch of platform enhancements that I thought were pretty…pretty good! For example, you can now provide a Zip file for the job that updates employee photos en masse. Before this was a bear for anyone who suffered through putting a bunch of uncompressed photos on an SFTP server and waited for the large data transfer!

There’s also deep linking now available to go straight to someone’s employee profile. I could see this being useful for succession planners or managers talking about employees and wanting to share their profiles.

The employee import email also now includes a new troubleshooting section to help you figure out what went wrong on the import. Nice!

Conclusion

The SAP SuccessFactors product continues to grow and become increasingly more robust! This does not represent all of the enhancements in the H2 2021 release – only the highlights we found most compelling. Check out the What’s New Viewer here for the complete list of enhancements.

See this great article for useful information on how to prepare for a SAP SuccessFactors Regular Release.

Contact info@worklogix.com for any assistance supporting and implementing your SAP SuccessFactors Modules, or download our support services brochure.

What’s New in Onboarding 2.0 H2 2021

The latest release updates are here! In this article we take a quick look at the latest updates for SAP SuccessFactors Onboarding 2.0. Preview release is October 15 and production is November 19.  You can view the full set of documentation in the What’s New Viewer here. For full details on the release cycle, check out the SAP SuccessFactors official product updates blog here. Let’s get started! We’ve categorized the enhancements below for you!

Security Enhancements

In the category of security, there’s been an enhancement to proxy where you now have more granular control over whether or not a person who can proxy has access to onboarding. You can select the check box on the Proxy Management screen.

A screenshot of the Proxy Management page with a box highlighting the new Grant Proxy Rights options.

Compliance Form Updates

There’s been a number of compliance form updates. Form I-9 was enhanced so that the instructions of the form now show up in the system help icon sections. Various popups and warning messages make the form more informative to users. You can view the complete list of enhancements to form I-9 here: https://help.sap.com/doc/62fddbd651204629b46bbccbabf886ba/cloud/en-US/587c828977e84747868fa5125cf38eb9.html

A screenshot of the help text displayed for the First Name field in USCIS Form I-9.

In addition to US I-9, the Canadian TD1form for all provinces is now supported. The New Zealand KS2 KiwiSaver deduction form, Tax code Declaration, and Tax rate notification for contractor forms are now supported.

Qualtrics Integration

SAP continues to further their integrations with Qualtrics across the board. There’s now a new Intelligent Services event to send internal hire information to Qualtrics. This allows you to send email surveys to employees when the internal hire step is completed. There is a new configuration screen that makes this setup easy! It is shown below:

A screenshot of the Add New Integration screen in Manage Qualtrics Integrations shows Onboarding, with Internal Hire Process Completed as the event name.

New Hire Enhancements

A few enhancements have been made to the new hire experience. New Hires can now complete the onboarding process on the homepage. There’s new “To Do” tasks that show up for onboarding here for the new hires such as compliance tasks and completing personal data collection.

New hires can also now access LMS courses before their first day of work as shown below!

A screenshot of the home page where new hires can access the assigned courses.

The complete new hire experience for the home page can now be done on the latest version of the homepage.

Hiring Manager / Admin Enhancements

In addition to new hire experience, the hiring manager and admin experiences have seen some updates as well. Future Managers can also now access information about their new hires in the onboarding dashboard and “To Do” tasks. Role-based permissions also now allow you to assign based on this new future manager relationship.

The Restart process for onboarding has also been enhanced so that you can choose whether or not to retain data or instead reload from recruiting.

The switches to determine the new hire information after restart are available under Restart Settings. The Allow Recruiting Update switch allows you to determine whether values must be updated from Recruiting or the existing values must be retained in Onboarding for auto-restart. The Retain Onboarding Information switch allows you to determine whether to update new hire information from Recruiting or retain the existing value for manual restart.

General Process Enhancements / Behind The Scenes Enhancements

Behind the scenes, there’s been some other updates as well!

When it comes to picklists, the mapping from recruiting to employee central can be a pain. The system has now been updated to map based on a series of potential exact matches rather than just on labels. First, the system will attempt to map based on the option id since this is the most unique identifier. If no exact match is found, then mapping is performed via label using the external code value. If no external code is available, then the label alone is used.

Also behind the scenes, when a major patch/release is deployed to the system, the default onboarding process in the Business Process Engine is now automatically upgraded. Previously, an admin had to manually upgrade the flow.

The upgraded versions of the Default Onboarding Process flow are visible under Process Definitions.

The rehire process has also been enhanced to make life easier for admins managing this process. Values such as date of birth, national id, legal entity, and user records can now be seen as shown below:

Enhanced version of the Rehire Verification screen with date of birth, national ID, legal entity, and last working day.

No shows and rehires are handled better as ell. The value “No Show” has been added as an event reason for cancelling the second rehire check. There is also a new welcome email template specifically designed for rehires.

Conclusion

The SAP SuccessFactors Onboarding product continues to grow and become increasingly more robust! This does not represent all of the enhancements in the H2 2021 release – only the highlights we found most compelling. Check out the What’s New Viewer here for the complete list of enhancements.

See this great article for useful information on how to prepare for a SAP SuccessFactors Regular Release.

Contact info@worklogix.com for any assistance supporting and implementing your SAP SuccessFactors Modules, or download our support services brochure.

SAP SuccessFactors H1 2021 Employee Central Release Updates

Interested in what’s new for Employee Central for H1 2021? There’s quite a few enhancements! In this quick blog we run through the major release updates that caught our attention the most.

As of April 9, 2021, SAP has released the documentation for the H1 2021 release.  The preview release will be April 16 and the move to production will be May 21st.  You can view the full set of documentation in the What’s New Viewer here. For full details on the release cycle, check out the SAP SuccessFactors official product updates blog here.  New to the release process? For tips on how to manage a release, check out our blog here

Qualtrics Integration

Increasing the integration between Qualtrics and SuccessFactors has been a priority for SAP – we’ve seen multiple integrations across modules and now there’s a few more for EC. SAP has added 4 email survey integrations based on intelligent services to trigger in the below events:

  • Employee Rehire
  • First Time Manager
  • Transition from Individual Contributor to Manager
  • Transition from Manager to Individual Contributor

These surveys can be very insightful to find out if employees are comfortable in their new roles and identify where they might need help!

BizX Talent Integration / Succession Data Model

Integration with the BizX Talent side of SuccessFactors has also been improved. In particular, SAP has made it possible to run a full HRIS sync (that pushes data from EC to BizX) based on individual user ids.

In addition, they’ve made it easier to view what the HRIS mapping looks like in the Manage Business Configuration Screen with an overview screen of all of the mappings in one location. Previously you had to dig through all of the fields individually to find this information! Check out the screenshot below:

Overview of HRIS Sync Mappings

Admins can also now export the Succession Data Model and Country/Region_specific Succession Data models from Admin Center (previously only partners could do this in provisioning). Simply give the new permission “Export Succession Data Model or Export Country-Specific Succession Data Model” permission and you’ll get access to the screen shown below:

New Export Succession Data Model Screen

These enhancements help make the integration between employee central and the talent modules more clear cut.

Business Rule Scenarios

Multiple new business rule scenarios are now available that allow you to:

  • Configure cross-entity rules triggered from a source entity with changes executed on the target entity
  • Calculate Full Time Equivalent for a user
  • Create business validations / raise alert messages for HRIS elements

These enhancements contribute to the ongoing effort to increase the flexibility and robustness of business rules.

SAP Integration

If you sync your HRIS data with SAP, you’ll be happy to know there are 10 enhancements to this integration including:

  • A comparison tool that compares configuration between EC instances
  • An enhancement considering the purging status of ERP communication data while replicating employee communication data from EC
  • The ability to select specific foundation objects by object ID ad choose log or list view when viewing the Foundation Object Transfer Report
  • In Define Employee Data Settings for EC instance, the field names have been changes to “Standard Mapping (PERNR)” and “Standard Mapping (CP)” for clarity
  • The Enhanced Work Schedule Rule Transfer Report was updated with a new BAdi to maintain the external code of work schedule rules
  • Better data replication that considers purged data
  • Replication of inactive employees that were terminated in EC before the full transmission start date
  • Sample contract elements (IT0016) content
  • Replication of OM data infotypes even when relationship data (IT1001) can’t be replicated
  • Organizational assignment data that was marked as status “Failed” will change to “Outdated” once the next replication job runs

These enhancements help to make the interface more robust and reliable for customers wishing to replicate employee data to on-premise SAP.

Global Benefits

Enhancements and automations came to the global benefits functionality as well. Let’s take a quick look at these:

  • When an employee has a job change that affects their benefits eligibility, this can now trigger an intelligent service event to create or update benefit enrollments
  • When benefit master data changes, a new automatic enrollment job now exists to handle creating and updating enrollments
  • A new pension / retirement savings plan type has been introduced called “Workplace” that offers additional contribution options

Once again, we see how the system continues to provide helpful automations and features to make this functionality more simple and robust to use.

Reporting

Custom fields are now allowed in story reports. The fields can be seen within the query designer.

Conclusion

The SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central product continues to grow and become increasingly more robust! This does not represent all of the enhancements in the H1 2021 release – only the highlights we found most compelling. Check out the What’s New Viewer here for the complete list of enhancements.

See this great article for useful information on how to prepare for a SAP SuccessFactors Regular Release.

Contact info@worklogix.com for any assistance supporting and implementing your SAP SuccessFactors Modules, or download our support services brochure.

What’s New in Onboarding H1 2021

It’s that time of year! As of April 9, 2021, SAP has released the documentation for the H1 2021 release.  The preview release will be April 16 and the move to production will be May 21st.  You can view the full set of documentation in the What’s New Viewer here. For full details on the release cycle, check out the SAP SuccessFactors official product updates blog here.  New to the release process? For tips on how to manage a release, check out our blog here

In the SAP SuccessFactors Onboarding H1 2021 release, we’ve mainly seen updates to compliance forms and processes as well as some user experience enhancements and security Features. Let’s take a look at what’s new in the Onboarding module below!

Compliance Forms & Processes

As expected, SAP continues to expand the number of compliance forms supported. In this release SAP has included these forms:

In addition, reporting information is also now available for I-9 and E-Verify data so that you can create Stories in in People Analytics using the information.

Also important on the compliance front: Russian Personally Identifiable Information (PII) data will also now be stored in the Russian data center from Day 1. For more details, take a look at the help guide here: https://help.sap.com/viewer/c94ed5fcb5fe4e0281f396556743812c/2105/en-US/d9e6b7923a9049a6a742f13d05b28d5a.html

User Experience

In addition to compliance features, there’s some nice enhancements to user experience. Of all the modules, I think onboarding is one of the more confusing to navigate as an admin user and these enhancements help address this issue. Let’s take a look!

First, users can now navigate directly to the onboarding dashboard from the global navigation (early adoption feature). I personally liked this one because when I first started with Onboarding, I was used to the main page of every module being accessible through the navigation menu – onboarding was the only one where you had to click on a home page tile instead. I think this will provide some nice consistency for users.

In addition to easier navigation to the dashboard, its features have also been enhanced. Here’s a list of the new feaures:

  • New Hire Search – allows onboarding users to type a name to search through new hires
  • Checklist Task – can now be viewed under “New Hire Tasks”, items can be added for a specific user using the “Delegated” drop down (delegates can also be notified via email when the task is assigned to them), and under “View Details” users can edit the checklist tasks,
  • I-9 – corrections to section 1 can now be initiated from the “New Hire Details” action menu
  • E-Verify – view details from the “E-Verify Case Details” link on the “New Hire Details” screen
User Search
Correct I-9 from the Action Menu

Its great to see the dashboard getting some new features to make transitioning between screens easier!

Next, the locale for external users of Onboarding will now be updated automatically based on their recruiting settings. This is a common sense win. Locale can also be set when manually adding users via the “Add New Hire to Onboarding” screen. If no value is specified in either scenario, the locale will default to the default language set in provisioning.

Security Features

In addition to compliance enhancements and improvements to usability, there’s a few cool security features worth mentioning.

First, the target population for the external user target population can now be based on the division, department, and location of the user. This allows organizations to have multiple admins specific to division, department, and/or location rather than just admins who can see the whole new user population.

Next, on the new hire side, the external user visibility tool lets you make objects visible to new hires. This gives a level of flexibility to administrators they previously had to contact SAP to modify. For a full list of objects and how to configure, check out this link: https://help.sap.com/viewer/c94ed5fcb5fe4e0281f396556743812c/2105/en-US/5df8a72caabf4848a145b74f0516cff8.html

Last, read access audit logs for onboarding have been enhanced to show context and reason why sensitive fields were accessed (e.g. through the UI, or APIs, or a downloaded document). This is designed to give auditors better understanding of why data was accessed.

Wrap up

I hope you’ve enjoyed this quick review of the latest Onboarding features available in the H1 2021 release! Do you need help managing your SuccessFactors Release cycles?  Download our support services brochure or email info@worklogix.com to see how we can help!

SAP SuccessFactors H1 2021 Release Updates for Succession

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It’s finally here! As of April 9, 2021, SAP has released the documentation for the H1 2021 release.  The preview release will be April 16 and the move to production will be May 21st.  You can view the full set of documentation in the What’s New Viewer here. For full details on the release cycle, check out the SAP SuccessFactors official product updates blog here.  New to the release process? For tips on how to manage a release, check out our blog here

In this release, we saw a wide range of enhancements across the Talent modules – some specific to Succession and others that lay across the modules but help out succession planners. Let’s take a look at what’s new in the Succession module below!

Succession Management Specific Changes

Let’s start with what’s new just for Succession Management before we take a look at some general talent improvements that are relevant to Succession.

Nomination History

The main new feature exclusive to Succession Management is the ability to view nomination history in the talent card and in the people profile. Users will with Succession Planning permission can click a history icon on these screens to see a list of positions for which the employee has been nominated and information about the nomination history for each including the date, nominator, readiness level, status, change type, and notes. The information includes deleted nominations as well.

Nomination History View

Hide Pending Nominations for Talent Pools

Succession configurators have had the ability to hide pending nominations from succession planners for some time now, but the ability was only extended to position nominations. Now, this feature works for talent pool nominations as well. This configuration setting remains in the same in Admin Center -> Nomination Setup.

Form-Based Nomination Deleted

Another update specific to succession with this release is that form-based succession nomination will be completely deleted as of May 21,2021. This was a legacy method of approving nominations – if you never used it, then don’t worry because no action is required. If you are still using forms to approve nominations, you have little time left to switch to the newer permission-based method!

General Talent Management Updates Relevant to Succession

There are also numerous updates across the talent modules in general that affect not only Succession, but also Performance, Goals, Development, and/or Calibration. Let’s take a look at these briefly below.

Editing Talent Info Directly on a Talent Card

It seems like every customer for whom I’ve implemented Succession has asked why they need to switch between the employee profile view and other views to edit talent information. Why can’t customers just change the information right on the talent card that shows up across the different views that contain the talent card? This way data like impact of loss or risk of loss can be updated when the user has the contextual information they need to make the decision. Well now, customers can!

Users can now click the icon shown below to open a popup that allows these fields to be changed.

Editing Information on a Talent Card

My Jobs Downloads

Previously Succession (and other talent reports) could be downloaded from the Scheduled Reports page in Classic View. Reports may now be downloaded from My Jobs page within Report Center. This eliminates the need to switch to Classic View prior to downloading.

A report with multiple files can be downloaded in a compressed .zip file or downloaded individually.

Numerous Calibration Session Improvements

There are a variety of calibration session feature that have been added/updated as well. For example specifying default facilitators or allowing managers to more easily create calibration sessions for their teams. For more information on these improvements, check out our blog on What’s in in H1 2021 SAP SuccessFactors Calibration Release.

That’s a Wrap!

That’s all of the updates for H1 2021! We hope you found this blog informative!

Do you need help managing your SuccessFactors Release cycles?  Download our support services brochure or email info@worklogix.com to see how we can help!

Cataloging Skills in the Job Profile Builder

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Introduction

The Job Profile Builder is a valuable tool that helps companies categorize their positions into groups of jobs. Each job profile contains descriptions of what functions that job performs, qualifications needed to perform the job, etc. For more information on the Job Profile Builder in general, see our article Job Profile Builder: An Introduction.

In this article, we go into further detail on how to catalog skills within job profiles. As a company explores what jobs to create and how to catalog their jobs, one of the most important distinguishing characteristics to identify those jobs are the skills and qualifications needed for the job.

Adding Skills in Manage Job Profile Content

The list of available skills for jobs in SAP SuccessFactors are defined in the “Manage Job Profile Content” screen (just type “Manage Job Profile Content” in the search bar and if you have admin access and the screen name will come up for you to select). You can see in the screenshot below the list of available types of content SAP allows you to create slot populate on a job profile.

Types of Job Profile Content

You can edit the list of available items within each of the categories shown above. Some of these categories are pretty obvious on how to populate with options. For example “Education – Degree” and “Education – Major” would pretty obviously contain lists of degrees and majors that are relevant to the company. The same can be said for certifications and interview questions. Interview questions you create here will show to recruiters. Certifications is where you would list of the certifications relevant to your company’s industry. However, some of these other items can be a little more difficult to understand. A prime examples is “Skill”. This is a very broad term. So how do we go about creating a list of available skills?

If you click “Skill” from the drop down shown above, you will see a list of the skills currently cataloged in your system as shown below.

Job Profile Content Skills View

Now, we will take a look at how to add a skill from the library as a demonstration of what makes for a good skill in the SAP SuccessFactors Job Profile Builder. From the screen shown above, we can click the “Add Skills from SuccessStore” link. The screen will update as shown below.

Adding a SuccessStore skill based on job family and role

There are two ways to browse through the catalog of skills. The first way shown above is through families and roles. This method associates the skills to a particular role within the standard SuccessStore catalog. You can learn more about job families and roles in Job Profile Builder: An Introduction. We recommend that if you want to add skills for a standard role within the catalog, that you add them from the “Set up Families and Roles” screen instead as shown below. This will actually add the role and family itself along with the skills instead of just the skill with no role.

Adding all mapped skills when adding a Job Role

The second way to add skills is shown below is to browse through skills that are not assigned to a particular job role but are organized through categories and groups by choosing “Unassigned Skills Browsed by Category” in the drop down in the upper left corner of the screen. You can simply think of categories and groups as two levels of organization to catalog your skills: categories being the highest level which contain groups and groups containing the individual skills. To choose a skill, click a category and then a group, and then click the name of skill(s) you want to add and click “add” as shown below. It might seem a little confusing as to why SAP created both a role taxonomy and a skill category taxonomy to search through skills, but when you consider that not everyone uses the standard roles library from the SuccessStore it makes sense to have another way to categorize skills.

Adding a SuccessStore skill based on Category and Group

When you return to the main screen as shown below, you will see the skill added to your local catalog of skills. You can then click the gear icon and choose “Edit” to look at the specific contents of the skill.

Selecting a skill in your library to edit

Here in the “Edit: Skill” screen shown below you can see all the predefined content for the skill from the SuccessStore. SAP SuccessFactors skills consist of a skill name, a library name, a category, and a group to help organize the skill into a taxonomy. Getting into the detail of the specific skill, we see the definition and then 5 different proficiency levels (1 being the most basic and 5 being the most advanced – this scale is pre-set and cannot be changed). Looking at the fields and values on this screen, you can start to get an idea of how skills can be useful to define exactly what skills are required and at what specific level and what criteria define that level when interviewing someone for a job posting or guiding someone towards promotion or working with someone to remediate job performance. Now that you have a good understanding of what a skill looks like, you can continue to add or edit skills in the screen shown above. To add a skill from scratch, click the “Create Skill” link in the upper right corner of the screen. This will also take you to the screen shown below but with all the fields blank.

Creating and editing skills

Adding Skills to Job Profiles

Once we have a list of skills defined, we can start to add them to our individual job profiles (or if you downloaded the predefined skills when you downloaded the SuccessStore job family and role, the skill will already be there when you create the profile). For info on how to create a job profile see Job Profile Builder: An Introduction. You can see in the screenshot below, when we look at an existing job profile or create a new one in the “Manage Job Profiles” screen, the skills show up in the area specified for Skills in the job profile template. You can mouse over the skills section to add or edit skills. For each skill added you will also need to specify the proficiency level expected for the job. So for example we have added the “Account Manager” role and all associated skills to our library in one of our earlier screenshots. When we create a new profile for the role, the skill “Account Management” is automatically added at level 3 proficiency, “Building and Managing Teams” at level 3, etc.

Skill assignments within a job profile

Conclusion

By now you should have a good understanding of what Job Profile Builder Skills are and how to create them on your own, pull standard skills from the SuccessStore library, and add them to a profile. With some good examples shown here and available on the SuccessStore, you should be able to start building your own library of skills specific to your company needs and associate them to your job profiles and roles. Adding these skills can be valuable for recruiters looking for guidance on what to look for in a candidate, or for employees looking to develop themselves for their next role.

Do you need help setting up your Job Profile Builder? Contact us at info@worklogix.com.

An Introduction to 360 Evaluations in SAP SuccessFactors

As year-end approaches, it is common for many companies to take a second look at their employee performance and goal setting processes. In the past few weeks, I’ve been helping multiple companies revamp their employee performance processes. While some are just tweaking current forms and processes, others are considering including a new and often enlightening process – 360 evaluations.

What is a 360 evaluation?

The idea behind a 360 evaluation is to get a picture of how others view your performance from all angles. This means that in addition to getting feedback from your manager (top down), you also get feedback from your own direct reports (bottom-up), peers (side), and even external sources (vendors, business partners, customers, etc.).

Why do companies implement 360 evaluations?

Receiving feedback from a variety of sources helps create a more complete picture of how an employee is performing and/or perceived to be performing from different angles. 360 evaluations can help uncover trends and gaps in these different angles. For example, a manager may consider an employee a top performer, but when feedback is asked from peers or external sources on an anonymous basis, the employee might get different feedback (“He’s always on top of his own tasks, but sometimes at the expense of the team as a whole when we need his support”). Similarly, an employee may not be considered a top performer by a manager, but feedback from others could reveal a lot of solid performance feedback into which the manager never previously had sight (E.g. “She’s been so helpful in getting my career on the right path and helping me with work tasks at the expense of her own!”). Allowing this feedback to come to light can help employees and managers work to truly improve employee performance. We’ll take a look in a moment at how SAP SuccessFactors 360 evaluations aid in attaining this kind of feedback.

Walk-through of a 360 form in SAP SuccessFactors

360 forms are launched just like performance forms are. However, it is important to note that 360 forms use a separate screen for launching (don’t worry, this screen pretty much works the same as the other launch forms screen you are used to. After picking a target population, the admin can launch just like a normal performance form.

Search bar showing separate launch screen for 360 forms

360 forms will also show up in the performance inbox like other performance forms, but with a different icon. It is important to recognize that 360 forms use a template type than regular performance forms and get treated slightly differently in these respects.

View of Performance Inbox with both 360 and regular performance reviews

Once the first person in the route map gets the form (in this case the employee), they need to choose who will be involved in the evaluation. The system can be configured to default in people for categories like direct reports, manager, and peers.

Employee nominates raters step of 360 review

Users also have the option to add external participants as shown below by simply providing a first name, last name, and email and then choosing in what category the person should be included.

Adding an external participant

Once the user is finished adding participants, there is usually an approval step prior to the evaluations being sent out. Evaluations can be designed using sections similar to those you are used to seeing in a standard performance review form. There are sections for objectives, competencies, as well as an introduction and a section for the subject’s information. Unlike regular performance forms that can be configured heavily on the online editor in “Manage Templates”, 360 forms can only be fully setup by partners or SAP (though much of the config is done in the online editor).

For internal participants, the evaluation is sent to the user’s performance inbox like the typical performance reviews where they can then open the form as shown below.

360 Review Form Sent to Evaluator

In the case of external participants, after approval of the evaluators, an email is sent with a link that allows external users to access the form. This can be a security consideration for some organizations since the link is only as secure as the receiving email system.

After all evaluations have been completed, the form is put in the completed status and the employee / manger / etc can view the results depending on permission settings. You can see an example completed performance form below.

Completed Review showing Anonymous ratings

One key advantage of the 360 form in SuccessFactors over the typical annual performance review is that the 360 feedback comments and ratings can be made anonymous. Obviously the user would know who their manager is, or they might be able to derive who the other evaluators are based on category if there are only one or two – so the forms allow you to configure minimum counts in each category as well as rollups to combine categories to help keep anonymity. The user can click on the link for each reviewer to see the details of each review and create an HTML or PDF printout of the details as shown below.

Printed Detail of Individual Review Feedback

The form also has a nice detailed report showing the combined feedback comments and overall ratings by category. This can help the employee and manager understand where any gaps between self and manager evaluation ratings may exist along with other types of ratings from other categories. For examplem we can see below there is a large gap between the manager’s perception and the employee and other’s perception of “Prioritizing and Organizing Work”. Perhaps the manager is getting too much priority and the employee needs to focus on the work the team as a whole needs completed!

Wrap Up

After this quick walkthrough, hopefully you can now see the advantage of 360 forms as an insightful tool to get employee performance feedback from a variety of sources and understand what a typical end-to-end 360 process looks like.

Do you need help implementing or changing your 360 form or other performance and goals processes? Contact us at info@worklogix.com.

COVID-19 Threatening your Business Continuity? Try Succession and Development to Promote Internal Mobility.

opened brown door
Photo by Matthew T Rader on Unsplash

With so many jobs lost, we all need to hunker down and concentrate on keeping our current jobs until things get better right? Nothing could be further from the truth!

Realizing the Need

Just last week, I had a call with a customer who wanted to re-examine their Succession Management process. They had the system set up. They didn’t really use it. Then COVID hit. Like many companies, the organization underwent a lot of changes and left a lot of resource gaps. Now they are realizing they could have been better prepared and are looking to quickly ramp back up their succession process. They are not alone.

Throughout this year, I’ve had the pleasure of serving on HR.com‘s advisory board for Internal Mobility, Succession, and Career Development. The organization just recently published the results of the cross-industry study we board members helped create. From what I see, the survey results are consistent with what I am seeing in the example I described above. Let’s take a closer look at the facts!

First off, most organizations recognize they don’t have an effective succession management and/or planning process in place. In addition to only 40% of companies agreeing or strongly agreeing that their process is effective as shown below, another survey question revealed that only 26% have a succession management system in place.

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

Furthermore, the survey also found that only about 1 in 5 companies have considerable job mobility within the organization.

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

At the same time, companies realize that business continuity (e.g. keeping the lights on!) is the most important reason to promote succession management and internal mobility.

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

Recognizing The Gap

So let’s get this straight, companies recognize that Succession and Internal Mobility are important, but they don’t currently have good systems and processes in place to support them. So why don’t more companies get their Succession Management systems and processes up and running? The problem is, most organizations don’t consider Succession Management important to the organization.

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

The gap here is that the process really is important for the reasons these companies have already realize and just not acted up (remember what we said about keeping the lights on?). And many companies right now are starting to realize this the hard way during COVID as employees leave both voluntarily and involuntarily and large resource gaps are being felt because of this process gap. I can only attribute this trend to “perception” since the facts point to a real need here. I think it is time to end this perception!

Is It Worth The Investment?

If I invest in a Succession and Development Management strategy, is it really going to work? The answer is “Yes!” The survey found overwhelmingly that those organizations who are internal mobility leaders, it is easier for employees to move to new positions. Making it easy for employees to move from one position to another makes it easier to fill critical roles with people your organization already knows and trusts rather than going through the expense and risk of recruiting externally (which many companies are still unable to do at all at the moment with some still experiencing hiring freezes).

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

OK, I get it, I need Succession and Internal Mobility! How do I get started?

There’s a ton of ways! We’ve talked a lot about Succession Management – which involves tagging which roles are critical to the organization and identifying how to fill those roles. This can help you define who to develop and what they need to develop. But of course, that means investing in employee development itself! Not surprisingly, the survey found a similar trend here. Almost half of companies reported they did not have a development process or program!

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

What’s more frightening, is that during the Pandemic, when the concentration should be on developing the fewer employees many companies are trying to make more effective, the opposite seems to be happening. 47% of companies saw decreases in employee development.

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

At the same time, employee demand for development opportunities has increased! 75% of companies saw that employees are looking for development opportunities!

Source: HR.com’s Internal Mobility Webinar Nov 5, 2020

Once again, there is a huge disconnect which helps explain further why many company strategies are out of alignment with the needs. Only once employees are able to develop their skills and competencies in order to meet the needs of critical roles will they will be ready to start filling those critical roles.

There are a lot of specific strategies companies are using the promote internal mobility and fill their succession management strategies. To find out more information about the different approaches companies are taking to implement their Succession and Development Strategies, you can download the full survey at HR.com or contact info@worklogix.com to talk more about your strategy!

Creating a Safe and Efficient Recruiting Process using Technology during COVID-19

Companies are hiring! A recent LinkedIn article shows that individual companies are now hiring 10,000s of new employees. This is great news for the economy. We at Worklogix have also seen customers gearing up their recruiting systems. But all this renewed activity in the “New Normal” raises the question “How do we keep everyone safe during the process without sacrificing the candidate experience?” In this blog we share how we’ve helped customers expand their recruiting capabilities with SAP SuccessFactors technology to keep candidates and current employees safe.

Engagement

Just because there are more people looking for jobs doesn’t mean engagement needs to go down. Quite the opposite–it means now is your chance to engage the most people to get the best talent! If your company isn’t hiring yet, it makes the challenge even more important because without any postings, you’ll need to come up with creative ways to keep people checking back in with your career site. We’ve helped companies integrate with tools like chatbots that interact with candidates to document their interests and create talent profiles that can be used to trigger email updates. If you are wondering how to create talent pools and target them with email campaigns within SAP SuccessFactors, checkout our other blog article “Actively Engage Prospective Candidates with SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting CRM Features“. Email campaign content can range from virtual career fair announcements and updates on postings, to videos featuring real managers describing why they like working for the company and what they are looking for in a good candidate.

Automated Assessments

Assessment Status and Scores showing within Candidate Overview Screen in SuccessFactors

Even prior to COVID-19, we’ve been helping customers sift through 1,000s of candidates with automated assessments. With more unemployed people seeking jobs, there is increasing pressure to comb through even more candidates per posting. Automated assessments can take the form of surveys or even Artificial Intelligence. For example, we’ve help customers automatically send out 3rd party survey assessments immediately upon applying or at other stages in the recruiting process. From there, the candidate can either be automatically disqualified or be sorted into different statuses and/or given a rating to easily compare against others. Assessment status and scores can also be integrated directly into the SuccessFactors user interfac as shown in the screenshot above and even sorted in descending order for maximum visual efficiency for recruiters. We’ve also worked with cutting edge vendors to give candidate similar ratings based on resume and candidate profile content using AI technology.

One-Way Interviewing / Virtual Interviewing

As in-person interviewing takes on new risk, many are turning to one-way interviewing and/or virtual interviewing. We’ve helped customers setup their SAP SuccessFactors systems to automatically trigger 3rd party video interviewing systems when placed in an interview status. Typically, after the status trigger, the candidate gets an email with instructions, perhaps to download an app on their phone. In a one-way interview scenario, candidates are prompted with specific questions and are allowed to record an audio or audio/video segment answering each question. The recruiter then receives the segments in the vendor system and can even get automated system feedback on how the candidate answered. The advantage here in addition to not having to meet in person is there’s no need to work out scheduling issues and the candidate can often re-record until they are satisfied with the answer they have provided. Two-way interview automations often take the form of automated scheduling systems ending in a virtual conference call.

Will I have to work on site once I get the Job?

Depending on the position, this is probably a question on many candidates’ minds when applying to a new position, and one that recruiters should be prepared to answer with confidence. At Worklogix, we’ve helped companies flagging their positions to denote how critical being “in-person” is to the role and even denote what kind of proximity to other people or exposure risk the role may require. By expanding position objects in the SuccessFactors MDF and linking the field to the requisition, recruiters can post positions and communicate with candidates clearly about the on-site expectations of the role are.

Automated Drug Screening and Background Checks

While some companies may choose to forego drug screenings, others like those subject to DOT regulations have no choice. A recent SHRM article talks about the pros and cons and realities of drug testing during COVID. The question seems to be, are we doing more harm by not conducting screenings designed to provide a safe work environment for employees? Giving candidates options might help here. We’ve helped many customers setup automations with a variety of background check & drug screening vendors. Some of these vendors allow candidates to choose from a variety of facilities that may have different safety options candidates can choose from and feel more comfortable. In a typical automation scenario, the candidate is moved to a background screening status in SuccessFactors which triggers a call to the vendor, which in turn sends an email to the candidate to provide needed information and choose a drug screening facility. Results can also be shown directly in the SuccessFactors UI similar to assessment results.

Delaying I-9 Verification

Once a candidate is ready to hire, companies can also delay unneeded on-site attendance by delaying I-9 verification. As you may be aware, the Department of Homeland Security has delayed the need to verify employee work authorization documents. You can read the updates from DHS here. To comply for this, SAP has made updates to the existing Onboarding 1.0 process. You can read the full SAP note on the COVID-19 onboarding process here. For Onboarding 2.0, the US forms will be out as part of the H2 2020 release.

Wrapping up

Online engagement using chatbots and email campaigns, automated assessments, virtual interviewing, flagging positions for work conditions, automated background checks, and I-9 updates are just a few examples of how company recruiting initiatives are working to make the recruiting and onboarding process both safe and efficient during COVID-19.

Are you working on any similar recruiting initiatives and need help? Email us at info@worklogix.com!