Jeremy Masters

Author, speaker, and HR technology expert

My SAP HCM Preview to SAPPHIRE/ASUG 2013


Hi gang,

SAPPHIRENOW 2013 Conference

SAPPHIRENOW 2013 Conference

Like some of you, I will be attending SAP’s annual customer conference next week, SAPPHIRENOW, May 14-16 in sunny Orlando, FL.  It is also co-located with ASUG, the annual customer-focused conference for SAP’s largest user group. The event is an exciting conference since we get to hear directly from SAP, on hot topics and the overall roadmap. Specifically, within HCM there will be much focus on several topic areas which I will be listening for.

Here’s my top 5 list of SAP HCM topics I will be looking for during the conference:

1. What will HANA do (and be) for HCM?  Jarret Pazahanick wrote a nice piece on HANA for HCM on SCN here. With some of the topics on the roadmap  and under consideration (e.g. Compensation and Benefits modeling), it makes me wonder how (and when) on premise customers will consider using HANA. Of course, after yesterday’s announcement of SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud, SAP’s direction is clear for those companies ready for cloud.  For those on premise customers, there is still more information they need to understand what HANA can deliver for them. I will be looking next week at how HANA’s value can be realized for both customers on premise and those seeking cloud-based HR solutions.

2. What options do customers have for a refreshing User Experience? (i.e. what about HR Renewal and the other options that customers have for improved usability?). I wrote a blog on HR Renewal a few weeks back which you can read here, where I talk about “refreshing the UI”. Certainly, the new HR Renewal will be a welcome option for many customers (already on, or upgrading to ECC 6.0, Enhancement Package 6).  Robert Moeller, Solution Owner, Core HR at SAP, also just wrote a nice piece on this here on SCN, around Feature Pack 3 of HR Renewal which became available on March 13, 2013 to customers. Also, if you haven’t listened to the recent podcast from Insight Consulting Partners, please check it out here.  I was honored to join Insight Consulting Managing Partner Steve Bogner, and podcast members Brandon Toombs and Martin Gillet. Both Brandon and Martin will be at SAPPHIRE this year as well.

3. Any news about Payroll in the Cloud from SAP? If you haven’t already read this piece from Holger Mueller, do yourself a favor a read his blog “And suddenly…Payroll matters again!“.  SAP has been very light around this topic since the SuccessFactors acquisition.  The question on the table of course is whether SAP will build out a full cloud payroll solution, or keep with their instantiated hosted payroll offering (complimented with vendors like ADP). Next week, I will be keen on understanding if there is any buzz on the ground at SAPPHIRE regarding a payroll cloud initiative.

ASUG Annual Conference 201

ASUG Annual Conference 2013

4. Continue feeling the customer pulse around on premise v. hybrid v. full cloud On Tuesday, I will be co-presenting a session on a success story of how our organization, Worklogix, helped a leading pharmaceutical company with their global ECM (SAP Compensation) on premise solution. You can view the abstract of this session here if you would like to attend.  There is also a variety of SuccessFactors sessions as well, which you can see here. I will continue to meet with customers (existing and prospective) to get their perspective on this critical topic area – always one fiercely debated with lots of strong opinions.

Mobile Desktop

Menu screen for the Mobile Desktop by Worklogix

5. Understand the traction around mobile HCM. I wrote a blog on mobility and held an HR Forum Q&A for the Insider Learning Network which you can check out the transcript here.  Did you know SAP has a store like iTunes, and specifically for the HR Line of Business? Check out SAP’s apps, as well as those from software vendors who drive innovation in this great eco-system like Worklogix, EPI-USE, and hyperCision.  I will be looking to understand SAP’s direction with mobile applications, especially with regards to pricing and future innovation both using SAP HCM (Afaria as MDM and SUP as MEAP) as well as SuccessFactors offerings.

Whoever is going, please drop by booth (pod) #2027b to say hello to me and the rest of the Worklogix team who will be in the Exhibit Hall. Hope to see some of you soon!


Author: Jeremy Masters

Jeremy Masters is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Worklogix, a management and technology services firm specializing in enterprise application development and implementation support for HCM solutions. For 18 years, he has worked with the latest Talent Management and Self Service functionality within the SAP HCM suite and SuccessFactors, including Performance Management, Enterprise Compensation Management, ESS/MSS, Succession Planning, and E-Recruiting. He regularly presents at SAP Insider events and is the co-author of the following SAP PRESS books: Implementing Employee and Manager Self Services in SAP ERP HCM, SAP ERP HCM Performance Management, Enterprise Compensation Management in SAP ERP HCM, E-Recruiting with SAP ERP HCM, SAP ERP HCM Infotypes and SAP ERP Self-Service: Employee, Manager, and HR Renewal.


  1. Good job on the blog Jeremy as you cover a lot of important topics that I am hearing from customers and thanks for the mention.

    A few additional one could be:

    -Timeline and pricing (hopefully lack there of) on Hana Cloud Integration for SAP and SuccessFactors integration (hearing only ~30% of SAP HCM shops have NW PI installed)

    -Timeline on WFA, BizX and Employee Central going up on SAP HANA as there have been several delays since the announcement last year.

    Enjoy Sapphire and sad I am not going to be around for our signature group dinner although counting on Martin to get a picture 🙂

    • Hi Jarret, great additions.
      You brought up a good point around the middleware. We still need some clarity around positioning for the Netweaver PI versus SAP HANA Cloud Integration. This is especially important for those customers who are going with a hybrid approach.

      Regarding the dinner, you will be missed, though as you said, I am sure Martin will capture the Kodachrome moment.

  2. It is going to be a very busy time, catching up with plenty of items, subjects, friends and collegues. Thanks Jeremy for summarizing.

    Personally, I am also very curious to hear an update to the Employee Central (Core of HR in the cloud) roadmap, as well as to review the first real stories. 🙂 See you there!

  3. Hey Jeremy,
    Nice work as always. I look forward to catching up this week.
    As for Payroll in the cloud, look out for a presentation with NGA and Successfactors when you are there.

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