Detail Overview SAP HCM | SAP SuccessFactors

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Detail Overview SAP HCM SAP SuccessFactors

Definition, Differences, Benefits, and Implementation.


SAP HCM (Human Capital Management) is an On-premise HR solution provided by SAP. It is designed to manage various human resource processes and activities within an organization. SAP HCM covers a wide range of functionalities to support HR management, including talent acquisition, employee administration, payroll, time management, performance management, and more.

SAP SuccessFactors is a cloud-based Human Capital Management (HCM) solution that provides a comprehensive suite of tools to manage an organization’s HR processes, including talent acquisition, performance management, learning and development, compensation management, employee engagement, and more. It aims to help businesses optimize their workforce and align their HR strategies with overall business objectives.


SAP HCM and SAP SuccessFactors are both Human Capital Management (HCM) solutions offered by SAP, but they differ in terms of deployment, functionality, and technology.

Let’s compare the two:

Deployment and Technology:

SAP HCM: is an On-premise solution, which means it is installed and operated on the organization’s servers. It relies on traditional database technology for data storage and processing.

SAP SuccessFactors: is a cloud-based HCM solution. It is hosted and maintained by SAP in the cloud, and customers access it through the Internet. SuccessFactors uses in-memory computing technology, powered by SAP HANA, for faster data processing and real-time analytics.


SAP HCM: offers a comprehensive set of modules for managing HR processes, including personnel administration, organizational management, time management, payroll, and talent management. It provides core HR functionalities and is often suitable for organizations looking for robust HR management capabilities within their own IT infrastructure.

SAP SuccessFactors: is also a complete HCM suite. However, it places a stronger emphasis on talent management and employee engagement. It includes modules for talent acquisition, performance management, learning and development, compensation management, succession planning, and employee engagement. SuccessFactors is designed to support strategic HR initiatives and optimize talent management processes.

Updates and Enhancements:

SAP HCM: With On-premise deployment, customers have control over the timing and implementation of updates and enhancements. However, this also means that they are responsible for managing the upgrade process.

SAP SuccessFactors: As a cloud-based solution, SuccessFactors receives regular updates and enhancements directly from SAP. These updates are typically applied automatically by SAP, ensuring that customers always have access to the latest features and improvements.

Cost and Maintenance:

SAP HCM: The cost of implementing SAP HCM primarily includes licensing fees, hardware costs for On-premise deployment, and ongoing maintenance expenses. Organizations need to manage their own IT infrastructure and system updates.

SAP SuccessFactors: follows a subscription-based pricing model, where customers pay for the services, they use on a recurring basis. Cloud-based deployment reduces the need for On-premise hardware, and SAP handles system maintenance and updates.


SAP HCM: Integrating with other systems in the organization may require custom development and effort, depending on the complexity of the integration.

SAP SuccessFactors: is designed with integration in mind, and it easily integrates with other SAP solutions as well as third-party systems through standard APIs and connectors.

Benefits and Implementation Challenges of SuccessFactors

Key Features:

Talent Management: offers modules for recruitment, onboarding, performance management, goal management, succession planning, and more. These tools help businesses attract, develop, and retain top talent.

Learning and Development: The platform includes tools for creating and managing employee training programs, enabling businesses to enhance their workforce’s skills and knowledge.

Employee Central: This module serves as the core HRIS (Human Resource Information System), providing a centralized employee database and supporting various HR processes.

Compensation and Benefits: enables organizations to design and manage compensation plans and benefits packages for their employees.

Employee Engagement: The platform includes features to measure and improve employee engagement, including surveys and feedback mechanisms.

Analytics and Reporting: offers advanced analytics and reporting capabilities, allowing businesses to gain valuable insights into their workforce and HR processes.

Challenges of Implementing SAP SuccessFactors:

Data Migration and Integration: Migrating data from existing HR systems to SuccessFactors can be complex, and integration with other business systems may pose challenges. Ensuring data accuracy and consistency during the migration process is critical.

Change Management: Implementing requires employees to adapt to new processes and tools. Managing this change and ensuring user adoption can be a significant challenge.

Customization vs. Standardization: offers standard processes, but some organizations may have unique HR workflows that require customization. Striking the right balance between customization and leveraging standard functionalities is essential for a successful implementation.

Training and User Adoption: Providing adequate training to HR personnel and end-users is crucial for maximizing the benefits of SuccessFactors. Lack of proper training can lead to underutilization of the system and reduced productivity.

Vendor Management and Support: Since SuccessFactors is a cloud-based solution, businesses need to ensure proper vendor management and support. This includes addressing issues such as service level agreements, data security, and system updates.

Regulatory Compliance: HR processes often involve sensitive employee data, and ensuring compliance with data protection and labor laws is essential. Organizations need to understand the legal requirements of the regions they operate in and configure SuccessFactors accordingly.

Cost Considerations: provide significant benefits, the cost of subscription, implementation, and ongoing maintenance should be carefully evaluated to ensure a positive return on investment.

Performance and Scalability: As the organization grows, the system must be able to handle increased user loads and data volumes. Ensuring optimal performance and scalability can be a challenge for some businesses.

Despite the challenges, SAP SuccessFactors can bring substantial advantages to businesses by improving HR processes, fostering employee development, and enhancing overall workforce management. A well-planned SAP Implementation, supported by effective change management and user training, can help organizations overcome challenges and unlock the full potential of the platform.

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