How to Use Structural Authorizations for Effective HR Strategy and Security

  • by Eric Wood, SAP ERP HCM/SuccessFactors Solution Architect, Presence of IT
  • February 26, 2013
Proper SAP ERP HCM security involves more than just assigning traditional security roles to user IDs. Learn the importance of creating an effective SAP HR security strategy and how structural authorizations and position-based security play a role in this strategy. Get recommendations for proper HR security strategy design and the steps for implementing structural authorizations in your organization.
Key Concept

Structural authorizations involve using your organizational structure to provide an additional layer of security that is unavailable in traditional role-based security in an SAP system. Through the use of the organizational structure, evaluation paths, and dynamic object determination for individual users, structural authorizations provide a more secure landscape that is more flexible for meeting your needs while also cutting costs.

In my experience with SAP ERP HCM implementations, security gets a bad rap, or no rap at all, which is actually worse. Security in SAP ERP HCM is complex, and it’s not pretty. After years of experience with implementing numerous SAP ERP HCM modules and functionalities, I had the opportunity to implement structural authorizations and apply the practice for multiple clients. With this experience has come an understanding of the complexities and nuances of HR security, and I developed a new appreciation for the importance of HR security not only to IT, but also vis-à-vis HR.

SAP ERP HCM security experts are hard to come by. Even rarer are ones who actually understand the HR data that is being secured. I often see security playing catch-up during SAP ERP HCM implementations; too often it is an afterthought to the core functionality that takes all the attention. It’s not until auditors get involved, security gaffes are realized, or users miss critical deadlines that SAP ERP HCM security strategy gets the attention it deserves.

Eric Wood

Eric Wood is an SAP ERP HCM/SuccessFactors Solution Architect at Presence of IT.  He has 11 years of experience in corporate and consulting roles, focused on the strategy and development of HRIS solutions, specifically SAP ERP HCM. Eric has worked across a range of HR modules, both on-premise and in the cloud, for clients across various industries while based in the United States and Australia.  Eric is also a frequent conference speaker at SAP conferences in the U.S., Europe, Australia, and Singapore.

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10/30/2014 4:08:45 AM
Ali Al-Zahrani

Excellent article, thank you.

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