Workflow Basics for SAP ERP HCM

  • by Jonathan Bartlett, Senior HCM Consultant, Exaserv, Inc.
  • January 14, 2010
Maximize the potential of normal business processes by adding complex decisions and branches that the SAP system can process instantaneously and deliver to the next participant or participants. SAP delivers SAP Workflow as part of the core functionality. The setup of the organizational structure with Personnel Administration and Organizational Management provides many options for workflow routing.

In talking with clients, one of the biggest complaints that I have heard is that even though they have spent time and effort implementing SAP ERP HCM they are not seeing any gains in getting their work done. In many cases they are still using the same paper forms and approvals that they had before. Managers often cannot find the needed forms on their companies’ intranet sites. They instead email HR directly about forms or in some cases completely bypass the forms and make the request directly through email. This amounts to a lot of extra work for the HR group and results in time taken away from their normal tasks to hunt down needed forms and relay them back to the manager.

In many cases, even if the form can be completed by the manager there is not a clear understanding of where the form should go next for approval or processing. In other cases clients have told me how in the middle of a process the form is often lost or thrown away with the copious amounts of printouts and paperwork managers and groups are given throughout the course of the business day. In these cases there is no way for a manager or for HR to easily track where the process is breaking down and items are being lost.

When the form receives all the needed approvals and makes it to processing for entry into the SAP system, it still takes hours or days to get to the form and make the needed changes within SAP ERP HCM. This often leads to a lot of frustration from employees, managers, and HR in that processes that could be completed in as little as one hour are taking days, weeks, or in some cases even months. Using SAP Workflow to enhance SAP ERP HCM can offer cost savings from efficiency gains, process tracking, autonomous background processing, and flexibility.

Jonathan Bartlett

Jonathan Bartlett is a senior consultant with Exaserv, Inc., helping companies develop and continuously maintain optimal and high-performing workforces. He specializes in the design and integration of workflow processes within Workforce Management and Talent Management, including Personnel Administration, Organizational Management, E-Recruitment, Learning Solution, and Performance Management. In his current role at Exaserv, Jonathan manages the technical support services team, bringing experience and knowledge to each client, finding ways to streamline their processes. Jonathan holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science.

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