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Understanding Schemas and Rules

Perhaps one of the most in-demand SAP HCM skill sets today is knowledge of the payroll process and an understanding of the SAP schemas. With more and more customers counting on their employees to support the payroll process after ‘go live’, this knowledge has become particularly invaluable. There does seem to be a mythology that you need to be a technical, as opposed to functional person to gain the necessary skills to understand the process. Permit me to dispel that myth with a recommended path to SAP Payroll.


Schemas control the payroll process and provide the step by step instructions to the payroll driver RPCALCx0. The best path to follow to gain a detailed understanding of the payroll process begins with understanding master data and the wage type concept. The recommended course for this is HR305, Master Data Configuration.


Target Audience:

  • Project Team Member
  • Consultants
  • Support personnel


Master Data will provide a broad understanding of the enterprise, personnel and organizational structures in HCM and the groupings which are essential to payroll. This course provides an opportunity to configure both the pay scale and wage type structures as well.


The next step would be HR400, Payroll Configuration. Payroll configuration provides ample customizing experience in identifying and operating the control mechanisms in the payroll process and immersion in payroll schemas and rules.   Other topics include:

  • Wage type valuation / Determining rates of pay
  • Factoring for proration
  • Understanding retroactivity
  • Encoding the characteristics of wage types
  • Functions, operations and rules crucial to the payroll process
  • Detailed coverage of the payroll log


Continue to further your depth of knowledge in payroll configuration and processing from the basic to the advanced level. If your payroll position also entails responsibility for the support of the process, which inevitably requires rule writing, the next step to consider should always be WNA11, Advanced Payroll Configuration. Attendance or knowledge of HR400 is an absolute prerequisite for this advanced course.


Target audience:

  • Experienced consultants, customers or internals with SAP payroll responsibility.


You’ll explore payroll operations in detail and learn to write custom personnel calculation rules using transaction PE02. Once the rules are written, the class covers proper placement in the schema using PE01.   Hands-on activities in the class also include:

  • Rule and schema branches
  • Using the constants table
  • Date operations


All of the courses above are delivered both virtually and in the classroom. Please take a look at the course schedules for delivery dates and their venues to choose the correct learning environment for your needs.   For more information and to review the current schedule of course offerings, please refer to

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