OrgAudit (also referred to as DataQualityConsole) helps HR professionals to visualise data errors with the aim of pro-actively fixing data before they impact the business. It is one of four modules in the SAP Org Visualization by Nakisa (SOVN) solution extension.
This blog is an introduction to what OrgAudit is, and looks at the history as well as the reasons to use OrgAudit. Follow up blogs will look into building a business case, more detail on the currently available functionality, how to approach an implementation from a technical perspective and thoughts on how it might evolve in the future.
I believe OrgAudit offers strong, widely needed but under-utilised functionality. In over 14 years of working with SAP organisations I regularly meet organisations who recognise a weakness in the quality of their HCM data.
OrgAudit traces its roots to 2006 with the internal implementation of OrgChart at SAP. While SAP employees liked seeing the organisational structure they often commented, “this looks wrong”. The result was that Nakisa customised the internal implementation of OrgChart for SAP to report on data inaccuracies.
Realising the opportunity, Nakisa developed the concept into a standalone module which was released as part of SOVN version 3.0 in September 2010.
During the three 3.0 service packs the product evolved slowly as Nakisa worked closely with a small set of customers to assess how they used the product and what additional features they might benefit from having included in the next version. One such customer was Japan Tobacco International who spoke about their experiences at SAP HR 2012 (both in Las Vegas and Milan).
When 4.0 was released in November 2012, the module was renamed (to the end user as) OrgAudit. For more details on the module and licence changes between 3.0 and 4.0 then see Transitioning Between 3.0 and 4.0 in Visualization Solutions by Nakisa.
The current product version is SOVN OrgAudit 4.0 with the initial build numbered 0901005700 released 19th November 2012 onto SMP.
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What does it do?
OrgAudit extracts HCM data from SAP to analyse the data quality by applying quality assessment “rules”. The application is delivered with 48 rule templates which can easily be activated for immediate use. These rules cover Personnel Administration (PA), Organisation Management (OM) and (one rule for) Compensations Management (CM).
An example of a (PA) rule template is the rule to check each employee’s age. The rule uses their date of birth to calculate their age and reports an error if their age is below 18 or above 60 (these values are configurable).
As well as using the out of the box rules templates, you can also create your own rule templates.
End users access the application via a web browser and on first glance it is almost identical in look and feel to OrgChart. The main difference is in the type of data shown. For example you still see an organisational structure (org units to org units to positions and their incumbents) but within each org unit there are statistics on the number of data errors found within this point in the structure and below.
Users can view different statistics by changing views. There are two main types of statistics: number of errors, and score (with several sub-types of each).
In addition, OrgAudit can help advise you on how to resolve each type of error and track the progress in resolving errors over time, both at an individual rule level as well as rolled up to a variety of levels (e.g. by company code, personnel area).
Why use it?
OrgAudit is used by SAP HCM customers that recognise that data quality is either currently an issue or understand the impact that poor data quality will have on them in the future (e.g. in the run up to a reorganisation). It enables the HR team to monitor the quality of data in different parts of their organisation – by organisation unit, company code or personnel area, for example. These can also be tracked over time; whether you use this as a stick to beat, or a carrot to encourage, is entirely up to you! HR staff can become more effective by transitioning from spending significant quantities of their time fire fighting and checking data causing issues in processes, to spending their time pro-actively correcting it.
HR data quality is also important in terms of building the credibility of the HR function. Credibility takes a long time to build, but can diminish very quickly when users are confronted with missing or inaccurate data.
Won’t OrgChart itself improve my data quality?
Yes to some extent, but you can do more!
It is true, without doubt, that the most implemented module in SAP/Nakisa’s visualization suite is OrgChart and while I think having visibility of your organisation can in itself lead to an improvement in data quality, I think most organisations are missing an opportunity to make an even greater difference.
OrgChart is an important step, because it is designed to be used by all employees which results in more people able to “see” data errors and omissions, both in terms of data fields, but also with regards to keeping the structure correct (i.e. people highlighting that person X doesn’t report to person Y). OrgAudit goes a step further by applying rules to find errors without you having to look at them, or more importantly, before they cause you an error which then costs you time and money.
That’s it for now, but in subsequent blogs I will take a look at:
- Building a Business Case for OrgAudit
- Functionality available (by standard) in OrgAudit
- Technical aspects of implementing OrgAudit
- OrgAudit – Ideas to Improve OrgAudit
Read an independent review of DataQualityConsole (as it was known in version 3.0): ERP Executive review of OrgChart and DataQualityConsole by Jon Reed.