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Personnel Cost Planning and Simulation: quick intro and videos for beginners

I hope you all had a good weekend!

In order not to start the new week with too heavy a text, I thought I pick a topic relying heavily on video-demos 😎

“Personnel Cost Planning and Simulation” (which includes headcount planning – I’ll refer to it as just “Cost Planning” in this blog) has always been a SAP HCM component, which, in my personal experience, has been used primarily in the German speaking world. We have worked with many clients in Germany for cost planning implementation and optimisation projects, but rarely in other countries. Here in the UK even SAP HR experts often don’t even know that the module exists.

However, when I was speaking about the topic at the HR2013 conference in Amsterdam in June, I was surprised to see many delegates from lots of other countries attending and being very interested. That’s why I thought I should share a few taster infos with SCN members, who might also get interested in this tool.
In a nutshell, the tool can use data from various sources (see following diagram), applies a set of rules in you set in configuration and various BAdIs, and creates a plan (or several plans in several scenarios) for expected HR cost in future periods, which can be checked and amended by line managers for their respective teams and also be transferred to the CO module and or BI.

Data sources:

The process follows 5 steps, where the first 3 steps are performed by the central HR team and the 4th step is for line managers:


Well, there’s a lot I might want to explain about each step and even more about the configuration, BAdIs and best practise do’s and dont’s. However, as I promised above, I’m not going to bother you with all this now, but rather draw on the old teachers’ trick to get listeners excited and say “let’s just watch a video” 🙂

So, I want to start with the most exciting one, demonstrating a few easy steps in Detail Planning, the line managers’ tool (step 4 in the above diagram), which is based on WebDynpro for ABAP in the current EHP or on BSP in older versions (EHP4). Then I’ll follow up with videos for each data collection and the planning run (steps 2 and 3 in the above diagram), in case you want to go the whole hog. The videos have been created by our team and can be shared and used freely for educational or demo purposes, as long as you don’t change them and refer to the original YouTube channel.

I’d also like to hear from you to see how much this tool is used in various countries and in particular, whether you are using the detail planning for line managers. Please also share your challenges and questions, so I can follow up with further blog articles or documents.

Here are the videos:

1) Detail Planning for Line Managers (step 4), 5 min:

2) Data Collection (step 2), 8 min:

3) Planning run (step 3), 4 min:

Have a great, well planned week!

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  • Sven:

    Quite interesting article to say the least. Nicely done!

    By any chance, have you heard of the software, LiveCompare?

    Friends/family (working for Fortune 500 companies) have said this is a great tool to help them leverage existing SAP HCM. The software basically modernizes, automates HR and Payroll tasks such as HCM Support Packs and Custom Changes, Payroll Comparison, HCM Upgrades, and HCM Data Synchronization.

    Kind regards,


  • Hi Sven,

    Please I need you help with PCP. We are re-implementing HCM and my Consultant is proposing change in solution. The design she proposed would not work due to SAP PCP not being email notifications and workflow enabled.

    I have challenges with he solution she’s proposed and would like to share it with you privately for advice.



    • Hi Anthony,

      I’ll reply to your Linkedin message. But please note that it’s against SCN policy to share email addresses in posts, as it discourages public discussion others can learn from.  I suggest you take the email off before a moderator intervenes and maybe you can share the final outcome with the community.

      You can always make your email publicly available in your profile, if you want to.

      Kind regards


  • Dear Sven,

    Thanks for the detailed walkthrough. It was very informative.

    I have a doubt after watching the demo video though.. Is there a way for admin to do centralized detail planning here? I see from the demo that the web dynpro application view only lists one Cost unit at a time for editing the cost items. Is it possible to edit or create a cost item centrally for all cost units in one go by the admin? eg: 3% increment in Basic cost item for the whole organization in one go?

    • Hi Veera,

      as per standard functionality, the WDA detail planning is to be done per Orgunit. Central admins are still supposed to work in the backend.

      My hope is that this will change with HANA, as it would prvide the firepower to do such a change for >1000 people at a time with acceptable dialogue speed.

      In the past, we’ve built various custom solutions to make it easier for central admins, but that’s not standard.

      best wishes