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New to SAP HCM? Where to Start?

New to SAP HCM?

Around 6 years back, I started my career in SAP HCM and one of the key questions I faced was – Where to start and How to start? – since SAP HCM is an ocean in itself. I did get a hand on some of the training ppts for Personnel Administration, Organization Management, Time Management and Payroll. However, these ppts were restricted to providing overviews.

Another thing I tried was going through However, I realized soon that it contains information more from end user perspective and I was looking information from solution consultant and configuration aspect perspective.

I even tried going through each node documentation in TCode SPRO but somewhere I felt lost. I had started with a technical upgrade project and then moved to a support project. One of my senior colleagues advised me to learn based on issues that came up in support tickets and I should try to learn all aspects related to the issue. It was a good advise and it helped me to a great extent in building my foundation.

However, I was still looking for something which can provide me a comprehensive overview of the core modules in SAP HCM. There are definitely books available from SAP Press but I find these books quite costly for Indian budget. Also, these books need to be shipped from US and you need to add another $70 towards shipping and handling charges.

Finally, one day while searching for books in Google, I came across the below books by P. K. Agrawal.

I bought paperback copies of these books in the year 2010 and was extremely satisfied after going through them. I definitely recommend these books because of the below benefits:

  • The books provide in-depth explanation of every topic and the content is very well structured.
  • The flow of topics is sequential and the explanation of concepts are in layman’s language.
  • Even the book Indian payroll is helpful for a person looking to learn payroll. The core components of SAP payroll applicable to all country payrolls remain the same like valuation, factoring, bank transfer, off-cycle payroll, deductions etc.
  • And each book costs less than USD $10.00, unlike the SAP Press books which are around USD $ 70.00.

These books remain my guide and reference points even today when I am stuck with something or some concept is not clear to me. When I went to Australia for work, I had carried all these books there. It did add extra weight to my luggage though (around 2.5 kgs).

These books can be ordered via amazon across the world. But what if you don’t wish to keep hard copies of the books and are interested in soft copies.

Even the soft copies option is available now. And that is what I did when I traveled to Gothenburg, Sweden for another assignment.

Below are the links for purchasing e-copies of the books:

If you are interested in taking a preview of these books, some sample chapters of these books are also available in Google Books.

I hope that these books will be helpful for all folks who wish to build a career in SAP HCM.

Warm regards,

Vivek Barnwal.


You can also refer to other knowledge artifacts created by me at the below link:

One Stop Shop of my Knowledge Artifacts in SAP HCM

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  • Hi Vivek,

    I have walked thru few of ur BLOGS posted really helpful to a beginner. Great Job 🙂

    Could you please share documents related to LSO  implementation related, if you have any requesting you to share with us.



  • Thanks aload for your valuable information sir.

    i just started my carrer as an HCM consultant. Now i am in the same position of where to start and explore.

    Once again thanks for your valuable advice. Request you to keep updating us with your experience

  • Hello Vivek ,

    Thanking you for essential info. I have been gone thru all 4 books for core modules. i got to learnt many points which i was aware .

    Warm regards ,



    Dear Viviek,

    Greetings for the Day,


    It is very excellent and motivation block for beginner. I am working in client place and handling the time management run time issue. I am looking some basic configuration in time management.  “Management needs all top level people do the clock in and clock out but once process salary there should no deduction”

    Below scenario are:

    • Lateness should show in attendance report but there is no deduction in payroll
    • Absent should show in attendance report but there is no deduction for absent days.
    • No overtime


    Madhurendra Roy


  • Hi Vivek.

    "One Stop Shop of my Knowledge Artifacts in SAP HCM " . It is really a good one  and i'm very enthusiastic to read each steps as a Consultant perspective. Really from the bottom of my heart its superb.