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     If there was ever a better, easier use-case for HCM Processes & Forms and furthermore, HCM P&F using the “old” Adobe Interactive Forms interface than bringing your company into compliance with the “new” Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability requirements, then I would love to see what it is! This is literally the easiest, fastest HCM P&F process I have ever built. But what is the urgent need for it and why do you care?

The Red Tape

     Well, under revised United States Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) regulations implementing Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 503), covering individuals with disabilities, employers must invite job applicants and employees to self-identify their disabilities on a standard “Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability” form prescribed by the agency. The final, “legal” form was approved on January 22, 2014.

     Under the new regulations, employers are required to survey their existing workforce within the first year of the employer’s next regular affirmative action program (AAP) update following March 24, 2014, the effective date of the regulations. Furthermore, the form must be provided to employees at least once every five years. That means if employers/companies have not already provided this to their employees/applicants, then it is high time to get on the ball!

     Here is more information about it direct from the government …. http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/section503.htm ….and here is the PDF form itself… http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/regs/compliance/sec503/Voluntary_Self-Identification_of_Disability_CC-305_SD_Edit1.24.14.pdf

In the SAP World

     So what does this mean for us working within the trenches (or “paradise” depending on your perspective haha) of SAP HCM? This kind of information is typically stored in infotype 0077 (Additional Personal Data) along with things like race and veterans status. I have heard of many companies as well as have my own clients that have looked for the best way to handle this to insure compliance (especially in large organizations where we are talking several thousands of employees and possibly thousands of new applicants daily as well!). Sure there are many possible solutions, but of course, HCM P&F is near and dear to my heart. haha

The HCM P&F Answer

     Let’s see here….so we need a PDF-like form where the employee can go online, make their selection, submit it and their HR specific record gets updated? Hmmmmm now why does that sound so familiar? …..where have I heard that before?…….hmmmmm….Oh yeh! That is EXACTLY what HCM Processes and Forms can do! So why not use it?!?!?!?! But now…..some other considerations.

     Although Adobe Interactive Forms (AIF) are considered “the old way” now in HCM P&F, they are actually the BEST solution in this case. Because our form requires very specific layout (font family, size, position, etc) and the US  government already provides it as a PDF, it is very easy to duplicate (import and modify with our needed data bindings) as a HCM P&F form. This is just not possible (and you will get arguments that it does not meet legal requirement either) if you use the “newer” FPM forms or other similar solutions. Yes, this is that one special case where AIF beats FPM hands down…there….I said it…you read it….let’s move on. haha

     Now, aside from using AIF, we do have some technical hurdles. As you should know if using HCM P&F, we rely on the decoupled (detached) infotype framework. In it, there are classes for our infotypes such as 0077. Within some of these, there are stricter “validations” than one might encounter in the “old” PA30 way of updating infotypes. Sadly, many of these “checks” will cause us grief for automating our IT0077 updates. Thankfully, SAP released some notes/updates related to this (thanks to my good friend Siddharth Rajora who is always on the “ball” for providing this information …look at notes note in sequence to apply: 1 – 1976932 2 – 1996041 3 – 1995948 4 – 1995949) which will modify some of the decoupled infotype class “validations” and other things that will need to be taken care of to properly handle our updates to IT0077 via HCM P&F. (side note: in some case, especially for clients not on correct component levels or can’t apply notes/packs as mentioned, I have seen them just create their own simple custom infotype with the fields needed to store the selection, dates, etc. and use that in place of IT0077 and the standard IT0077 related decoupled infotype classes….so it is even possible that way too but will require a bit more work)

HCM P&F Configuration

     Pretty much, all you do is map each field form the US IT0077 structure (make sure you use the US structure and not just the “common” XX one or you will hit Veteran Status errors) to your form scenario fields in SAP_PA. I go the extra step of flagging the “disability” date fields to be excluded from the operation since there are still “checks” in the standard 0077 class that will error/warn you about entering those dates. (NOTE: You may need to check your own requirements in case you need to actually set the disability related dates…disabled date/date learned….as they may require you writing your own backend service to set these correctly based on user’s selection…but even this is easy! You will notice these are checked in the class CL_HRPA_INFOTYPE_0077_US method CHECK_DISABILITY as well. Personally, I ended up writing a quick generic service to set/clear dates as needed based on the user’s selection so it met the check/validations “hardcoded” into the IT0077 US class. Adding that into configuration is easy enough so no need to go into it here.) Secondly, set your operation as a “change” on IT0077. Lastly, I add a “rule” assigned to this operation so that it only does the “change” if the user has selected an allowed value for the “disability status” (you need to check your own value range allowed…..but let’s say we only allow “X” , “N” or “A”). So my configuration looks like…

Overview

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/config_1_579005.jpg


SAP_PA operations

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/config_2_579007.jpg


SAP_PA fields

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/config_3_579006.jpg

Rules

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/config_4_579008.jpg

Unit Testing

….better known as “the proof is in the pudding”. haha….here you go..

(1) before running the form, we look at our employee’s IT0077 record via PA20 and get:

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/test_1_579009.jpg

(2) now we execute the form, make our selection, and submit.

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/test_2_579010.jpg

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/test_3_579014.jpg

(3) now looking again in PA20 at the employee’s IT0077 record, we can see our selection is there…..and in compliance! (haha)

/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/test_4_579015.jpg

Last Step

     I won’t get into it here (because in good ol’ consultant speak “it depends” haha), but your next step will be to make this available via your ESS solution. This might involve changes to your homepage framework or launchpad configuration (or elsewhere) and possibly portal content changes as well. But I will leave all that fun to you. Hey, I can’t do all the work for you….at least not for free! hahahaha

Conclusion

     Well, like I said…..(1) easy (2) quick (3) best use of AIF I have seen! I hope this helps as I know others are looking to get this knocked out quick as well. As always, I do it just to help others and will keep blogging if you keep reading (haha). Till next time…

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9 Comments

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    1. Christopher Solomon Post author

      It works really great…..and soooooo easy!

      …and feel free to add info on how folks should take it from here….ie. adding to launchpad or wherever….as I know you have written posts/blogs on this a LOT! 😉

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  1. Brandon Toombs

    Chris-

    Great job as always.  I (like probably a lot of people) was working on a disability form yesterday and also chose HCMPF as the obvious choice for this.

    We’ll forego how ridiculous it is for any kind of mandate for a PAPER format in the year 2014!  I also think that this exactly the kind of thing that SAP should be providing to its customers.  Or even just a cookbook for DIY.  That’s what the maintenance fee is for.

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    1. Christopher Solomon Post author

      It is odd that in their “legal changes packages” that this kind of stuff is not in there. I mean, it is just REALLY easy….moreso than even many of their “sample” processes….so how hard would it be to deliver? If not that way, then why not as part of one of the notes I mentioned.

      But then….I learned long ago not to try to understand SAP’s thinking in most cases. haha 😆

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      1. Christopher Solomon Post author

        @Brandon…. meant to respond to this… “We’ll forego how ridiculous it is for any kind of mandate for a PAPER format in the year 2014″……I bit my tongue as well. I first offered….”why don’t we use a simple FPM form with the selections and if needed, we can have the “paper form” as an attachment for reference” (to avoid AIF in case they didn’t have/want ADS installed or had no free licenses left). But of course, the legal department came down on this and said only if we made the FPM form look exactly like the PDF would they pass it…which we both know ain’t happening. Legal said it HAD to be exact font families, sizes and positions. Of course when I mentioned that current browsers and other devices allow the users to change all of that (via zoom, custom styles, preferences, etc) and we could not guarantee the presentation exactly no matter what we tried, I just got ignored and told “make it like the form”. hahaha Thankfully, SAP made it easy to pull in an existing PDF form to use as the basis for your own new layout, so I did not have to recreate the whole thing from scratch. I am sure my client’s wallet appreciates that too. haha

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        1. Srinath Sanamvenkata

          Hi Chris,

          We are trying to use the Disability flag only for the country GB/screen 2008 in IT0077 and of course, there is no COBRA or not related to any Benefits. We just want to bring the flag with a check box in PA20 as well as in Front End/UI5. Can I clear out the other two values in the drop down for Disability applicability and keep only Blank and X values?

          Thanks

          Sri

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          1. Christopher Solomon Post author

            “Can I clear out the other two values”…..from where? For this case, the process is country specific (as it uses the US country specific structure which has classes specific to handling these US legal requirements). From HCM P&F, a lot of IT0077 is likely to be country specific (just as screens in PA20/30 react the same way). So what/where exactly are you trying to do this?

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            1. Srinath Sanamvenkata

              Sorry, I missed that part in my question. I want to clear the other two standard values in the drop down while using the Disability status field only as a check-box in P&F/PA30 and not with any drop down values. At table (PA0077) level, all the checked cases would get X value and others would be Blank.But, the standard drop down has 4 values (Blank, X, N, A) when you click F4 for that field. (I am unable to find that T table where I can remove values N or A to ensure that users would not use them, as per client requirement).

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