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Today at #SapphireNow: Learn about Employee Central integration with SAP HCM through NY Life case-study at 8 am in S320A

As Eva Woo mentioned in her blog, I am so excited that today New York Life and IBM will present their experiences on building the Employee Central integration for New York Life with the side by side model. When I met Shashi from New York Life yesterday, he talked about the close cooperation with SAP and with Wolfgang Dittrich who will be co-presenting the solution with them.

I asked Wolfgang the other day about what they will present on the side by side integration. New York Life will talk about consolidated side by side model of integration Employee Central with SAP HCM. They have migrated all the employees to Employee Central and yet, continue to use SAP HCM for the payroll and yet keep their existing interfaces.

I will not give the whole session away but I was told about some very exciting talking points they will go into details about (and some more points 😉 ):

  • What are the key integration decisions they took?
  • Which infotypes have they had to consider for integration?
  • The architecture of the integrated landscape
  • The key considerations pre and post implementation including best practises

The session will be wrapped up by Wolfgang who will give an overview of the product direction. You can visit the session in S320A at 8 am US Eastern timezone.


So what is Side by Side Integration?

As a customer considers cloud, they might want to move in a phased out manner to the cloud. There are several reasons why the customer might want to keep the SAP HCM:

  • There are several very specific processes they have already invested and built up in SAP HCM
  • The payroll is very stable and the company is very happy about this
  • There are several external interfaces that are already existing from SAP HCM
  • The company wants to deploy Employee Central in a phased out manner
  • The company needs a new HR solution in some of the countries for different reasons:
    • just did an acquisition and need an HR system that can still give a global view of the workforce
    • is opening its operations in a new country
    • is looking at replacing a legacy system or upgrading to a newer release of SAP
    • has very small subsidiaries where they do not want to deploy SAP HCM
    • want to go to a single vendor that can provide a global view of the workforce

Keeping this in mind, we built the side by side scenario to help the customers to transition to the cloud smoothly. We decided to offer the customer the possibility to transform in two different ways:

Side by Side Consolidated: All employees will be consolidated into Employee Central where all changes to their personal / organizational data could happen – however, some specific process (for e.g. payroll) will continue to run on SAP HCM.

Side by Side distributed: Employees of some of the countries will be moved to Employee Central while the employees of the other countries will continue on SAP HCM.

  • All employees will have a single point of access through the Employee Central.
  • Process will run in the system where the data is mastered – the employee/manager will access the process from Employee Central.
  • Changes will happen in the system which owns the employee’s data.
  • SAP’s integration will ensure the two systems are kept in sync
  • You can also connect multiple SAP HCM to one Employee Central to get a real global workforce overview

So what does this mean for the users?

Employees and managers will come into the home page and have a global overview of the workforce. They can see their teams and peers and search for any employee through Employee Central. They can look up the information and be able to access their workflows without worrying about what systems they are in.

When employees whose data resides in SAP HCM want to make a change, they will see through Employee Central, the SAP HCM processes that they are used to doing. The changes that the employee makes to the data get saved in SAP HCM and will be replicated into Employee Central through the integration. The employee can view the changed data and that is not all – they can even see the change history in Employee Central.

The managers will be able to access all employees from one single place. They can look up the data of their employees, they can trigger the processes for all their employees from the same system. They will follow the processes as seen – for e.g. if an employee Josef from US is on Employee Central and the employee Birgit from Germany on SAP HCM, when the manager runs a process for Birgit, he will be shown the SAP HCM process and for Josef, he will run the process from SAP HCM.


The users do not need to worry about switching between systems. We wanted to ensure that as customers, your transition is smooth and the users should not even have to worry about scrambling for information. The data models and the synchronization is kept upto date by us. We know both sides of the world and we ensure that the two systems can talk to each other very well.

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    • Hello Chiara, Thank you for the question – indeed you are right. The data is saved in SAP and then synchronized into EC as a part of the integration.