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When browsing and flipping through SAP SuccessFactors materials, docus and videos I came across the expression Core HR….and was surprised to find Employee Central and Payroll as the Core HR functionality!?

What is Core HR in terms of SAP SuccessFactors?

And what is ment by Core HR functions and processes by HR Managers or CHROs?

When answering these questions, one should also ask: What is considered the main purpose of HR?

Is it really keeping records of employees, payrolling or time and attendence like in old days when the role of HR was just restricted to administration?

Of course: wages have to be paid on time, and employee records have to be accurate and current. But I don’t think anyone in today’s business would restrict HR to that definition – and certainly not any HR professionals.

When asking HR Managers or CHROs, they would state Recruiting, Onboarding, Competence and Performance Management, Succession and Development, Learning Management, Compensation/Variable Pay as Core HR processes or functions. Because these are the processes that create value for the company.

This later definition you may also find in HR publications and HR research papers – one example is shown in the following illustration:


These models may differ in details, but they all have the following 3 process categories in common:

  • Strategic HR Processes (Planning, Controlling, etc.)
  • Core HR Processes (Talent Management/Hire to Retire)
  • HR Support Processes (Administration, Time, Payroll, etc.)

So: Am I the only one getting confused with the SAP SuccessFactors terminology?

When talking to business people – rather than to IT – I would use their terms and expressions when discussing HR.

What do you think?

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  1. Sarah Moore

    Thanks Eva, this is a great question to ask.

    The terminology and meaning of Core HR, is like a lot of definitions, dependant on where the definition is being used and its business context. For example, the word ‘system’ can mean a ‘way of doing a function’ or it can mean ‘an IT system’. It gets very confusing.

    What is the SuccessFactors definition of Core HR? I have not been able to find one!

    When you find the SF definition, then you need to provide a ‘translation’ for the organization.

    For example when dealing with SF, ‘in SF, we record Core HR details’.

    The business translation might be – ‘in our HR system, which is SF, we record personal details, position information and your organization contact details’ (or whatever the pre-defined Core HR definition is for the organization).

    Thanks

    Sarah

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