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Author's profile photo Rama Rana

Succession with MDF Position-Based Method (Import)

SuccessFactors has grown over the years, at the same pace, Succession Planning nomination methods are taking shape.

In this blog, I am explaining the case study of MDF position-based nomination method without Employee Central. This method has feature to maintain effective date record over role-person based method.

Positions in the SuccessFactors can be managed via automated sync process or import depending upon the various scenarios.

Import Process study has been described in this blog.

Sync Process – I will be explaining system behaviors in my next blog.

Note: Only one process must be used NOT both as it may result in unnecessary new position code generation.


Blog is all about choosing preferred way of managing positions in MDF Position-based Method.

Let’s take import scenarios here for import:


  • Positions are maintained in Parent HRIS system
  • Succession Planning will be done for few Employees in the SuccessFactors
  • Positions are not maintained in SuccessFactors
  • Every year a list of users is selected from Parent HRIS system for Succession Planning via SuccessFactors


  • Select MDF Position-based nomination method
    • Note: MDF Position based method is preferred over role-person based method going forward


  • Manually import only those positions for which Succession Planning is needed
    • Note: this requires comparison for Old and New succession planning population and maintenance of positions regularly via file import or UI (from Manage Positions) accordingly


For example: Active/Inactive user position, change of Supervisor, Vacant position with or without Successor and New hire on vacant position or new position Id generation


  • Periodic reconciliation of Position file and users are required hence customer needs to be communicated clearly about this


  • Key Position field on top of position Title in Succession Org Chart will be linked with Position Criticality picklist of Position Object, hence, Talent Search of Key Position Boolean field will not fetch results in this case.

I have listed down various events in the organization and steps to maintain Positions manually:

Steps Import Method or via UI (Manual)
1 Admin gets the list of Succession Planning population from Business for Current Year
2 Admin checks the list and compares with Last year positions list
3 If Admin finds any new user present in the list
Check if the new employee hired is a replacement in the succession planning population?
Yes–> Ask for the details of terminated employee–> assign the same position code to new user with start date in the import file
No –> Assign new position to the user
4 Any user doesn’t exist in the new list as compared to the last year list?
Check if the employee is terminated and who is occupying this position of inactive user
Check if this position needs to be made vacant (in case no one is occupying it) –>Remove incumbent data with effective date and mark To be Hired as “Yes” in MDF position import file
Check the criticality of the position before decision of DELETION
5 Is there any change in Position Title/Manager/Department?
Make changes according to the effective date of change in the import file
If Manager is changing –> make effective date change in the position import file with new manager details
If user is transferred from one job title to another–> check if the old position title needs to be made vacant or replaced by another user or updated or deleted?
Vacant–> Remove incumbent data with effective start date and mark To be Hired as “Yes” in MDF position import file
Replaced by another user–> Add user in incumbent field with effective start date
Update –> make changes in the same position title with the effective start date
Delete–> check the criticality of the position before decision of DELETION


Conclusion: I have tried to collect import points based as per the above-mentioned case where every year succession planning is done on the selective population and position data was coming from parent HRIS system (out of Successfactors).

Please feel free to add comments and corrections, if any.

In my next blog, I will be sharing behaviors of position sync process.

Watch the space for more…

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      Author's profile photo Berlinda Mensah
      Berlinda Mensah

      Very good information Rama, thanks for sharing!

      Author's profile photo Rama Rana
      Rama Rana
      Blog Post Author

      Thanks Berlinda!

      Author's profile photo Su Ling Tan
      Su Ling Tan


      I have a question as our company is using the exact MDF position-based import method. However, our import is not able to update the field Higher-Level Position in Position record. The reason is the parent or higher position is with a younger effective date as new incumbent takes up higher position recently. Any idea to have the field Higher-Level Position updated properly ?