Managing Alerts and Notifications in Employee Central
This blog post introduces you to the SuccessFactors Implementation Design Principle (SFIDP) document: (Employee Central: Managing Alerts and Notification) that was published a few months back. Implementation Design Principle documents are owned and managed by SAP SuccessFactors Product Management who engage and collaborate with select, interested partners along with SAP Professional Service to tap the rich implementation experience that is distilled in the document after a formalized product review process before wider publication.
Alerts and Notifications in Employee Central
Employee Central Alerts are period/time-based triggers based on specific conditions that create a To-Do alert or sends an email notification to the user with a configured message. Notifications are pre-defined messages provided to employees/administrators that specifies an approaching due date. This triggers a reminder for the users to take appropriate action that is required before the due date (In some cases after a date).
This document showcases typical business scenarios needing alerts and notifications with business rules in an efficient way. The document helps in understanding the job for alerts. This will also recommendations on how to avoid some common mistakes during configuration.
EC Alerts and notifications Job
One of the most important topics that needs to be understood well is the Job for alerts and notification.
This job is run every day, it executes the business rules that are attached to the portlets(example JobInfo) as “saveAlert” rules. It also is responsible to send the alerts to the end-users for those records that match the job run date (that is already in the alert object). If the data change of the due date requires approval, the alert is created only after the workflow is completed.
The crux of the whole concept of EC alerts and notifications depends on the Job for alerts and notification. Often it is a misnomer that the business rule for alerts is called when the portlet is saved, but this is not always true. The business rules for alerts are executed when the Job is run for the portlets based on HRIS elements like Job info. For MDF based alert events the rules are processed on the “Post Save” event.
There are 3 major steps of the Job
- Execute the business rules for Alerts
This goes through the portlets that are supported, picks up those records that are between the “last successful run date” and the “last modified date”
and the IF condition is evaluated in all the alert business rules. When the condition is met, the job creates an alert.
2. Trigger the alerts /notifications
In addition, the job compares system-date with the alerts that are due, if it is due it sends out the alerts in the To-Do /Take Action tile and the email notifications to the appropriate users as defined in the workflow.
3. Update the Alert objects for which the notifications have been sent
Once the email notifications/ To-Do list has been sent those records should be marked as sent (updates he status of the pending alert to completed) in the alert object. The job also picks up the MDF alerts in the alert object and creates the notifications for them when the job run date matches an alert effective day.
Recommendations on running the Job.
First Time only:
When the job is run for the first time (Specify a date) in the system, schedule a one-time job by specifying a reasonable start date. Please note that if the job is scheduled to date that significantly in the past the job can take a longer time to execute.
Setting after the first run:
After the first job, you can change the date to the Last successful EC Alert job run date. If you choose to run from the Last successful EC Alert job run date, the job will scan the records that are updated after the last successful run date of the job.
Scenario 1 – Alert Dynamic Group for Contract End Date in Job Information
In this example, an alert is triggered 14 days before the end of a Contract to users in two dynamic groups. Both an alert is created in the To-Do section as well an email notification is sent.
In Admin Center -> Manage Data, specify the alert message by entering the alert header and text.
- In Manage Workflow Group, create a dynamic group HR_RECRUIT_GROUP which includes a group of recruitment users.
- Create another group called HR_ADMIN_GROUP that includes 4 HR administrators.
In “Manage Organization, Pay and Job Structures” transaction, set up the workflow. In this example, the alert is sent to the dynamic groups HR_RECRUIT_GROUP and HR_ADMIN_GROUP. They are specified in Step 1 and Step as recipients of alerts. In order to send an email to both groups, they are also defined in the CC Role section. As a result, all three recruitment users and all four HR Administrators will get an alert in the Take Action tile as well as an email notification.
Go to Configure Business Rules, assign the workflow and message to the business rule. The condition in this scenario is to create an alert 14 days before the contract ends. The alert is created when the contract end date has been changed for an active employee and today’s date is more than 14 days before the contract end date. It checks for future records (end-date after today) or current record where the event start date was in the past, but today fulfills the criteria to trigger the alert. The alert is triggered when it is exactly 14 days before the contract end date.
In Manage Business Configuration under Trigger Rules section, add the business rule created in the previous step to HRIS-Element Job Information (jobInfo) as Event Type saveAlert.
Note that if the contract end date is extended before it expires, the original alert is deleted. A new alert based on the new contract end date becomes the active alert.
There are many scenarios that are mentioned in the Implementation design principle document like the ones listed below.
|Scenario||Alert on Object||Action Triggered|
|1||Job Information – Contract End Date (Already covered above)||Create an alert and email notifications to two dynamic groups 14 days before Contract End Date.|
|2||Global Assignment – Planned End Date||Alert a manager 5 days before the global assignment ends for the direct report. The alert helps to prepare the employee to return to the home assignment.|
|3||Position (MDF Object) – custom date field||Send an alert to a manager and a dynamic group14 days before the end date of a temporary unapproved position. Position can either be extended or convert to a permanent position.|
|4||Work Permit Expiry Date||Trigger multiple alerts before the work permit expires. One alert is sent 3 months before and another alert 1 month before the expiry date. Multiple alerts help to ensure legal documents are renewed in time to avoid time gaps in the work permits.|
|5||Time Off – Return from Leave||A manager receives an alert 2 days before the direct report returns from a paid leave.|
|6||Time Off – Duration of Leave||When an employee has reached 25 days into a 12-month leave, an alert is sent. The alert is used to monitor leaves that have reached a threshold.|
|7||Work Order End Date||An alert is triggered when the work order is going to end in 90 days using the Off-Cycle Event Batch.|
The document also talks about some leading practices on the following topics
- Multiple countries with different document types and alert days
- Best way to handle Global Assignment for alerts
- How to debug an alert and test
- How to make sure there are no duplicates in alert object
- How to avoid inactive employees
- How to avoid alerts created for historical records
- Orphaned Alerts
- How to stop Alerts
- What Not to do in Business Rule for Alerts
For more details please read Implementation design principle document .
This Implementation design principle document had valuable contribution from SAP SuccessFactors partners towards authoring and include Imelda Schwenger from HRIZONS
I would also acknowledge Mary McHale-Roe from SAP for helping and reviewing the document.
We hope this blog post helped you get acquainted with the basic understanding of the concepts & use cases defined and discussed in the SFIDP. We recommend you to further explore the document for a full-fledged discussion that will aid you in better product implementation as well as help you align with the industry leading practices. We look forward to your valuable comments/feedback/queries on this blog post.
Thank you so much for this blog!
Thank you for the detailed information and this is really help full. I have question, we have done the config (Same as above) and there is case where we have created employee secondment record on e. g 20 Jun 2020 and end date will be 30 Nov 2020 and due to some reasons employee moved to different position before secondment end date (20 Aug 2020) and manager had received the "Alert notification" for secondment end on 23 Nov 2020 (Reminder before 7 days), why this behaviour, when employee moved to different position and secondment record is delimited and system still sends the reminders to manager.
Can you please help me on this...
I am not able to fully understand the config details below. The secondment end date - is this a date on Job info or ? What was the rule design? . Was there more than one time slice. If there are more than one time slice was this date updated etc.
I would advice to check these details and see how the alert was generated. This would give you some possibilities on why the alert was generated
Thank you Sharath, Secondment end date is date field in the job info and also, when i check employee job info history, it has 3 time slices (Started after secondment assignment start date) and latest time slice delimited the secondment end date and where old time slices still have the secondment end dates. Is this the cause for alert getting triggered and rule is same as above. Thanks
Good morning KS Viswanatha,
Were you able to fix the error you had?
I am facing the same error an still could not fix it.
Yes I do and please refer the below link for more details and by using this options you can delete old alerts.
Url - https://help.sap.com/doc/62fddbd651204629b46bbccbabf886ba/cloud/en-US/7f1140a62af9465fa8a93691000b0280.html
Thanks for your answer!!
Thanks for the blog. Is there any limitation on number of roles that can alert notifications? For example, I have setup work permit expiry date alert where the alert message should go to employee and his manager. But only employee is getting the notification but not manager. However, manager(Same user) is getting other notifications like workflow sent back, workflow approval notifications etc.
Thank you Sharath, very nice and useful post ! I wonder if there is a workaround to one specific scenario not covered by this functionality: Send alerts based on Dependents Portlet .
Any ideas ?
Thanks and regards,
Will alerts set on JobInfo trigger only if there is a job info record inserted and saved, or regardless?
Job info save - Save the data but will not execute the business rule . The Rule is only executed by the Job as explained in the document.
Insert or take action - Same behavior
Can the same alert rule check on different fields if something has changed? Therefore have Else-If statements?
I have a rule that checks for Contract End Date from employees in on country and on a mandatory Medical check Date for employees of another country? Does that work?
In testing, it seems that only the Contract End Date portion of the rule gets triggered even though the Med Check Date is also true for another employee in the system and the job/rule should also create an alert for this employee
2nd Question: Can I enable the SaveAlert rule also for country specific job info in the business configuration or only in the global Job Info BC?
I have followed the same steps to configure contract end date and have created job in Provisioning too, but the tagged recipients aren't getting alerts and notifications
Could you please help me
This is really helpful!!
We have a requirement where an alert message need to be sent to a Manager about a New Hire (Future Dated Direct Report to the Manager) joining in a month. Is it possible to use the same config for Future dated hires and send notification to the Manager?
This should be possible.
HI Sharath T N
This is very helpful! thank you very much for your share!
do you know if there is a reminder notification for the To-Do list in employee central?
for the uncompleted To-Do task, We have recently recevied an email "Please complete these items on your To-Do list as soon as possible:... "
I couldn't find any useful KBA or any document about this issue except this 2502972 - How to edit the Nudge email notification
If there is such a reminder where could we control the timing of the notification?
thank you in advance, any information will be very helpful for us.
The notification will be sent when the alert is sent. No other reminders after the alert is sent.
Sharath T N
Thank you for your quick reponse! really appreciate it!!
So there isn't a notification to remind all To-Do list, is my understanding correct?
as you known, there is a reminder notification can be manually triggerred by a manager from My Team. I am wonderring if it will be sent automatically by a batch because our client mentioned they have recevied an email "Please complete these items on your To-Do list as soon as possible:... "
Hi every one!
I found an scenario where we need to remove the alert when the date is field cleared. For example, when the contract end date is set as 30/09/2022 the alert is also set. But when this field is cleared because the employee contract changes to permanent, the notification is not removed. So I used ELSE in the rule without Alert.Effective Date. Is that correct for you?
Did you solve this issue. I'm also facing the same.
@Sharath T N: Please advise what to do when the employee contract changes to Permanent before the contract date expires because the recipient is still receiving the alert notification. Below is my rule. We added Delete old Alert Flag in then statement to delete old alert when the contract end date is extended/changed but I assume that will not fix the scenario when we remove the contract end date to make the employee permanent.
Hi Pradeep Ragunathan,
Yes, I'm using an else with no alert effetive date, just to delete Pending Alert.
I'm not receiving alert on to do but receiving email.
Manager is both approver and cc role still I don't see it, could you help
I have a question i have written a rule to trigger alert when employee gets terminated, job runs and says 1 EC ALERT triggered but no email and no to do.. any idea why?
Please check in the transaction Manager Alerts if a notification is being created.
other things to check is if the person in the workflow step is being derived or not or the system is not finding it.