SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics Early Adopter Program: Is It for You? 

By on August 30th, 2019 in HCM Technology Solutions

SAP SuccessFactors customers: SAP has announced that you can sign up to be part of an Early Adopter program (SAP S-ID required) for People Analytics, embedded edition. Should you apply for this? Read along to learn more details, including my own experience as an early adopter customer.

What is SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics? 

The graphic below shows what SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics includes:

successfactorsThe Early Adopter program is only for People Analytics, embedded edition. People Analytics, embedded edition will replace existing Operational Reporting tools, including Canvas/ORD, Table/AdHoc, and Tile-based Dashboards. People Analytics, embedded edition is included with your existing SuccessFactors modules with no additional license fee.

In my mind, the key features of the embedded edition are:

  • Simplified reporting with a single data model across all SAP SuccessFactors modules
  • Modern visualization tools from SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC)

The planned General Availability (GA) launch of People Analytics, embedded edition is Q4 2019. Note that Learning, Payroll, and Recruiting Marketing will not initially be part of the embedded edition until sometime in the future.

What are the benefits of this Early Adopter program?

I see three key benefits of this Early Adopter program:

  • Selected customers will be able to create reports and visualizations with People Analytics, embedded edition in preview and production environments prior to the GA launch.
  • Selected customers will have the opportunity to interact with and learn from SAP Product Managers and other Early Adopter customers.
  • Selected customers will potentially be able to influence the People Analytics, embedded edition roadmap.

Do you want to be an Early Adopter for People Analytics?

Think about your team and their tendencies while you consider the following questions:

  • Are you excited about learning new technologies and willing to explore new software without a lot of guidance?
  • Have you been struggling with building certain reports and/or dashboards with the existing reporting tools?
  • Are you willing to budget extra time for your team members to explore the tool while utilizing time from their day-to-day tasks?
  • Are you eager to provide constructive feedback to SAP?

If you answered yes to any of these, you may be a good candidate for the program.

My Experience With Early Adoption

When SAP SuccessFactors launched Advanced Reporting for Employee Central several years back, my employer at the time was one of the first beta customers of the tool.

We used the then-new Advanced Reporting to recreate our reports that were created in AdHoc Report Builder. It was great to try out many new features that were not available in AdHoc and really push the limits of what we could deliver to our internal customers. That said, being an early adopter was a significant time commitment. It takes extra time and effort to learn new a new tool, and there was not a lot of documentation in those early days. We also ran into several bugs along the way; we spent many hours carefully documenting our issue reports and waiting for fixes from the engineering team.

Eventually we rolled out these new reports globally and enabled our HR teams across the enterprise to support their local customers. With our expertise gained as a beta customer, our depth of understanding of the tool and its capabilities became very strong. In the long term, our extra efforts during the beta period paid off nicely.

My Recommendation 

Joining this Early Adopter program can be a great opportunity to build expertise and gain additional value from your HR data. Perhaps you have the opportunity to get a “quick win” with a report or an analysis that is difficult or not possible to do with today’s reporting tools. If anything, you’ll have a head start in transitioning to the new platform.

Be mindful that participating in the Early Adopter program will take some extra time while other deliverables and tasks could lag. Be sure to set proper expectations, and you can positively move your People Analytics program forward.

The Details

Program Details (SAP S-ID required): https://community.successfactors.com/t5/Reporting-Analytics-and/SAP-SuccessFactors-People-Analytics-Embedded-Edition-Early/ba-p/233982

Application Link (SAP S-ID required): https://influence.sap.com/sap/ino/#campaign/1972

Remember that the deadline to join the program is August 31, 2019.

Good luck!  Reach out with any questions or leave a comment below, and I will respond directly to you.

Michael Hoekstra

Mike Hoekstra is a Senior Reporting and Analytics Consultant and a Human Capital Management (HCM) thought leader at GP Strategies. Mike has over 20 years' experience in software and people technologies, including HR, vendor management, and eCommerce systems.

Using strategic and technical advice, he guides global HR teams on their people analytics journey, and he leads SAP SuccessFactors Reporting, Workforce Analytics, and SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC) implementations. Mike's functional HR experience includes roles as an Analytics Analyst and HR Business Partner at a global consumer goods company.

Mike maintains SAP SuccessFactors certifications in SuccessFactors Reporting, Workforce Analytics/Planning—Functional, and Workforce Analytics—Technical. He holds an MBA from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, and a BSE from the University of Michigan.
Michael Hoekstra

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