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Tips for designing and upgrading your global HR systems

by Jens Ejsing

May 25, 2011

This HR tip comes directly from a presentation I am delivering called “How to design or upgrade your global HR systems to proactively facilitate the international growth and profitability of your company at the upcoming HR 2011 event 7-9 June in Amsterdam.

Challenge: Crucial HR Questions from a Global CEO


  • How many employees do we have?
  • Where are they?

Finance & Controlling

  • What do they cost?

Jobs & Qualifications

  • What do they do?
  • What skills do they have?
  • What skills do they need?

Talent Management

  • Where should the training budget be allocated to get the highest ROI?

Cross-analytics/Business Intelligence

  • Where should the company reorganize to increase profit margin?
  • Where should the company build its next factory to get the highest ROI from its workforce?

To design a global SAP ERP HCM system, you must consider the four pillars of any IT-system

  • Architecture
  • Processes
  • Data
  • Technology

These decisions are crucial to ensure the ability to answer the CEO’s questions


  • Arch itectural considerations
  • Process considerations


  • SAP ERP HCM Global Template


  • Technical considerations

 Design Considerations: Architecture

  1. Completely Decentralized
  2. Partly Decentralized
  3. Completely Centralized

Decentralized Architecture: Advantages

  • Locally independent
  • No effort in coordination with other systems
  • Country specifics are easy to implement
  • Independence in release strategy
  • Downtime is easily manageable

Decentralized Architecture: Disadvantages

  • No synergies between the teams and the processes
  • Redundant systems in the system landscape
  • Huge efforts for hardware infrastructure
  • Incompatible systems and interfaces
  • Different releases

Decentralized Architecture: Recommendation

Global reports

  • Extracting, merging, and analyzing global data is often very labour intensive
  • Therefore, rarely done

Data from decentralized systems

  • Very often incompatible
  • Cannot be used for reliable reporting, analysis, and decision making

A completely decentralized HR system does not give HR (reliable) answers to the CEO’s questions

To see this presentation in its entirety attend HR 2011 7-9 June in Amsterdam! For more information on the event and to register visit

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