I recently moderated a web forum with SAP HCM Expert Jeremy Masters on the new features of EhP5 and how to make the most of it for your HR organization.
For the full Q&A, you can view the questions from Insider Learning Network members and Jeremy’s responses in the HR forum, or read excerpts from the transcript of the Q&A, below.
What SAP enhancement package 5 means to your SAP HCM install:
An exclusive Q&A today with HCM Expert and Worklogix consultant Jeremy Masters on how to make the most of EhP5 for your HR organization.
Amy Thistle (Moderator):
Welcome to today’s forum on EhP5. Thanks to everyone for joining us, and thanks for taking these questions Jeremy.
We have a few questions already posted, so Jeremy will be responding to these shortly.
How do we create ESS and MSS(EHP5) Home page using Launch Pad (LPD_CUST)? Do we need to create Role and Instance for each application? Please Advice. Thanks.
Jacob - Great question. The new LPD_CUST transaction will be new for us all. The technology has been leveraged from Procurement and some other areas of SAP but this is the first time it has applied to HR. The new tcode replaces portal iView configuration and the old Home Page Framework. So any existing Home page framework configuration will (unfortunately) need to be re-done.
If a company needs to migrate from ESS, MSS EHP4 to EHP5, what are the most important things to take into consideration? Thanks in advance.
When migrating to ESS and MSS, the biggest items to consider:
1) New functionality offer - there are entire modules like ECM (Compensation Management) that have been re-vamped.. the backend is the same ECM module, but the front end is completely re-written. so if you are live with Comp on ehp4 ,there will be some change management involved to ensure you transition smoothly.
2) New framework - the Launchpad Customizing now replaces the HomePage Framework (HPF) that was so prevalent in earlier ESS implementations is gone! it's now replaced by tcode LPD_CUST where a business analyst can configure the services and orient the look-and-feel of the self service offering
3) New technology (Web Dynpro ABAP) - most services have now been converted to Wedb Dynpro for ABAP. Only a few are left (basic MSS, benefits enrollment, etc.) but this is where SAP has landed in terms of technology of choice. It is definitely here to stay.
What are the alternatives to enterprise portal for ESS in EhP5?
If someone is implementing ESS for the first time, what would be your suggestions and places to start?
Hi there - The most common alternatives are portals like SharePoint (Microsoft) or WebSphere (IBM). With the new EnHP5 functionality, all SAP services are be called from these portals in an easier fashion. For ESS, for example, you need to activate business package "HCM, ESS on Web Dynpro ABAP" (technical name: HCM_ESS_WDA_1) in order to use the new services that can be used (regardless of using an SAP Portal or another vendor's portal).
You can get more info about this business package from here:
Hi - I would like to know how the time sheet (CATS) will look in EhP5 as I understood that SAP will change from WD4J to ABAP. We have both entering own hours as well as approval and substitution. Currently, e.g. master cost center is not defaulted in ESS as in backend to have activity type lists and the approval is quite clumsy.
We are implementing it and would like to have quick views to avoid unnecessary tailoring now as we have preliminary plan to update EhP4 > EhP5 next Easter.
Hi Pia - I would reach out to your SAP contact for information on this. I do have some screen shots that I can share as well... let me know if you want me to send you.
Hello - As I understand it, all ESS services were now "translated" from WD Java to WD ABAP. On top of that, SAP makes the Netweaver Business Client available from the ABAP Web Application Server. Does it mean we have actually 3 deployment options as of enhancement pack 5:
- ESS on Web Dynpro Java through the Netweaver Portal (same as before)
- ESS on Web Dynpro ABAP through the Netweaver Portal (does SAP deliver a business package for the portal?)
- ESS on Web Dynpro ABAP through the Netweaver Business Client
Is it also possible to have a mix of WDJ & WDA services working on the Netweaver Portal (say an customer has existing Leave Request on WDJ and wants to implement Personal Data on WDA)?
I would also like to know if the same applies for MSS? Do we now have for instance a UWL in Web Dynpro ABAP? Thanks in advance!
Hi Julien - Great questions.
Yes, all the ESS services have now moved to Web Dynpro ABAP in EhP5.
You asked: "ESS on Web Dynpro ABAP through the Netweaver Portal (does SAP deliver a business package for the portal?)" ---> yes, and you can find info on it here: help.sap.com/erp2005_ehp_05/helpdata/en/...
As far as mixing services, you should still be able to do that, as long as they exist on different (merged) pages or (merged) roles. Same would apply for MSS.
I would like to know what kind of impact EhP5 will have on the SAP Learning Solution. Will there be added functionalities? Better display options? New roles?
Any help would be welcome.
Hi Sasha - In EhP5, the new learning functionality is only around BI and dashboards only. You can follow this link to get more info on what is now available. For the dashboarding, I am not sure you need Xcelsius or not, but you can reference the detail here: help.sap.com/erp2005_ehp_05/helpdata/en/...
So... unfortunately, no improvements in usability or new roles for you to leverage. That said, future Enhancement Packages from SAP are promising for better usability across all modules.
What can you tell me about Time Approval, or Time Entry/Time Sheets for that matter. I have seen some cursory information that EhP5 has updates to Time Approval. Is there anything new in the mobile application area around Time Management (Entry or Approval)?
Hi Randy - There's a ton of new stuff around Time on ESS and MSS. SAP has totally re-vamped their CATS and Leave request functionality. Specifically, around your question for time entry and approval... you can reference the new functionality here:
Both are new Web Dynpro ABAP iViews. Web Dynpro ABAP is the technology platform for (at least) the near future at SAP, so all MSS and ESS will be migrated by EhP6 to this technology (Benefits being one of the last ones coming out in EnhP6).
Hello Jeremy - We already have the ECM module (EhP4) that includes some ï»¿ï»¿Web Dynpro Java developments that we did for the budgeting and the planning board. How would like to know what are the things that will need to take into considerations, when we decide to migrate to EhP5 (Web Dynpro ABAP)? Thank you!
Hi Maria - Good question. Unfortunately, no Java changes that you made in your EhP4 implementation can be leverage-able when migrating to EhP5. That's essentially throw-away code
The good news is that all the backend work that you did (BAdIs, function modules, and other ABAP objects) can all be leveraged.
The other good news is that customers are seeing the new EhP5 planning worksheet as having much higher usability then the previous versions. The planning worksheet now comes with embedded analytics as well (you don't need BI for this), as well as the ability to export to Excel and plan on either a tabbed-style (either one tab or several), or via individual employee planning. Hope this helps (and good luck)!
We are looking to provide new functionality in the Compensation module for salary planning and have heard there is a wealth of new functionality in EhP 5 but information has been hard to track down to obtain specifics. Can you identify a couple of the major improvements here outside of WDabap? Thank you,
Hi Jacinda - Great question - and a big hello to my friends at FMC.
The biggest enhancement outside of the new front end (again, Web Dynpro ABAP) is a new "Compensation Process Support" program. This program allows customers to refresh the budget during the planning cycle for each plan. In your configuration, you can now choose bottom-up, or top-down budgeting. If the former is chosen, then this new refresh program will update the budgets based on employee eligibility and employee movement (i.e. a transfer from one org to another). There are some other nice features, but this one is by far the most robust.
Hello Jeremy - Are there any notable improvements/new functionalities coming with ehp5 in the areas of E-Recruiting and Objective Settings & Appraisal? Thanks in advance!
Hi Julien - Within Performance Management (Objective Settings & Appraisals), there's only improvements with the "predefined" template and not the "flexible" template. You can see what improvements have been done by following this link:
As far as E-Recruiting, there are new web services available to integrate SAP E-Recruiting with SAP ERP hiring a candidate. They have also added an email verification functionality whereby a candidate would receive an email to their given email address to confirm identity. There are a few other enhancements as well in E-Recruiting.
Hi, I would like to how budgets in Enterprise compensation Management module are handled in EP5?
Hi Kumar - Well that's a big question!
The core budgeting functionality has not changed in EhP5. In other words, EHp5 still uses the budget structure (budget unit to budget unit) which is taken as a snapshot time of the org structure.
The big enhancement is this refresh program that I mentioned to Jacinda before - it essential fills a gap that most customers have long had with the ECM functionality. Dynamic movement of allocated and spent values as employees lose/gain eligibility and move from org to org.
Unfortunately, it still does not handle situations where you move an org unit under another org unit during the cycle. Also it does not handle new orgs that are created during the planning. What this means is that you need to work closely with your HRIS and Compensation teams to make sure everyone understands the implications of this.
Hello Jeremy - To utilize the new Leave Request in EhP5, may I know:
a. whether infotype framework applies to time management infotypes ?
b. are there any new IMG configuration options to take note besides those already delivered or configured for the previous version of Leave Request in WD Java ? Thanks.
Hi Kir –
a. yes, the infotype framework should apply to time management infotypes as well.
b. as far as new IMG activities, good question- I don't know... but will reach back out to you if I have a chance to activate the business function.
Good luck with the new functionality!
Can you explain what is required or necessary to access ESS/MSS via the Netweaver Business Client instead of through the portal? Thanks.
Hi Kir - The best documentation on this can be found here:
Any notable improvements/new functionalities coming with ehp5 in the areas of Benefits especially open enrollment?
Hi Praveen - Nope, beside some new services for Work and Life events, there is nothing for benefits in ehp5. the Benefits enrollment will be overhauled (in the Web Dynpro ABAP technology) in ehp6 (this is unofficial, but it's the word on the street...)
Hi Jeremy - What are your thoughts on using ESS for Web Dynpro ABAP with the NetWeaver Business Client (NWBC) functionality in EHP5 over the Internet? Are there any disadvantages with not having the Enterprise Portal for Internet usage of ESS?
Also, have you heard of any problems with using ESS for Web Dynpro ABAP and NWBC? Thank you.
Hi Jay - Truthfully, the "jury is still out" on how well the NetWeaver Business Client (NWBC) functionality will integrate over the web. I don't really have many stories (war or success) to relay to you, so I apologize for that.
As far as disadvantages with not having the Enterprise Portal for Internet usage of ESS, the one that sticks out the clearest will be the challenge customers will have with ensuring there is uniformity across the portal (look-and-feel, navigation)... Once you have other portals and intranets involved, we might be back to where we were 10 years ago when we had ITS services appearing without the consistency we can achieve (in branding) from the SAP Portal.
Hi Jeremy - As a client who is upgrading from 5.0 to 6.0 - Is there a document, training class and/or book that summarizes the changes? I do recall that SAP did this in the past. Thanks!
Hi Melissa - SAP has been really good about providing Ramp-up and release notes for the EhP5 stuff. Your best place to start would be (believe it or not) on help.sap.com. For example, all the new business functions for HCM are explained here:
I would also ask your SAP rep for any ramp-up materials that are out there. For example, I know the ECM solution in ehp5 is well-documented through a series of PDF documents that explain in pretty good detail each of the new functionalities.
Hi Jeremy - After activating EHP5 WDA ESS (HCM_ESS_WDA_1) will all the Web Dynpro Java applications still function exactly as it did before the activation.
Steyn - That's a great question. And I don't have an answer. In theory, it should not affect anything, but I have had experiences where a business function has shut down some previous functionality.
Hi Jeremy - Has any of the EHP4 MSS Web Dynpro Java applications been rewritten in Web Dynpro ABAP? (e.g. General Data, Team Viewer...)
I've heard that's coming soon, either as a point release to ehp5, or in ehp6, but it will definitely be here soon.
Do you have any idea how long an implementation would take moving from EhP3 to EhP5? Thanks.
Hi Francesca - Boy, that's a good question! ... and it's totally contingent on the amount of self service you already have implemented (Needed disclaimer there )
I would ballpark anywhere from 2-5 months, depending on whether you are just doing a technical upgrade, or if you need to "re-implement" some of the functionality (e.g. Compensation). This is a swag but gives you some level of effort.
We have only done EhP1, can we skip all the others and go right to 5? The only thing we were really looking at was on EhP3 address formatting. Or can we do just 3 and go right to 5? Thanks!
Hi Doris – Great question. The best response on this can be found on a recent SDN blog… you can reference it here:
Hope that helps!
I want to thank Amy Thistle, Kristine Erickson and the rest of the great folks at SAPinsider and Insider Learning Network for setting this up. You all had some great questions. Looking forward to future Live Q&A sessions.
You can follow me on twitter @jeremymasters and the InsiderLearningNetwork at @ILN4SAP.
Amy Thistle (Moderator):
Thanks to all who posted questions and followed the discussion!
A full summary of all the questions will be available here in the HR Forum and in the HR Group on Insider Learning Network. I encourage you to join these groups for ongoing information and additional resources. You can also listen to my recent interview with Jeremy for a quick summer from him on EhP5 updates.
And thank you again to Jeremy Masters for joining us today!