Why I chose SuccessFactors Employee Central

Many of you will know that I joined EPI-USE America this week as Principal Consultant for SAP and SuccessFactors with a focus on Employee Central. For those that know me and my background in talent management this might come as a surprise. However, there are many reasons why I have chosen to move into core HR in the Cloud.

While my focus will be on Employee Central, it will also remain with Talent but on a much longer-term perspective. Employee Central is a compelling offering and is the next generation core HR system. It has been and is being built with different design principles than SAP ERP HCM and the methodologies behind it are both exciting and interesting. Employee Central will not be the next version of R/3. It is an entirely new system that is designed for 21st century business users and takes away the reliance on IT to support the system to the extent that a typical on-premise system requires.

There have been over 200 sales of Employee Central since its inception and it continues to grow at a much faster rate than was anticipated when the acquisition of SuccessFactors was closed. The appointment of Thomas Otter as VP of Product Management for Employee Central by SuccessFactors was a strategically brilliant move as his previous role as VP of Research for Human Capital Management (HCM) at Gartner gave him exposure to thousands of customers that will enable him to shape how Employee Central can solve their business challenges over the course of the next few years.

Many of you will know that my background is within talent management and my interest has not changed. In fact, to successfully deliver talent I feel that every consultant should have an overview of all HR processes to more holistically architect solutions that support the business without having a negative impact elsewhere. This is just as important from a functional and business processes perspective as it is from a technical perspective. In addition, Talent is a fairly new in terms of HR Technology and the SuccessFactors applications are not a world apart from their on-premise counterparts, thus the transition – at least for me – is fairly minimal. Another important point is that the talent market is fairly saturated with experienced consultants who can implement Performance & Goals, Learning, Recruiting, etc. I have no desire to compete with experienced consultants in these areas despite my previous experience.

I am very much looking forward to cutting my teeth further into core HR than I have in the past, particularly with the modern approach that Employee Central delivers. It will be a challenging and rewarding time and I look forward to help growing the market for the cutting edge core HCM system that is Employee Central.

More can be found on Employee Central at http://successfactors-corehr.com/.


9 thoughts on “Why I chose SuccessFactors Employee Central

  1. Hi Luke,

    This is a well-rounded approach to catapult your career with the changing market and who can know that better than you. With your thought leadership and an overarching presence in the key aspects of Cloud Computing, your contribution to Employee Central substantiated by your expertise in the Talent suite will be pivotal to customers. After all the definition of talent is changing to encompass core HR, they no longer operate in silos at least at organizations that have recongized that there is direct correlation between the tools provided to peform their job, the productivity per employee and appreciation therof.

    • Thanks Jyoti. There is a clear link between core HR and Talent; in fact, it is really one big process that encompasses each other. The future of Employee Central is geared around this and I am looking forward to being involved in it.

  2. i think this comment “Another important point is that the talent market is fairly saturated with experienced consultants who can implement Performance & Goals, Learning, Recruiting, etc. I have no desire to compete with experienced consultants in these areas despite my previous experience.” is the only comment where I think you are been honest with yourself and your readers. as you, and many before you have said, sfsf is just a technology. it is the business knowledge that is important.

    • Hi Howard,

      The entire blog is honest, as are my intentions. HR in the Cloud is building on the way in which it encompasses Talent Management as a foundation for organizational excellency and sustainability. I have always focused on long-term organizational sustainability more so than measuring performance or performing compensation reviews. Being a specialist in talent does not mean that I do not have expertise in core HR, particularly in the Cloud. Core HR in the Cloud differs from on-premise since the systems are built on different foundations. SAP HCM was built at a time when the focus on HR was transactions and Payroll. Today the focus of HR is Talent Management.

      And yes you are right, SuccessFactors is just a technology – albeit a different one from SAP HCM – and business process knowledge and experience is important.

      Best regards,


  3. Hi Luke, i have just had you blog forwarded onto me, really interesting read. I thought i would introduce myself as no doubt our paths will cross in the not too distant future.
    Nick Hogan
    Employee Central Product Solution Manager, UKI
    +44 7824143228 (Mob)

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