Fostering an Open Innovation Ecosystem to Buoy HXM

The pace of innovation for human resources (HR) is at an all-time high. Businesses and HR leaders recognize that a motivated, productive, and engaged workforce is essential to compete and succeed in today’s market. However, the old ways of managing talent are simply not as effective as they once were.

In response, there is an enormous, exciting influx of fresh ideas and new technologies — from niche startups to established vendors — that are aimed at solving some of the biggest challenges in the workplace, such as eliminating bias in recruitment and developing skills for the future, as well as financial and mental well-being.

For decades, traditional human capital management (HCM) solutions have focused on simplifying and automating HR processes and transactions. SAP recognizes that while these systems are still critical to organizations of all sizes, delivering truly dynamic, engaging experiences that employees expect requires us to do more. Human experience management, or HXM, represents a shift in mindset that designs technology and software with experience at the center of every HR process and transaction — and it is shaping the entire SAP SuccessFactors product portfolio.

HXM is about creating individualized interactions, infusing emerging technologies, and incorporating experience data. And it’s about embracing the incredible innovation happening outside of SAP SuccessFactors. In the recruiting space, for example, it’s about combining the power of SAP SuccessFactors software, Experience Management solutions from SAP (Qualtrics) and the partner ecosystem to help companies inform, inspire, and engage candidates during the recruiting process while making it easy for recruiters to find, engage, and hire top candidates. In the well-being space, it’s about empowering companies to support and care for employees in the moments that matter, in a human-centric way, and provide them with the individual and organizational resources to help them be happy, resilient, engaged, and productive.

By fostering an open innovation ecosystem with some of the most inventive companies shaping the HR industry today, we can deliver industry-leading technologies that integrate directly with the SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite so that customers can drive the greatest impact for their business.

We have developed a number of ways to expand this ecosystem, from empowering customers with the ability to directly integrate unique solutions into their suite to supporting entrepreneurs and innovators in developing new tools that address gaps within the current marketplace.

Navigating the Marketplace for HR Innovation

Navigating the impressive number of new solutions in the HR technology space can easily seem overwhelming. How do you know which technology to choose? Will it integrate within your existing suite of HR tools? What will drive the greatest impact?

To help simplify this process, SAP SuccessFactors customers can access SAP App Center, which includes more than 200 carefully curated applications specific to the workplace. These apps easily integrate within SAP SuccessFactors software, enhancing current solutions with innovations that address specific needs. Here are just a few examples:

  • Financial Well-Being: Best Money Moves helps reduce employee financial stress with technology and live coaching infused with artificial intelligence (AI).
  • Professional Development: AI-powered platform Cultivate provides instant personalized feedback and coaching to promote manager self-awareness and improve team culture.
  • Culture and Employee Engagement: Disco improves employee engagement by enabling employees to celebrate company values daily.
  • Recruiting: Plum helps limit unconscious bias in the recruiting process. By assessing candidates with AI and industrial and organizational psychology, it matches them against behaviors deemed most important to a role. Plum also provides each candidate with their own assessment profile that can help them in theijob search by identifying strengths and weaknesses.

Investing in Early Stage HR Startups Through SAP.iO

Recognizing there are challenges that require specialized solutions, the SAP.iO program helps innovators both in and outside of SAP build products, find customers, and address industry challenges. These startups push traditional thinking and processes and leverage emerging technologies to drive employee- and people-first cultures.

SAP.iO Venture Studio encourages entrepreneurs specifically inside of SAP by funding employee-led innovations. For example, Brilliant Hire by SAP leverages a network of experts to recruit at scale and bring the best candidates to in-person interviews. The solution now integrates with SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting Management. FlexPay by SAP, which recently launched a beta program, allows employees to tap into their accrued earnings ahead of payday to cover unforeseen expenses and avoid costly late fees, overdraft fees and payday loans. Integrated into SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central and SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central Payroll, the solution also offers money budgeting and savings tools.

Seamless Integration and SAP Tools for Extensibility

To help ensure customers can seamlessly integrate the solutions needed to meet their business needs, SAP SuccessFactors solution extensions and tools are available to extend standard functionality without disruptions while also reducing the reliance on IT or external consultations. For example, SAP Content Stream by Skillsoft, the most recent addition to our portfolio of solution extensions, is an integrated solution featuring SAP SuccessFactors Learning and Skillsoft’s learning experience platform. The solution offers a uniform user experience and is designed to improve the learner experience by personalizing user recommendations and learning paths.

In a rapidly changing world where the future of work is not only a vision but an everyday reality, delivering innovative products requires a nimble, collaborative, and agile approach. SAP is continuously focused on innovating on our own HXM solutions while building a robust partner ecosystem to empower customers with the technology they need to address their most pressing challenges.

Together we are helping customers drive value, deliver business results, prepare for the future, and ultimately serve their biggest assets: their employees.

To learn about SAP SuccessFactors Human Experience Management Suite, tap into the HXM Digital Summit for on-demand webcasts, research, articles, and more.


Stephen Spears is chief revenue office for SAP SuccessFactors.

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