Importing Data into SAP SuccessFactors Compensation


After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Create compensation tables.
  • Identify grouping functionality.

Types of Data

Introduction to Data Integration

SAP SuccessFactors Compensation is capable of being integrated with an internal and external Human Resource Information System (HRIS). When using an external HRIS, such as SAP ERP, you can transfer employee files using a supported application programming interface (API). For an external HRIS that does not have supported APIs, employee data can be transferred using file transfer protocol (FTP) or through the manual import of a user data file through the Admin Center.

Internal HRIS integration means using Employee Central as the system of record. In the first part of this training course, employee-specific data will be mapped to the user data file instead of Employee Central.

The user data file, which is configurable in Succession Data Model, contains standard general user and compensation fields. The general user data includes status, name, last name, manager, department, and so on. The compensation data includes, but is not limited to, salary, paygrade, job level, local currency code, and so on. The general user data is used by all SAP SuccessFactors implemented solutions, while compensation data is used for compensation planning purposes only.

This unit reviews the data sources used for compensation planning.

Compensation Data Sources

To complete the compensation process, Compensation pulls data from different import files. These files are categorized into Employee Specific and Plan Specific data.

Employee Specific DataPlan Specific Data
User Data FilePay Ranges
Eligibility InformationGuidelines
 Stock Value Tables
 Currency Conversion Table
 Lookup Table

Employee Specific Data

All user data elements that can be imported for compensation planning purposes is described in the Data Integration tab of the SAP SuccessFactors Configuration Workbook. Employee compensation data is configured as part of the Succession Data Model.

  • The Data Integration tab in the Configuration Workbook also describes the functionality of pre-delivered standard compensation fields. These fields are optional and can be enabled/disabled in the Succession Data Model, and the implementation consultant will determine which best fits the customer’s requirements.

  • Custom fields can also be created specifically for SAP SuccessFactors Compensation setup.

  • During implementation, the Configuration Workbook is intended to be a "living" document and should be adjusted as needed.

  • You can obtain the latest Configuration Workbook from the SAP PartnerEdge resource.

General User Data File Fields

There are some general user data file fields that clients often want to display on compensation forms but they cannot be mapped directly to SAP SuccessFactors Compensation. Some of the more common fields include:















  • HR


In order for these fields to be included in compensation forms, they need to be duplicated as custom fields and by using an import key, they can be displayed on the compensation form. The predelivered customizable 01–15 fields in the user data file can be used in compensation planning without being duplicated.

Data Protection and Privacy Features

Several data protection and privacy features are available to customers and some existing features have been enhanced.

The data protection and privacy features include, for instance, the ability to report on personal data changes and the capacity to report on all the data subject’s personal data available in the application. Customers also have the option to configure data retention rules at country level for active and inactive employees that will permanently purge personal data from SAP SuccessFactors applications.

It is the customer’s responsibility to adopt the features that they deem appropriate. More information can be found on the SAP Help Portal:

The User Data File

The user data file is configurable through the Succession Data Model. Simple edits such as enabling/disabling fields can be completed using the Manage Business Configuration user interface tool. Observe the following when updating compensation data through the user data file:

  • Do not import symbols, such as currency symbols (dollar sign, pound sign), percentage sign, or commas.

  • The full user data file does not need to be reloaded once users are in the system. For some, the compensation user data file fields are only imported before each compensation cycle begins; this is the case when customers would like to "freeze" the employee salary information. When customers like to have a continuous feed from the HRIS to SAP SuccessFactors to maintain the most updated salary information while the planning is in progress, the import job can be scheduled on a recurring schedule in Provisioning.

In Provisioning, under Company Settings, enable Assign Default Required Field Values for new Users if None Specified. When enabled, the Status and Userid columns are all that need to be provided to import selected user data file fields.

Also, be sure to avoid using leading zeros.


If leading zeroes are used, both you and the customer need to be conscientious about opening exported data files correctly by using the Text Import Wizard (for example) in Microsoft Excel, so that new users are not inadvertently created when the file is imported.
  • Ensure everyone on the compensation data import file is a current active user in the system.

    • If the user does not exist in the system, they will be assigned N/A values to any required fields.

  • Import the user data file without compensation fields as many times as needed.

  • Import the user data file with compensation fields on a need only basis.

  • Import compensation at least once for the planning cycle.

  • The percentage field format is in decimals with no percent symbol.

    • Example: 96.8% is uploaded as 96.8.

  • Dates are always in the format MM/DD/YYYY.

Manual Import/Export Process

The user data file can be imported and exported in the Admin Center using the Update User Information tool.

The user data file can also be imported and exported from Compensation HomeActions for all plans.

When using SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central enabled environments, Import Employee Data can only be performed in the Admin Center.

When exporting, always specify to include compensation data to extract compensation-related information.

Plan Specific Data

After reading the last lesson, you now know that SAP SuccessFactors Compensation does not store employee-specific data but rather pulls it from an external HRIS through the user data file (and later how to pull data from Employee Central). This section takes a closer look at plan-specific data requirements for compensation planning.

Compensation: Plan Specific Data

This information is also available in the SAP SuccessFactors Compensation Implementation Guide. Get the latest Implementation Guide at

  • Currency conversion table

  • Salary pay matrix table

  • Manager Promotion map

  • Job code and pay grade mapping tables

  • Job families and roles (if Job Selector is used)

  • Lookup tables

  • Stock tables

  • Budget groups


In some SAP SuccessFactors documentation, data uploading is also referred to as importing.

Currency Conversion Tables

Compensation planning may involve multiple planners where some use a different currency than those they are planning for, such as when a US manager plans for their employees in India. SAP SuccessFactors Compensation has a feature which can be used to toggle between employee and planner currency views wherein a default view is available to be set too. For the information to be accurately converted into different currencies, a conversion table must be defined for each currency combination that will be used for planning.

Currency conversion tables must:

  • Be in .csv format.

  • Contain no commas or headers.

  • Include columns in the following order:

    • Convert from

    • Convert into

    • Conversion rate

  • Rates are bi-directional: If one rate exists for one currency pair, then there is no need to add a rate for the reciprocal pair.

  • Recommended to have at least five decimal places for a more precise conversion. Supports up to 15 decimal places.

Updates to currency conversion tables after worksheets are launched are dynamic. Any changes in the table will impact both in-process and completed worksheets, that's why it is highly recommended to create a new currency conversion table for each planning year.


The option for which currency view is available in the compensation worksheet is configured in the XML plan.

Salary Pay Matrix

Salary Pay Matrix or Salary Pay Range defines the salary range of an employee's pay grade. This information is used in compensation planning for calculating benchmarks such as compa-ratio or Position in Range. By default, salary range is mapped to employee pay grade, however up to 3 additional attributes can be used to define the customer's pay structure. When Compensation is integrated with Employee Central, there is no limit on the number of additional attributes or associations that can be used (more on this in the Employee Central integrated topic). The salary pay range table contains the following data:

  • Pay Grade

  • Min Pay, Mid Pay, and Max Pay display the minimum, midpoint, and maximum amounts for that pay grade.

    • Ascending, positive, non-zero values, no commas or currency symbols.

  • Aside from Pay Grade, up to three additional attributes are allowed to further associate pay range to employees.

  • Pay matrix tables can be imported in either functional currency or local currency.

Salary Pay Matrix – Leading Practices and Considerations

  • Do not update salary range tables that were referenced in forms that have been launched for a prior cycle.

  • If you anticipate any changes to the pay grades or min/mid/max values, create new tables which can be referenced in your new templates.

  • Updates to salary ranges after forms are launched are dynamic; any changes in the table will impact completed forms.

  • If using compa-ratio as a benchmark, minimum and maximum is suggested to be a consistent percentage from midpoint to allow for meaningful calculations.


"Promotable" is used for a manual manager promotion option. It has no impact on how the Job Selector functions and should be set to the default of True, even if the Job Selector is used.

Localized Salary Pay Matrix

Salary Pay Matrix can be imported in local or functional currency. When using multi-currency plans the pay matrix can be localized.

If creating a localized matrix:

  • The order of the import file matters:

    • Records with the same currency should be grouped together and should be continuous in the import file.
  • The currency code should display in lexicographical order.

  • Records for the functional currency should display at the end of the file.

  • Currency code "*" represents functional currency: this would apply if you do not specify a local currency in the currency column, then the pay guide would be interpreted in functional currency.

  • Zero minimum, mid, or max pay will result in N/A when the system calculates compa-ratio and range-penetration.

Manager Promotion Map

Promotion Map is a manual promotion tool for managers. It defines the new paygrades that are visible for managers to select in the worksheet when promoting an employee to a different pay level.

The Promotion Map and Job Selector are not designed to work at the same time. Once the Job Selector is used, all four job fields will be linked by the job family/job role/job code setup.

Job Code and Pay Grade Mapping Tables

Job code and pay grade mapping tables reflect which job code corresponds to which pay grade in a company. The tables are only needed if the customer uses the Job Selector function.

  • Tables must be in .csv format

  • The job codes should not contain any commas

  • The name of the job code must match exactly with what was created or imported in the families and roles

  • Headers are optional

  • With two columns in the order indicated below:

    • Column A = Jobcode

    • Column B = Paygrade

Complete information is located in the SAP SuccessFactors Compensation Implementation Guide.

Job Families and Roles

Job roles are titles that describe a designation held by an employee within the company. Job roles that are specific to a group are bundled together under a single job family.

In SAP SuccessFactors, job families and roles are created as one for use in all SAP SuccessFactors solutions. The use of job families and roles in SAP SuccessFactors Compensation is only necessary if using the Job Selector or promotions tool.

  • Column A indicates if the row is for a family, role, or competency

  • Column B is the family name (must be the same for all rows)

  • Column C is the role title

    • Used to map job roles to a family

    • A single family can have multiple roles

  • Column D is the role description

    • Role description for roles

    • Leave field blank for a family row

  • Column E is the job code

    • Used to map job codes to job roles

    • A single role can have multiple job codes


Note that the header row (row 1) is provided here for clarification and is not necessary in the actual CSV file.

Lookup Tables

Lookup tables are used to assign data to employees in situations where it would be too cumbersome for an administrator to import using a user data file. For example, if budgets were assigned based on an employee's country, business unit, and pay grade, the administrators would have to sort and filter the employee data to assign the appropriate budget to an employee. With a lookup table, the system can easily assign the budget value using multiple attributes. These attributes are called inputs, while the data which will be displayed on the form are called outputs. Lookup tables are referenced in a formula to process the employees that meet the set attributes.

They must be in .csv format.

Columns must be in the order indicated below:

  • Key/Input (1 to 5)

  • Value/Output (1 to 5)

When using sensitive employee information as input keys in a lookup table, an optional setting is available in Company Settings to encrypt the lookup table data. Encrypting data for large tables might impact system performance.

Input information in an unencrypted lookup table is exposed when using the View Source functionality in the browser.

If the current plan uses lookup tables, the table reference can be updated when cloning/copying plans. Instead of manually searching through the fields or XML, for all lookup tables associated with it, the system provides the reference and can update when necessary.

Lookup tables are available as an object in instance synchronization.

The instance synchronization feature, or "instance sync," enables customers to move configuration objects and settings from one SAP SuccessFactors company instance to another. It supports one-way and two-way synchronization, object-level permission control, multiple targets per source, and synchronization across different data centers.

Instance synchronization uses a "push" model, meaning that configuration objects and settings are selectively "pushed" from the source instance to the target instance. Configurations cannot be "pulled" into the target from the source. Therefore, only users with access to the source instance, which, in many cases, is the customer’s test instance, can use the instance sync tools.

Stock Tables

The stock table is used for the long-term incentive (LTI) strategy.

There are three types of stock tables:

  • Stock value: allows for the conversion of currency equity grant values to equivalent units or shares (or vice versa)

  • Stock factor: used to convert stock units to an appropriate mix of applicable equity types

  • Stock participation guideline: a lookup table that defines the percentage of employees with a specific attribute, for example, pay grade, that are eligible to receive a stock grant

Complete information is located in the SAP SuccessFactors Compensation Implementation Guide.

Stock Value Tables - Option 1

Stock value tables allow for the conversion of currency equity grant values to equivalent units or shares.

  • Planner enters the award in a value and the system converts it to units

    • In this example below, $12,000 to 833 units

  • Table rows must be in this order:

    • options

    • stock

    • stockother1

    • stockother2

    • stockother3

Stock Value Tables – Option 2

Stock value tables may also be set up to convert equity units or shares to equivalent currency values

  • Import an inverse amount in the stock value table

  • Planner enters the award in units and the system converts it to a value

  • Table rows must be in the same order

Stock Factor Tables

Stock factors are used to convert stock units to an appropriate mix of stock, options, or any other applicable equity type (up to a total of five).

Stock factors are based on a key field, typically job level. However, custom fields can be used.

Factors are expressed as decimal amounts and the sum of the factors across all equity types should equal 1 (that is, 100%).

Stock Participation Guideline Tables

Stock participation tables define the percentage of employees with a specific attribute that are eligible to receive a stock grant. The table consists of two columns:

  • Column A is the Key

    • The attribute that the employee must have

    • In the example below, the Key is Job Level

  • Column B is the Value

    • The percentage of employees with that attribute receiving an equity allocation

    • In the example, 50% of Job Level D2 should receive allocation

Using this example below, all six employees have been given a recommendation on the form.

But the participation guideline indicates only 50% of D2 employees should be given allocation.

The participation guideline displayed in the budget panel reflects the over allocation of employees.


Stock participation is not commonly used.

Enablement of Stock Participation Tables

Stock participation capability must be enabled in the XML template. The customer can submit a ticket to Customer Success. However, the Professional Services consultant can make two changes in the XML.

  1. Enable the Stock Participation flag. Insert the text in the XML for includeStockParticipation="true".

  2. Insert the following XML code into the XML to connect the template with the correct stock participation table.


In this example, the table name is "Participation". You may want to use a different table naming convention, such as "2014_Participation". However, this type of table name would need to be changed in the XML every year.

Create Compensation Tables

Business Example

You need to create conversion and pay range tables for the current year's compensation planning. You can use any existing tables as a baseline or create a new one. You will also import and export the user data file without adding any changes to the data.


  1. Create a currency conversion table.

    1. By using the Search for actions or people tool, enter Currency Conversion Table as the search criteria.

    2. Open an existing table such as Comp_Currency_Conversion.

    3. Choose Export.

    4. Save the table in your local drive. Update the rates with any preferred details.

    5. By using the Search for actions or people tool, enter Currency Conversion Table as the search criteria.

    6. Enter 20xx Conversion as the name or any preferred naming convention. Add descriptions according to any preferred naming convention. Select Create.

    7. Choose 20xx Conversion to open the table. Select Choose File to search the file from your local drive. Select Import to upload the new currency table.

  2. Create a pay range table.

    1. By using the Search for actions or people tool, enter Salary Ranges as the search criteria.

    2. Open an existing table such as comp_payguide.

    3. Choose Export to download the table to your local drive.

    4. Update the table as necessary.

    5. Navigate back to the Salary Range landing page.

    6. Enter 20xx payrange as the name or any preferred naming convention. Add a description according to any preferred naming convention. Select Create.

    7. Choose 20xx payrange to open the table. Select Choose File to search the file from the local drive. Select Import to upload the new salary pay range table.

  3. Export the user data file.

    1. By using the Search for actions or people tool, enter Actions for All Plans.

    2. Under All Plans, click Employee Data Export.

    3. Select Include User Compensation Data and Include imported field-level eligibility fields with system default import keys.

    4. Choose Export User File.

    5. Save the CSV file to your local drive.

    6. Review the compensation fields included in the user data file.

  4. Import the user data file.

    1. By using the Search for actions or people tool, enter Import Employee Data.

    2. Navigate to Select an EntityBasic Import.

    3. Select Browse and find the relevant user data file.

    4. Select Validate Import File Data.

    5. Select Import.

Groups in SAP SuccessFactors Compensation

Talking about groups as they are used in Compensation can be very difficult as there are different groups that pertain to different functions.

Role-Based Permission Groups

These are used in assigning permissions. They consist of:

  • Permission Group: set of employees assigned access based on their functional tasks.

  • Target Group: target population that the granted permission group will have access to.

To access, navigate to Manage EmployeesManage Permission Group.

Field-Based Permission Groups

These consist of groups that are created for Compensation form fields. The ability to edit and read Compensation fields can be restricted for different groups.

In this way, admins have the ability to edit and/or revoke permissions of certain Compensation fields for certain employees.

To access, navigate to Plan SetupSettings.

Budget Groups

These are groups used in defining budget percentages and guideline criteria.

They are static groups and are created within a job family.

To access, navigate to Actions for all plansGroup AssignmentsManage Families and Groups.

Statement Groups

Groups used for assigning various rewards statements.

To access, navigate to Actions for all plansGroup AssignmentsManage Dynamic Groups.

Employee Groups

Shareable groups that can be created by one admin (for example, a Performance Management admin) and used by another admin (such as a Compensation admin).

These groups can be used to create worksheets where similarly located members will be in one form. When used, planners will receive multiple forms.

These groups can also be used when organizations may have a need to launch worksheets to employees within a hierarchy at different points during a year.

Enable Do not duplicate employees on worksheet to avoid employees being visible on multiple forms due to transfers.

To access, navigate to Manage EmployeesUpdate User InformationManage Employee Groups.

My Groups

These groups allow users to create their own people-based group definitions which can be used in several locations in the application, such as reporting or administrative tasks. Essentially, My Groups are saved queried criteria on users.

These groups cannot be shared. They can only be used by those who create them. These groups can appear in Matrix Grid Reports, Dashboards Filter Options, List View Filter Options, and Spreadsheet Report Filter Options.

To access, navigate to the Option menu.

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