Understanding release updates and the What's New Viewer

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Stay current with the SAP SuccessFactors solutions
  • Maintain knowledge with the release updates via the What's New Viewer

SAP SuccessFactors release upgrade and maintenance

SAP cloud offerings support a large variety of business scenarios and lines of business solutions such as SAP Hybris Cloud for Customer, SAP S/4HANA Cloud, SAP Business ByDesign, SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite, Ariba Network, Concur solutions, and SAP Fieldglass solutions. Customers get a combined and integrated offering based on various cloud solutions and hybrid business scenarios combining cloud services with on-premise solutions. Overall, all cloud solutions follow similar quality and integration standards. However, there are minor differences, for example, in the frequency of new feature offerings or in the way customers are informed about new features.

Compared to on-premise software products, cloud solutions are not installed in the customer’s system landscape and operated by customers themselves. They are operated through a cloud infrastructure from an SAP location and made available to users over the Internet as a cloud service. This means that SAP takes care of the ongoing operations, maintenance, and installation of updates (corrections and new or enhanced business functionality), so customers can focus on their business and consume new features promptly and more frequently.

With cloud solutions, customers do not need to worry about installing updates and upgrades. All aspects of technical and functional infrastructure are part of the service provided and centrally managed. Cloud services are provided on a subscription basis, and customers receive the right for usage and support for the duration of the subscription period.

Release cycle and support

SAP shares detailed information about the planned timeline, envisioned new functionality and possible impact beforehand to all customers that have subscribed to our cloud solutions so they should be enabled to plan accordingly. In some cases, a test period may be provided beforehand to allow customers to evaluate what is coming. The number of customers that can participate in this approach at any time is usually limited. This phase takes place before the general availability of the new functionality for all customers. During a test period, customers can explore the new functionality in their individual configuration in a non-productive environment.

During a test period, customers can explore the new functionality in their individual configuration in a non-productive environment.

After the restricted-use phase, the unrestricted-use phase begins on the general availability date communicated to customers beforehand. The general availability date marks the point in time when the cloud solution is available for productive use for the first time.

In-between releases containing corrections for issues are continuously provided through fixes and patches.

SAP SuccessFactors Solutions releases follow the ‘One service for all customers’ approach which means that:

  • All customers are on the same version

  • Critical issues are resolved through emergency fixes

  • Other important issues are fixed through weekly patches

In general, cloud services are available and maintained as long as customers are subscribed to them.

Note

Stay current by accessing the latest release information on SAP SuccessFactors.

Note

The release communication process as described may change over time. So keep yourself up-to-date on the SAP’s release strategy.

Related Resources

You can find detailed information about the SAP’s release, upgrade, and maintenance strategy on the SAP Maintenance Information portal.

Patches

SAP SuccessFactors periodically releases updates to correct issues or add new features for SAP SuccessFactors products. You can visit the SAP SuccessFactors Community Portal to access the latest SAP SuccessFactors patch information.

What's New Viewer

To remain competitive, SAP SuccessFactors enhance the product with releases that occur twice per year. It is important to keep our product knowledge up-to-date and learn about the product enhancement to make sure that the usage of the tool is optimal.

The What’s New Viewer delivers all our release information, organized in a single, searchable, and mobile-responsive website. This is our way of delivering release information.

Accessing the What’s New Viewer

The SAP SuccessFactors What’s New Viewer is now publicly available on the SAP Help Portal.

It is also available to S-users, along with all release details and resources on the SAP SuccessFactors Community.

Example of release information

The release information about a specific enhancement may include the following component:

  • The title and short description of the release item, which both appear in the What’s New Viewer table. These tell you what this item is.

  • Why we built this item.

  • The before and after behavior. Sometimes, it’s easier with a picture.

  • The technical details are all of the other fields from the viewer table.

  • The technical details may include a link to a demo. Demos are typically short and have no audio.

  • When there is more detailed information available in the product guides, the links to those topics are included.

Note
Be sure to review the deprecated items for this release using the What's New Viewer and filtering by Lifecycle:DeprecatedandRelease.

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