In a previous blog, we covered Employee Central Tips and Tricks related to Accrual Rules and Calendar Assignments and some of the complexities related to an implementation. This blog post will cover Period End Processing (PEP) which is the required maintenance of the Time Off plans (depending on their lifecycle) after the plan goes live. This might include ending a plan and clearing or carrying over the remaining balance to the next plan year.
Period End Processing rules are essentially business rules configured for the end of a plan year in order to close out prior year accounts and create new accounts for the next plan year on recurring time accounts. In this blog, we’ll review the business rules used for closing out the old accounts, creating the new accounts, and managing the existing balance.
Closing Out Old Accounts
In this this step, the SAP SuccessFactors system allows you to check that a new account doesn’t already exist for the user. Then, it allows you to create Time Account Details for that user. The first Amount Posted will be opposite (or negative) the current Remaining Account. The system will generate the External Code automatically and apply the remaining parameters as set by the system admin.
In this screen shot, the “If” statement first checks whether a new account exists. Then, the rule will make a posting to the Old Account using the remaining balance and the “Opposite Sign” function, which will result in a zero balance.
Creating a New Account
The new account will be created based on the plan parameters that you have established on the Time Account Details. In the next section, we will discuss how to create the balance for the new account.
In the following screen shot, the first step will create the zero balance on the old account. The “Create Time Account.Time Account Details” step will create the new account.
Managing the Existing Balance
The Time Off and Business Rules Engine provides multiple options to determine how to manage the existing balance from the prior year to the next plan year. Since this is something that can be defined at the company or country level, there must be flexibility in these rules to manage all situations. There are three options that can be used to determine what should be done with the existing balance. The balance can be set to zero, carried forward to the new account, or carried forward up to a limited balance. Each of these scenarios is detailed below.
- The balance is set to zero. This is typical when a balance should not be carried over to the next plan year. In this case you do not need to use a Create new Account step.
- The remaining balance is carried forward to the new account. Generally, this might be used in a Vacation or PTO situation where employees can carry over the entire balance to the following year. A rule like this may also be needed to comply with legal requirements in various states or locales.
- The remaining balance is carried forward, but only to a certain limit. There are situations where a company will allow their employees to carry over a certain amount, for example, up to only 10 hours as seen in the example below. The value of “10” shown in the amount posted will limit the carryover to 10 or fewer hours.
Time Off policies can vary across countries, regions, states, types of employees, and many other factors. To fulfill these dynamic requirements, a combination of these rules can also be used by adding additional If/Then statements in the Period End Processing rule. For example, if a company allows its employees in California to carry over unlimited time until the following year, but limits employees in all other states to only 10 days, it would have to:
- Create the rule to review the California employees first, with the rule allowing for unlimited carryover.
- Then add the series of statements for all other employees to the rule, limiting the carryover to 10 days.
Another tip for Period End Processing rules involves an account with a negative balance. A negative balance might occur if your plan allows employees to use time before they have earned it. If the negative balance should be carried forward to the next plan year, add another If/Then statement to the rule as seen below.
Once the Period End Processing rule is complete, tie the rule to the Time Account Type. Do this by adding the rule in the “Period-End Processing Rule” field in the appropriate Time Account Type field under “Manage Time Off Structures.”
The Period End Processing can then be executed using a Time Off Calendar. The calendars can be found under “Manage Time Off Calendars,” where you would then select “Change Scenario” Period End Processing. The calendar can be adjusted manually or scheduled.
Another option is to automate Period End Processing. This can be set up on the Time Account Type, using the Period End Processing Automation field. By selecting “Automatic At End Of Booking Period,” the time account change calendar for Period End Processing is created and executed based on the date entered in the “Account Valid From” fields.
Period End Processing functionality is valuable for the automation of your Time Off plans. Understanding the variances between each country, region, state, location, employee type, and company policy is key to successfully managing Time Off across the organization. It is sometimes overlooked during an implementation because it’s not top of mind for the project team, and is often thought to be something that can be figured out later. However, it’s important to review the required rules for the organization and functionality available in the Time Off module for a successful implementation and ease of system management post go-live.