SAP HR module implementation for BMW Hungary

Our company, Onespire Ltd. has developed the SAP HR module in use since January 2021 for the Bavarian car manufacturer’s Hungarian branch.

Our post briefly describes the implementation of the successful SAP human resources management solution.

HR support for BMW’s local plans

For more than a year now BMW has been running an SAP HR system, which is capable of serving the expansion of the factory at Debrecen, which we implemented as a partner of the Bavarian car manufacturer.

In BMW’s car factory at Debrecen, Hungary, the SAP HR module has been selected to support the human resource processes. The implementation process was based on an agile methodology. The HR system serving the Hungarian operations has been integrated into BMW’s large, standardized and international SAP HR system, which contains the data of almost all companies and employees of the German automotive giant in the world.

The main phases of the SAP HR module implementation project and the components involved

The implementation of the SAP HR (Human Resource Management) module took place in two main phases. In the first stage, the so-called ‘User Stories’ were created, and in the second the sprints were executed. The developed SAP HR system has been placed in service in January 2021 at the relevant departments of BMW. Since then Onespire Ltd.’s experts have been supporting the SAP HR system, monitoring legal changes and responding to new requests.

BMW employees started to use the following sub-modules in the SAP HR module:

  • SAP Personnel Administration (SAP PA)
  • SAP Organization Management (SAP OM – Organization Management)
  • SAP Time Management (SAP PT)
  • SAP Payroll (SAP PY – Payroll)

Systems connected to BMW’s Hungarian SAP HR module

The human resource management system in place is linked to BMW’s international financial SAP, banking, employee self-service and data warehouse systems. The implementation of the Hungarian plant’s SAP HR module also included the development of interfaces to the above systems, including certain country-specific processes and settings.

The solution developed by Onespire Ltd. contains mainly the Hungarian version of SAP HR module, customized according to the requirements. Improvements have also been made to the SAP HR module to support some domestic processes (such as Cafeteria, travel billing, grossing up). In addition to the country-specific developments, the developed Hungarian environment is also in line with internal BMW SAP developments, which are generally valid according to the international internal processes of the Bavarian car manufacturer.

SAP HR module implementation BMW Hungary

Overview of the methodologies used during the SAP HR module implementation project

The implementation of the SAP HR module carried out by our company, Onepsire Ltd., is based on a well-structured standardized international template, which contains the internal standards, code systems and other specifications defined in the SAP HR solution. This is complemented by a plan, ensuring country-specific specialties such as payroll, accounting and compliance. The design and implementation of the SAP HR module was executed with an unusual approach, and for the first time in an SAP environment within the BMW group, it was based on an agile rather than a waterfall methodology.

Implementing an SAP module with an agile methodology has been a bit more challenging than usual. However, the team quickly adapted to the new approach and soon everyone felt the positive effects of the agile approach. Naturally, there were tasks such as migration, integration testing, or cutover, which still followed traditional waterfall methodology. In this form this could be considered a hybrid project management model, which, based on our experience, may become more common in the delivery of projects related to complex ERP system implementation and other corporate governance solutions.

The most popular elements of the agile methodology lie in continuous improvement. At the end of each sprint, team members evaluate which tasks have been properly performed and where there is room for improvement. The latter elements are used to formulate specific tasks to be executed, so this is not just an administrative step.

Testing and documentation of BMW’s human resource module

Starting from the second half of the project, testing within the sprints has been carried out on the near-final developments. This allowed users of the SAP HR module to learn about the operation of the system sooner and to indicate any new needs, which the agile methodology could handle more flexibly. As the initial headcount was low at BMW’s Debrecen site, all relevant users were involved in the project, significantly reducing the need for subsequent SAP HR module training. Our software developments in the SAP HR system follow BMW’s unified internal development standards.

In order to support the users of the SAP human resources module of the BMW plant in Debrecen, we have prepared a user manual, which, in addition to the specific functional descriptions of the car factory, also contains cross-references to the constantly expanding Hungarian standard SAP HR documentation. As a result, the manual can be kept up-to-date for a long time with minimal efforts. During the implementation of the SAP HR module, we worked on monthly sprints and delivered more than 100 ‘User Story’ of different magnitude. The SAP HR solutions completed at the end of the sprints were taken over by Hungarian users from the business side, by the Munich team from the central system side and by the operation support team from South Africa.

Assessment of the BMW SAP HR module implementation project

The news of the success and timely delivery of the SAP HR module implementation project reached BMW’s management. After the completion of the original task, our cooperation continues with the support phase with our key business partner.

Are you planning to implement, upgrade, develope or localize an SAP HR solution? Contact our SAP human resources module experts at Onespire Ltd. and request a consultation!

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SAP HR module implementation for BMW Hungary

Author: András Kiss

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