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SAP HCM Automation Testing – An Overview
SAP HCM Automation Testing – An Overview

As an enterprise software leveraged by several companies for core business operations, SAP (System Applications and Products) is a mammoth platform that is often tailored to suit business needs. Often, SAP is integrated with other non-SAP systems to ensure the seamless functioning of core business operations.

SAP test automation is an essential process to ensure secure, bug-free, and smooth functioning of the application and it’s integrations. For this purpose, SAP testing is carried out every time a process is newly set up, adjusted, or updated.

SAP HCM Automation Testing

HCM (Human Capital Management) is one of the paramount processes carried out across industries globally. As one of the most flexible HR procedure-related software and as a comprehensive human resources management system, SAP HCM provides all the functionalities required for personnel management. So, SAP HCM automation testing must ensure the optimal working of all HR, time, and payroll procedures covering all scenarios.

Automation tools available for SAP HCM scenarios:

  • Avo Assure
  • Micro Focus (QTP) UFT
  • eCATT
  • Tricentis Tosca
  • Micro Focus Silk Test
  • Ranorex Studio
  • TestComplete 

Selecting the right automation tool for SAP HCM scenarios depends on several factors:

  • Application Under Test (AUT)
  • The objective of testing (Integration Testing, Cross Application Testing, and End to End testing)
  • People’s skill set (knowledge of programming language and tool usage)
  • Cost and maintainability
  • Browser or windows application support - Few tools may not support either browser or windows application
  • Automation architecture 

Test Case Scenarios

Here are a few test case scenarios for SAP HCM automation testing.

1. Personnel Actions Testing

What are personnel actions in SAP HR? 

SAP HR personnel actions allow users to maintain employee master data using a set of relevant info types that are sequentially maintained one after the other. Using a personnel action to enter employee master data ensures that all core data is entered into the system. Some personnel actions in SAP HCM are:

  • Hiring
  • Termination
  • Rehire
  • Organizational change
Personnel Actions Automation

Personnel actions are all the activities surrounding the employee life cycle, such as hiring, promotion, change in pay, and termination. As these activities are performed on a regular basis by HR members, it requires a lot of data to be maintained in the system. This is an aspect where personnel actions can be automated. By providing the employee data as an input in the form of excel or .CSV, automation tools can be employed to perform required personnel actions and update all relevant info types.

2. HRSP Upgrade/System Upgrade Testing

What is HRSP upgrade? 

SAP HCM HRSP (HR Support Package) provides legal requirements or rule changes for different countries (related to tax levels, reporting, etc.) and corrections for issues (reported by the customers). Based on client requirements, HRSP upgrades are implemented in the system on a regular basis with a defined cadence such as twice a year or quarterly.

HRSP Testing

As part of HRSP, multiple changes are updated as a regular practice:

  • Standard SAP PA/OM Transaction codes execution – Example: PA20, PA30, PA40, PP01, PPOSE, PPOM, PPOCE
  • Standard SAP Time Transaction codes execution – Example: PT60, PT66, PT50, CAT2, CAT3, CAT6, CAPS
  • Standard Payroll Transaction codes execution – Example: PC00_MXX_CALC_SIMU, PCP0, PC00_M99_CEDT, PC00_MXX_CDTA, PU10 
  • Comparing payroll results – Executing payroll parallel runs and comparing them by using wage type reporter PC00_M99_CWTR download pay results and comparing the before and after upgrade pay results.
  • Test customizing changes specific to the client – As HRSP changes will impact customizing, changes need to test all customized changes.
  • Interfaces and SAP Integration tools testing. 
HRSP HCM Test Scenarios Automation

Most of the above scenarios can be automated by employing automation tools. For example, after executing all standard transactions, screenshots can be captured, and PDFs can be printed upon execution.

End-to-end scenarios can, also, be automated. For example, a scenario from creating a position to executing the posting while including all transactions can be automated:


3. Year-end Activities Testing

What is SAP HCM Year-end?

A number of activities must be performed at Year-end for any payroll system. Based on the country, these processes vary. For example, the USA and Canada's Year-end processes start in the month of November as the financial year for these countries is from January to December.

HCM Year-end activities
1. Time Management 
  • Update the holiday calendar for the next year based on business requirements.
  • Approve & transfer all employees’ work time for the current year.
  • Generate work schedule rules for next year.
  • Update your absence quotas.
  • Transfer time quotas based on business requirements.
  • Update quota entitlements if required.
  • Create new absence or attendance codes, if required, for the following year.
  • Create new absence or attendance quotas, if required, for the following year.
2. Payroll 
  • Update SAP payroll calendars. 
  • Update new tax rates for the coming year.
  • Update respective country tax-related rates.
  • Update pay structure if applicable.
  • Update payroll constant tables.
  • Update benefits rates.
  • Create new benefit plans if required. 
3. Apply Legal Changes
  • Apply legal changes before the new tax year – SAP Support Packs/ EPIUSE Changes/ Rimini Street Changes (based on clients).
  • Update BSI changes – applicable for the USA.
Year-end Testing Automation

After updating all the above, testing needs to be done for the changes, which is time and effort consuming. However, the following scenarios can be automated:

  • Apply absence on a holiday and test whether holiday calendars are generated correctly.
  • Run time evaluation. 
  • Run payroll and validate new tax changes on the payslip. 
  • Generate Year-end forms for the current year.

4. Interface Testing: The following shows how interface testing can be automated:


5. Regular Enhancements / SAP HCM Support Testing – Time and Payroll

SAP HCM Production support entails few standard changes like creating a new wage type or creating a new WSR and testing for such changes can be automated.

New Wage Type / WSR Test Scenario Automation

Employee number, wage type / WSR details, and start date need to be provided as inputs for the following scenario:


6. Data Load Testing

When it comes to SAP HCM data load, testing can be automated in the test environment but not in the production system since SAP HCM data may impact employees’ payroll and active directory, so it is not recommended.

BADI program name / LSMW details and data load sheet need to be provided with the correct format and file download path as inputs.


Impact of SAP HCM Test Automation

SAP HCM automation testing impacts various aspects differently:

1. Manual Effort

  • Reduces human effort from 180 hours to 30 hours with 80% - 90% automation.
  • Achieves end-to-end execution quickly.
  • Ensures thorough and quick testing for successful deployment of the application in the production environment, which is crucial in today’s agile environments.

2. Cost

Costing depends on the automation tool license cost, automation engineers’ salaries etc. It varies from one company to another and even among teams within the same company. Hence, having a precise cost and timeline assessment is critical before starting automation.

3. Accuracy 

  • Though not as accurate as manual testing, Automation can achieve a high degree of accuracy.
  • In case of doubt, execution can be reviewed at any point with the help of available screenshots, reports, and other metadata. 
  • Automation testing can verify only the functionalities it was designed for, thus calling for careful design of automation test cases.

4. Time 

  • Time investment is required initially for building automation test cases which usually have a life span of three to five years approximately. Thus, it leads to massive cost savings as well.
  • 22-days testing can be completed in four days. 

Some other ways SAP HCM automation testing positively impacts organizations are:

  • Improved coverage.
  • Better quality and fewer production outages. 
  • Decreased workload in each release cycle.


Today, almost all companies use automation, ranging from automobiles to banking and healthcare to aviation. Without using automation, time and cost cannot be reduced significantly. All organizations, big or small, are either evaluating or already on their automation journey to optimize their operational costs. Hence, the scope to automate all manual processes is significant. It can reduce cost and time and help companies focus on value generating ideas.

If you are interested in learning more about SAP HCM Automation Testing and how it can save time and cost, please feel free to say a hello to us at [email protected]