Company / Industry
Union Investment Group, Frankfurt/ Main / Finance services
The Union Investment Group is the expert for fonds asset management in the corporate FinanzGruppe. For 60 years Union Investment develops solutions for private and institutional investments. In March 2016 2727 employees were in charge of more than 4 million customers and a managed asset of 268.5 billion € in 1208 different fonds.
The Enterprise Compensation Management (ECM) implementation is a sensitive subject for many companies due to the many regulatory and data security related requirements – especially, when already existing individual developments or tools need to be transferred for specific compensational element calculation.
The investment company Union Investment decided for SAP ECM and successfully implemented the system.
AIM: INCREASE USABILITY AND PROCESS STABILITY
To date, Union Investment has conducted compensation planning outside the SAP ERP HCM (Human Capital Management) system. The approximately 350 managers used the basic data available in SAP for this purpose, but these were prepared with specific tools to accomplish the planning. The data was then transferred back to the SAP HCM system via an interface and transferred to payroll.
"On the one hand, we want to avoid media disruptions in the future; on the other hand, the complex regulatory requirements for compensation systems require a complete, system-side mapping of all compensation processes," explains Daniel Seidler, Group Manager Human Resources Controlling & Compensation at Union Investment and project manager for the ECM project. "Therefore, our primary goal was to significantly increase process stability as well as usability for the user, respectively our managers.
BACK TO STANDARD: ECM-MODULE BY SAP
The challenge for Union Investment was to integrate the existing compensation system into the SAP standard. This applied both to the established processes for compensation planning, and to the planning tools used to date. One example is a calculator used by the investment company to calculate variable salary components. This calculator was specifically developed for the requirements of Union Investment. In order to continue using it in the new SAP ECM, the complex program had to be redesigned.
Union Investment deliberately chose ECM, the SAP-HCM Suite´s solution. Prior to the project, the investment company analyzed the solutions offered by the market in this area unbiased as to the results. "We only found specialized isolated solutions, that did not meet our requirements," says Cornelius Fleiner, IT Project Manager ECM at Union Investment, summarizing the results of the market analysis. The alternative would have been an integrative, non-SAP ERP system, but the IT department would have had to develop corresponding interfaces to SAP. "From a technical and business point of view, that wouldn't have made any sense," says Fleiner.
Success factor: involve users at an early stage
In a multi-stage selection process, the investment company chose projekt0708 from Munich. The specialist for talent management and HR process optimization initially prepared the ECM introduction with Union Investment´s IT and HR department. Apparently, the implementation of two user acceptance tests, in which selected executives in upper management could test the application and give their feedback, proved to be a particular factor of success for this project.
"It was important to us to involve the managers as early as possible, in order to achieve maximum acceptance among future users at an early stage," explains project manager Daniel Seidler.
According to the company, the test feedback was directly transferred into the subsequent implementation. "Such a procedure is highly unusual for this kind of project", adds Dirk Jäckel, managing director of projekt0708. "I can only recommend these iterative elements for projects like this", he adds. Jäckel was responsible for projekt0708´s ECM introduction at Union Investment.
APPLICATION ADVANTAGES FOR MANAGERS
The SAP ECM solution´s first performance level went live in early November. Due to the early involvement of users in the project, the introduction - according to the company itself - went smoothly. Seidler reports with satisfaction: "A successful ECM project introduction is confirmed by the fact that we do not receive many requests from the users after the rollout, nor subsequently from the compensation recipients".
In order to achieve these results, the new application was presented at the various locations during a roadshow. In addition, an explanatory film was produced, which presents the application in 100 seconds.
In performance level 2, the complex calculation of the risk taker bonus was integrated into SAP ECM for the investment company. Hence, manual data processing could be reduced and the regulatory requirements for compensation systems were met.
According to Union Investment, the core elements of the ECM system at Union Investment are the following:
- Flexible delegation process for determining the executive managers
- Transparent process status overview including display of the cumulative planning values for each manager
- Simple forms with clear structures
- Different selectable views with varying degrees of detail during the planning phase
- Year-round visibility of compensation data for executives, in real-time
- Secure data transport from planning to correspondence and payroll accounting
- System-based calculation and payment of complex bonus and compensation systems
Union Investment states, that SAP ECM provides improved process stability as well as a SAP-integrated, comprehensive mapping of compensation processes. A further result of the compensation management implementation is an increased transparency of the overall process for the decision makers, combined with a significantly improved usability. This results in qualitatively improved data for compensation management - both for managers and HR responsibles.
The Union Investment Group is a proven expert for fund asset management in the Cooperative Financial Network. Union Investment has been developing investment solutions for private and institutional investors for 60 years. In March 2016, 2,727 employees served over 4 million customers with assets under management of around EUR 268.5 billion in 1,208 different funds.