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Shared Services

Shared Service, Shared Success

Welcome to the Shared Service Center WIKI space.
Please feel free to join the discussions or share with us your experiences and visions on Finance & Accounting  and HR Shared Services.
We are open for comments. Please apply to be an editor.

If you go to the link below, you will find an expert-wiki user guide:

Marcell Vollmer (F&A) and Johannes Mayer (HR)  
Bernhard Fischer.  

What are Shared Services?

Shared Services are a consolidation of functions, processes and resources, which were previously spread across business units or legal entities, into a strategic platform, to provide defined services to internal or external customers with a specified quality for a competitive price. Shared Services are highly effective by consolidation of IT systems and redesign of business processes into major service centers. Most of the companies see 4 reasons for building an SSC:

  • Process Quality
  • Customer Satisfaction
  • Compliance (SOX & Risk Management)
  • Productivity

Standardization of business processes is a prerequisite to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of a Shared Service Organization (SSO) with a high level of automation. The more homogeneous these processes are in an SSC, the more they can be automized, and thus, made efficient in time, quality, and cost.
Quality and costs criteria are the key factors for the location decision (on-, near- or offshore). SAP has chosen a nearshore location in Prague, Czech Republic, for all countries of the EMEA region to realize the synergies and to meet the best mix of quality and cost factors.

Strategy, Feasibility and Planning

The SSC strategy has been derived from SAP's mission to become a world-class unit, which delivers internally high-quality, value-adding business support and acts as a voice of conscience focusing on compliance issues, risk management and good Corporate Governance. Additionally, it demonstrates best practices in the usage of  processes and systems. There are transactional finance and billing processes in scope for the SSC. In Human Resource the HR Shared Service Center is consolidating back-office processes with the objective to free up capacity for more higher value and customer facing HR work. Transactional processes contain a multitude of repetitive activities that can be standardized and automated. The less the required know-how for executing the selected processes is, the easier it is to set-up the migration plan and to structure the SSC organization.

SAP Shared Service Center Organization

SAP's organizational finance and HR SSO model is process oriented with a geographical sub-level where needed. SAP's organizational finance SSO model is process oriented with a geographical sub-level. The same structure has been chosen for quality management which includes training, communication and other projects as well.

Technical Design

The capabilities of application software are critical for reaping the full benefit of a Shared Service Center. A set of systems and applications is required that ensure maximum automation of transactions, workflows, communication with all process constituents and exchange of data with the backend systems.
SAP's solutions help establish a state-of-the-art Shared Services delivery platform maximizing efficiency and effectiveness, transparency and service quality.

Project Management and Implementation of Shared Services

The project management for implementing a SSC can be structured in five phases.

  1. Potential Analysis
  2. Feasibility study
  3. Project Planning
  4. Migration
  5. Optimization

To perform a plan and a complex SSC change project effectively a senior and experienced project management team is needed. All phases of the project need to be planned, detailed and aligned between parallel ongoing workstreams. For the realization of the change process and its implementation a broad toolset and methodology have to be developed.

Best Practise Finance Processes@SAP

The following Finance link describes the best practise finance processes (AP, AR, GA) for a Shared Service organisation according to SAP.

Best Practise Billing Processes@SAP

The following link describes in details the best practise billing processes in a Shared Service oganisation according to SAP. Billing Processes are EB, CB incl. STA and SB and specificly customized for SAP. The described standard is the best practise process for SAP.

Best Practise HR Processes@SAP

HR processes have been redesigned and implemented with the following guiding principle
-           HR Portal as the main information source for  managers and employees
-           Employee and manager self services for simple HR service requests
-           Centralize back-office work in the Shared Service Centre in order to get synergies and economies of scale
-           Establish a collaboration model between local HR experts focusing on customer facing work and the HR Service Centre staff focusing on query handling and back-office work
HR shared service processes which have been implemented are Recruiting, HRdirect (HR query handling and employee services, HR Portal maintenance, exit interviews), Payroll, data Maintenance and Data&Org.. Pilot processes have been implemented for Total Rewards, Learning and Talent Management, statements, new hire onboarding and further roll-outs will come. The described processes are examples and are illustrative for HR Shared Services only.

Service Management Framework (SMF)

Once a location has been determined, a legal framework has to be set up. The service management framework is the contractual agreement
on which services from the SSC are provided. The Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are defined in the SIL.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Page:

    Find here all Frequently Asked Questions about Shared Services,

  • Page:
  • Page:
    Links and Blogs

    Many experts have already posted articles and blogs about Shared Services on the SDN and other online magazines. Find here a collection of some of the most interesting links. 


  • Page:

    Please find here explanations of terms, abbreviations and specific phrases used in this WIKI.

Recently Updated


  1. Former Member

    Test comment

  2. Former Member

    Comment to test comment.

  3. Former Member

    that's great stuff