SAP Successfactors Review 2019

May 1, 2019

12:49 pm

SAP Successfactors logo
  • Established: 2001
  • HQ: San Francisco, CA, US
  • Intuitive interface
  • Includes a goal library
  • Mobile app

Comprehensive but pricey performance management software.

As part of its HR software, SAP Successfactors offers a performance management module that's capable of handling the major aspects of managing business performance. This includes setting clear goals, streamlining unavoidable processes, and improving 1:1 meetings or reviews. The company offers plenty of online support, and its software comprehensively covers the performance tools most businesses will need – however, all of this comes at a higher price point than the performance software industry average. Is SAP Successfactors worth it? Read our full review to find out.

  • Free 15-minute guided tour
  • Online Support
  • Serves all business sizes

SAP Successfactors is cloud-based human resource software that includes a broad range of business solution modules on top of its core HR software. These modules include recruiting, onboarding, learning and development, compensation, and performance. The company is one of the largest human capital management software companies in the world, with more than 120 million users across more than 200 countries and territories.

The core HR service is sold on an annual per-user basis, with the performance solution available at an additional per-user cost. The service helps businesses run performance reviews while gathering comments, feedback, and goal progress on an ongoing, rather than segmented basis.

This review looks specifically at SAP Successfactors' performance tools and features, as part of our wider coverage of performance management software. Read on for our look at the software's core features, a video demo of its interface, an explanation of its support team and online resources, and a look at its pricing plans.

In this guide:

SAP Successfactors: Core Performance Management Features

Goal Management

SAP Successfactors performance management solutionThrough SAP Successfactors, managers can establish team and individual goals, check employees' progress towards those goals at any time, and take any specific actions needed to nudge their employees towards success. These actions range from requesting or sharing real-time feedback to logging a full summary of past history to bring up in a one-to-one. Employees, meanwhile, can update managers on their goals and progress at any time, responding to feedback or requesting guidance when needed.

Unlike many other performance management software providers, the SAP Successfactors goal management tools include a Goal Library of over 500 goals, which can provide a template for managers picking out goals for their team that are truly SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely).

Performance Management

Goals aren't the only way to track performance through the software, which lets managers and employees stay in dialogue with each other constantly via commenting and feedback functionality. Activities and Topics are just a couple of the categories that can be tracked and touched on in regular one-on-ones, so that everyone stays on the same page.

Performance reviews are another big element of SAP Successfactors. These can be built from a series of categories that might include an Intro, Core Values, Role Specific Competencies, Development Goals, and a Summary Section, all of which combine for a sleek road-map to an employee's ongoing development.

Performance Assessment

Armed with knowledge about each employee's history and current goal progress, managers can simplify their coaching, easily address what their direct reports have excelled at, and identify what might need work. 360 reviews and an “Ask for Feedback” section help make the performance review a two-way street, so managers can learn from their employees' responses.

Finally, though a team overview section, managers can contrast their employees against each other at a team or organization level, allowing them to easily see the top and bottom performers at a glance.

Video Highlight: Performance and Goals Overview

This quick video from SAP Successfactors can walk you through the vendor's Performance and Goals solution, explaining the Smart Goal wizard, cascading goals, and annual goal plans. It'll also cover performance reviews themselves, and explain how managers can navigate through their direct reports by clicking on each profile they're interested in.

The video is aimed at managers, but it's a good way for anyone to get a feel for what the software interface looks like, and how to navigate through it.

Set Up and Customer Support

SAP Successfactors makes two web portals available to users in need of a little guidance – SAP Support Portal and SAP Help Portal – as well as an FAQ page. In addition to addressing issues, these online locations can let customers download software updates or retrieve license keys.

The SAP SuccessFactors community lets customers talk to peers and product experts to troubleshoot bugs or other issues. Live and on-demand virtual training sessions are also available, along with an academy course that can earn users a certification.

Support & Training

Support options

  • Online support portal
  • Online help portal

Training options

  • Help center
  • Online Forum
  • Virtual training

SAP Successfactors Plans and Pricing

SAP Successfactors does not release its full pricing information publicly, and should be contacted directly for a custom quote or additional information about cost. However, its base package starts at around $85 per employee per year, which on a monthly basis breaks down to a little over $7 per employee. Getting access to its performance management features will cost a little more on top of this, and SAP Successfactors does make this price public: It's $4.17 per user per month.

Granted, this cost is a little more than most performance management software options. Companies interested in this service would be best served by contrasting it against quotes from other top performance management software vendors. For the fastest way to start gathering quotes, take a minute to try filling out's handy quotes form online.


The Verdict

SAP Successfactors offers a well-supported service, and provides all the performance management features a business of any size would need. However, it comes at an above average annual price. Larger companies can justify that price point with the access it offers to valuable HR abilities, but smaller companies may find another service to be more cost-effective.

About our links is reader-supported. If you make a purchase through the links on our site, we may earn a commission from the retailers of the products we have reviewed. This helps to provide free advice and reviews for our readers. It has no additional cost to you, and never affects the editorial independence of our reviews.

Did you like this article?

Get more delivered to your inbox just like it!

Sorry about that. Try these articles instead!

Adam is a writer at and has worked as a tech writer, blogger and copy editor for the last decade. He's also a Forbes Contributor on the publishing industry (and Digital Book World 2018 award finalist) and has appeared in publications including Popular Mechanics and IDG Connect. When not glued to TechMeme, he loves obsessing over 1970s sci-fi art.