I was talking to the IT and HR leadership team at a high technology company today when one of the leaders said to me and my colleagues that while he wants to be able to move his entire hr solution to the cloud, he wants to make the decision to crawl, walk or run based on the circumstances in his company. Our SuccessFactors account executive then mentioned something that made me smile. She said "You can have your cloud your way".
OnPremise HCM customers who want to move one or more of their applications to the cloud can do so one by one, at a pace that suits them. SAP and SuccessFactors can support them move one or more of their talent management applications or all their HCM apps to the cloud. That was the official message. After ten months of delivering the message and listening to customers, I am glad to say that it worked for the most part.
Even though the diagram above depicts a classic hybrid HCM solution, it is rarely this perfect. Based on my experience discussing the solution with tens of customers this year, I realized that reality is not perfect at all. However the hybrid approach where we say that customers can have their cloud their way is working for customers. They are able to get their arms around it, plan and execute. This observation is not based on a hypothesis. It is based on my personal interaction with IT and HR leaders from tens of organizations for over 100 hours this year. I believe it is a large enough sample. The coming months will teach us more lessons. We'll be older and wiser next year.