Work-life balance: Are your employees really thriving? How SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life is a game changer

Jun 06, 2019
  • people
  • automotive
  • SAP
  • intelligent apps

Emma Morris shares her thoughts on well-being in the workplace, work-life balance and how the latest SAP technology can enable those important, vital conversations. 

In 2019, I think it’s pretty obvious to most what work-life balance is all about. Businesses use it in their objective settings to ensure conversations are being had. But are they the right conversations? And what use are these chats if employees have reached the point of exhaustion, only to perhaps flag to their bosses that their work-life balance may be slightly out of kilter?

SAP SuccessFactors has a new offering which helps pull together three elements to well-being in the workplace, detailed in the diagram below: SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life.

Work-life balance? It’s time to be accountable: now Big Brother is watching via SAP SuccessFactors

SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life: the elements of well-being

As a manager, reviewer, mentor, buddy, mental health champion and all-round advocate of work-life balance, I make the point of having open conversations above the above areas with as many people as possible… but not enough with myself. But that’s all they are – conversations. A chat. “How are you feeling today?”, “How are the kids?”, “Which country are you in this week?” Unless you can count every person in your organisation as a genuine friend, it would be impossible to get any real context around these questions, let alone knowing how to process the responses appropriately. And then there’s the psychology behind the responses. Overworked millennials may fear speaking up about their work-life imbalance for fear of being regarded as “weak” or “moaning”. So, what if we could enter into these conversations armed with information to be able to help understand more about our colleagues’ patterns of behaviours? And in turn, help our colleagues see that the elegant swan rosy picture they paint to their boss may in fact be their way of portraying that they have everything under control, when in fact they are panicking and approaching burn out under the waterline. 

SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life aims to “help organisations create a thriving workplace, increase employee productivity and engagement, and offer real-time data that can be measured and connected to real behaviour change and outcomes that matter”.

By taking short “Are you thriving” assessments, employees are able to find out how well they are thriving and how successfully managers are leading their teams for peak performance. Participants answer questions related to their well-being and workplace satisfaction in order to build self-awareness and learn what they can do to change behaviour, and to learn more about the support available from their workplace.

Work-life balance? It’s time to be accountable: now Big Brother is watching via SAP SuccessFactors

SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life “Are you thriving” Assessments

Once completed employees receive “micro step” tips on how to improve performance. My “thrive score” as of November 2018? A measly 2.

Work-life balance? It’s time to be accountable: now Big Brother is watching via SAP SuccessFactors
Work-life balance? It’s time to be accountable: now Big Brother is watching via SAP SuccessFactors
Work-life balance? It’s time to be accountable: now Big Brother is watching via SAP SuccessFactors

SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life “thrive score” and “micro steps”

So what…. I was “surviving, but not thriving”. Imagine if my peers, managers, well-being experts at work were aware of this? If you work for a company that prides itself on caring for its employees  (and if you don’t… that’s madness!) then this is the stuff of dreams! Actual metrics. But all I did was be brutally honest with myself in a quick survey. Is that really enough to make the change? That’s where SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life can help.

It is possible to pull data from a multitude of sources. For example, it can track via SAP Concur that I am travelling more than usual, and that the flights I am on are red eye or delayed etc. It can look at my timesheet and see that I am booking plenty of overtime, across multiple projects, I have no annual leave booked, and that I have missed the last three training sessions I was supposed to have. In short, I am struggling to meet the objectives set for me because of this workload. In turn, this is impacting my team, whose Thrive scores seem to be directly correlated to mine. Next step, as predicted by SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life: sick leave. Signed off work by a doctor for exhaustion: now exists an unhappy employee, and effectively a business is losing vital revenue from a valuable colleague.

When I attended SAP HQ in the UK recently for a partner briefing in which SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life was one of the announcements, I couldn’t help but get excited about it. I hope you are too, and I encourage you to take the SAP SuccessFactors Thrive survey, and consider how your organisation could work better and smarter, protect its employees and become better equipped to boost productivity, avert employee burnout (whilst at the same time identifying its root causes), and genuinely care for its workforce.  Happiness at work should be a Key Performance Indicator. Only with the right metrics and analytics in place, are we able to truly track this information.

Features of SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life



Assess Your well-being

Conduct assessments of your current individual well-being. Use assessments as a channel for feedback to your company.

View content

View content that supports you in improving your well-being.

Receive proposals

Receive individual proposals that help you increase your well-being.

Perform activities

Perform activities and track your progress.

Conversation between manager and employee

Managers and employees can lead activity-related conversations with each other.

Create quick polls

Get feedback from employees by sending them quick polls and viewing the responses.

View reports

View various anonymized reports. Compare data from different groups within your company.

Maintain user profile

Maintain your personal information and manage your account.

Receive notifications

Get notified about updates and changes which are important to you.

Recent work with my colleagues at delaware has focussed on the Future of Work and it is imperative that technologies such as SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life are used in a way to enable well-being in the workplace and beyond. 

This latest module and offering in the SAP SuccessFactors suite is still in its infancy, with very few references for SAP. But it is clear that considerable investment has been made in this focus area, and it speaks volumes with the human element of Human Resources professionals. Well-being is a vital component of the future of Talent. One of the big questions we are hearing from CEOs and CHROs today continues to be “how do we hire, deploy and retain the right talent?”. SAP SuccessFactors Work-Life will strengthen the business case for improving all three of these concerns. We at delaware pride ourselves on keeping ahead of the curve, and as such are ready to deploy this technology alongside our other Human Capital Management offerings.

If you would be interested in learning more, having a conversation about your organisation’s well-being score, or about SAP SuccessFactors, please reach out to Emma Morris at delaware (who as of May 2019, is the proud owner of an improved Thrive score of 4!)

Related content