The Most In-Demand SAP S/4HANA Finance, Technology, and HCM Skills | June 2024

Brian Trout, Executive Vice President, Sales, Baer
Brian Trout
Executive Vice President, Sales
7 June 2024

As anticipated, Baer has seen a significant increase in demand for SAP S/4HANA expertise in the first half of 2024. Most of the activity is happening in the supply chain and manufacturing space and the public sector, but we are also seeing high demand in finance, technical, and human resources skills—trends that cut across all verticals. Before I dive into the trends, there are two points worth noting. First, when one vertical experiences an innovation cycle, it causes ripple effects across any other industry that requires similar skills. Second, for the public sector to be innovating in parallel with the broader enterprise is unprecedented and is driving increased competition for resources.

As demand for proven expertise grows, we can expect the most qualified candidates to command increasingly higher labor rates. Perhaps more importantly, challenges accessing the right expertise at the right time may even put critical programs at risk.

SAP S/4HANA Finance Hiring Trends

Since so many S/4HANA transformations start with modernization of the finance core, it tracks that the greatest demand is for mid- to senior-level expertise. We’re seeing an influx of requests for roles like lead consultant, functional lead, and subject matter expert.

  • Demand for Funds Management and Project System expertise in the Public Sector is up

    Expertise in appropriating budgets and tracking costs is always in demand in the public sector, and no more so than when addressing the finance core. While we’re primarily seeing demand for Funds Management expertise in the public sector, demand for Project System expertise is emerging in the commercial enterprise as well, particularly in discrete manufacturing.

  • Demand for external accounting expertise is up

    We’re seeing increased demand for a wide variety of external accounting skills, like Financial Supply Chain Management (FSCM), invoice generation, reconciliation, advanced payment management, billing contracts, close to report, and accounts receivable and other billing-related processes.

  • Demand for Central Finance expertise is down

    We’re seeing far less demand for Central Finance expertise in 2024 relative to previous years. Many of our enterprise clients kicked off their S/4HANA transformations by building out their financial core. Central Finance was a good way to fast track into the HANA ecosystem without taking on the full end-to-end journey. It’s conceivable that some SAP customers have moved passed that strategy and are more ready for full modernization.

  • Demand for SAP PAPM is emerging

    We’re seeing emerging demand for SAP Profitability and Performance Management (PAPM) expertise, which is interesting since it’s leading edge technology relative to even S/4HANA. This may be indicative of just how far early adopters are in their innovation cycle, and it’s an area we’ll be watching closely as demand develops.

Interestingly, we have not yet seen any demand for SAP Group Reporting, the company’s replacement architecture for BTP. This may be an anomaly—perhaps demand isn’t there yet and we are just not seeing it at Baer. It may also suggest some clients are going to Oracle and other best of breed solutions that integrate well with the SAP ecosystem. Again, it’s a trend we are paying close attention to.

SAP S/4HANA Technical Hiring Trends

Demand for S/4HANA technical expertise is on the rise with the biggest increases in application development, systems administration, infrastructure, and security-focused experience.

  • Demand for S/4HANA application development expertise is up

    Increase in demand is significantly biased toward application development, particularly in the manufacturing and supply chain space. Requests are for a broad range of expertise including Fiori, integration, data migration, standard ABAP, and next-generation BTP.

    An increase in demand for technical expertise is not limited to the SAP space. We’re seeing a similar trend in the broader technology space: requests for talent with expertise in Mulesoft, Oracle, Snowflake, Tableau, and other best-of-breed solutions are all on the rise. We’re also fielding an increasing number of requests for people with DevOps, zero trust, and cloud analytics skills.

SAP S/4HANA Human Resources Hiring Trends

We’re seeing an overall increase in requests for expertise related to SAP Human Capital Management (HCM), with most of the demand centered around SuccessFactors and payroll. As you might expect, demand for expertise related to legacy ECC skills is declining in parallel as more organizations make the move.

  • Demand for SAP SuccessFactors expertise is up

    Overall, demand for expertise in SuccessFactors is on the rise, but Baer clients are specifically looking for resources with experience implementing it at a global or multi-national level. They are looking for people with proven expertise in multinational regulatory and compliance as well experience managing multiple lines of business.

  • Demand for H4S4 Cloud Payroll expertise is up

    When many of Baer’s clients implemented Employee Central Talent Suite, they focused on areas like benefits, recruitment, and onboarding but steered clear of payroll due to complexity and risk. However, we are seeing an increase in requests for payroll expertise as a percentage of our overall all SuccessFactors requests. Given the 2027 end of support for ECC, a near-term focus on Payroll modernization makes sense due to the complexity and strategic nature of the solution. It's a trend we expect to continue.

If you are interested in additional market insights, hiring trends in specific verticals, or salary data to help you make informed decisions about your S/4HANA or other digital transformation, contact

About Baer

Unlike typical technology staffing companies, Baer is a true enterprise performance partner. We have a deep understanding of the scope of enterprise digital transformation and the highly specialized skillsets you will need at different stages of the process.

To learn more about how Baer can make a positive impact on your enterprise transformation, please reach out to Brian Trout, Executive Vice President, Sales, at, or John Wilson, Vice President of Strategic Accounts, at

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