SAP Knowledge Base Article - Public

2088055 - SuccessFactors Instance Synchronization Feature Guide & Need to Know Information


  • Instance synchronization review
  • What is the synchronization feature?
  • How does synchronization get enabled?
  • What objects are supported?
  • Is the sync reversible?
  • Basic checks and key information about instance sync errors and issues
  • What should be provided when opening an instance sync incident?


SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite


Note: If a full/exact copy of another instance is needed, a clone/refresh of the source instance must be created. See KB article 2088117 for further information

What is Instance Sync?

  • Instance synchronization is a means of copying the configuration of your multiple SAP SuccessFactors instances. This enables you to "push" new configurations from one instance to another, such as from your Test instance to your Production instance.
  • For example, from a production instance to a test instance. You’ll be able to copy over templates, competency libraries, route maps, and more. To use this new tool, please see the below documentation on how to enable and configure.

What items are supported?

  • These are the Instance Sync Artifacts that you can copy:
    • Career Development Plan Templates
    • Compensation Lookup Table
    • Competencies
    • Dashboard Settings
    • Data Models
    • Families and Roles - currently only JDM (Job Description Manager) are supported
    • Form Label Translations
    • Foundation Objects
    • Goal Management Templates
    • Homepage Tile Configurations
    • Homepage Tile Groups
    • MDF Configuration UI Settings
    • MDF Data
    • MDF Object Definitions
    • MDF Picklists
    • MDF Rules
    • Performance Management Templates
    • Picklists (Legacy)
    • Rating Scales
    • Role-Based Permission Groups
    • Role-Based Permission Roles
    • System Properties
    • Workflows (Route Maps)
    • Workflow Groups
  •  Clients can run all sync's in test-only mode to preview the sync before actually running Instance Sync.


  • If you go to Admin Center -> Data Management -> Instance Synchronization Monitor Tool you can search  your criteria.
    Click on Actions and download the Report this will give you some detailed diagnostics.

What is expected during black out period?

Black out period is time where Production and Preview data centers are on different release versions. Release schedule can be found here. During this time, the following artifacts are not allowed to be synced until both SOURCE and TARGET instances are on the same version.

  • RBP Permission Role
  • Foundation Object  > Dynamic Role
  • Foundation Object  > Position Dynamic Role


Is the sync reversible?

  • No. For this reason clients are encouraged to run in test-only mode first and clients are cautioned to back everything up, export picklists, competencies, and forms templates before this is enabled and run for the first time just in case you find there is data you had not intended to overwrite and need to restore.
  • IMPORTANT: Please back up everything and in case you need a system restore please see Solution KBA 2218169 - Data Backup Procedures and Restore Process - BizX Platform


I have an issue with the sync tool. What can I do / check ?

  • General checks:
    • During setup:
      • Make sure the admin users have required permissions to perform instance sync on target and source for selected objects as well as instance sync permissions.
      • Don’t use the URL 'DC' to set-up the sync as this is deprecated. Use 'DC' in the sync setup in provisioning.
      • Make sure popup blocker is disabled when trying to setup the instance sync in provisioning, as the system will trigger a popup after you setup the source and target instance information to allow you to define which objects will be allowed in the Sync tool.
      • Please note that when Pairing instances, the tool only allows pairing of Company IDs / Tenants provisioned under the same customer.

    • When using the feature:
      • If you get a popup stating “The following are a list of artifacts and their dependencies that have not been selected” it means you may not be able to sync the selected object as it depends on other items which are highlighted in red.
        You will still be able to trigger the sync of the items, but the copy might fail as the dependency validations will not be met.

      • When Syncing permission groups, you need to ensure that the criteria for these permission groups exist on the target.
        For example :
        • If you Sync a permission group we will not validate if the users (who are part of the group) exist on target. The only validation will be that the group creator (on source) exists on target.
          o If you sync a group based on specific data model element this same element needs to exist in the target
          o etc.
        • If you have no instance visible in the drop down menu then the initial setup was not completed successfully. The provisioning setup will have to be reviewed / re-triggered.
        • If the Sync is failing, make sure that the target instance admin used by the sync has the correct RBP permissions assigned as well. The admin user will have been provided during the initial setup from the back end.
        • Go to the target instance, identify the permission role that grants permissions to the target admin user, then review the role and make sure the correct permissions are enabled in the "Manage instance synchronization" section of the permissions.
  •  Other key takeaways:
    • As a best practice please follow this sync order:
      1. MDF Picklist

      2. Data Model

      3. Foundation Objects

      4. Workflow(Route Maps), Workflow Groups

      5. MDF Object Definition

      6. MDF Configuration UI

      7. MDF rules

      8. MDF Data

      9. RBP groups

      10. RBP roles

      11. Rating Scale , System Properties,OBjective template, Form Label Translation, Families and Roles (currently only JDM (Job Description Manager) are supported), Goal Management Templates , Career Development Plan Templates, Compensation Lookup Table,   Competencies Form Templates ,  Dashboard Settings

      12. Homepage Tile Configurations, Homepage Tile Groups

    • Sync Job status in-Progress even after failing in provisioning
      This can be a result of server issue with the job scheduler server. When the scheduler recovered, it tried to re-execute the jobs that were in-progress.
      Since instance sync doesn't support re-executing the jobs that are in-progress the job failed in provisioning and the same is not reflected back in the Instance sync monitor tools page.
      Engineering will work on handling such scenarios in our future enhancements.

    • RBP Role Sync is failing without error message or is unavailable:
      RBP Role sync is incompatible across release. Please check source and target instances are on the same release. This might change with every release depending on the code changes made in the specific release.

    • Options in Instance Sync not available (grayed out)
      Sync is incompatible across release for the grayed out objects. Please check source and target instances are on the same release and try again once this is the case.

    • Picklist sync fail due to "External Code not Unique for companyId”
      External code is now a mandatory field for picklists to perform instance sync. Make sure picklists have this information.

    • Parent-child picklists : we do not display the child picklists on the list in wizard page is this normal?
      Yes, this is expected behavior. However, child picklists will be implicitly synced as a part of the parent picklist sync.

    • Job remains in Ready status in instance sync monitor tool rather than executing straight away:
      Please check if you created a one time sync, or a sync package. If you created a sync package you must trigger the sync for this package. See instance sync guide for details on the package sync.

      It may also be that you have to trigger the job from provisioning.
      We need to trigger jobs manually from provisioning whenever Data artifacts (User Data, Background Data, Goals, PM Forms, SM Positions, MDF Positions) are a part of the sync. A guide is attached showing how this can be done (for support and partners as it requires access to provisioning).

    • Cannot access all the Background elements in Copy Background page in Instance Sync wizard
      Try to resize the page in order to see all elements

    • It was not possible to sync artifacts with names containing special characters prior to release b2005. After b2005, special characters are now supported by the Instance Sync tool on artifacts names.

    • Please be advised that auto trigger of BCUI (Business configuration UI) job is not supported, post sync of data model using the tool. If you see inconsistencies in the BCUI after performing a data model sync, please follow the steps mentioned in KBA 2801085, under "Synchronizing the Succession Data Model with Metadata Framework (MDF)" section.

I checked all the above but my issue is still happening. What should I provide in my incident?

  • If you have to open an incident for support please provide:

    • Provide screenshots from the instance sync monitor showing result of your sync.
    • Provide the CSV files with results from the objects sync.
    • If multiple objects failing, are you able to sync one by one. If yes, which one (or multiple ones) are failing?

For SAP Support Engineers: Check internal memo for additional support instructions when engaging with Engineering.

See Also

If you would like to sync Families and Roles JPB, you may follow the KBA 2970252 - Using "Manage Data" and "Import and Export Data" to Handle JPB Content - SAP Employee Profile


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SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite all versions


Instance Sync - provisioning guide.docx