SAP Knowledge Base Article - Public

2076569 - Manage Live Forms - Sanitize all rich text inputs to remove bad characters - Performance Management


  • Users are finding bad or strange characters in their forms when they copy and paste data and comments into the form from some other program such as Word. (Note this solution does not apply to data imported or automatically populated on the form)


  • Performance Management



  • User cut and pasted some formatted text into their goal plan or PM form that is corrupting the form
  • A person pasted data into a goal, and then that goal was cascaded to many users which in-turn is now pulled into PM form corrupting it.
  • MS Word actually is an HTML based program. When you copy and paste text from MS Word, you are actually copying a version of html, even though you never see that raw code. When you paste that into your form, you are essentially pasting into our xml code, a random block of html, which may not have fully formed syntax. Therefore, your partial code breaks the form, since it is being displayed into a web browser that can only work with properly formatted html code. While the SuccessFactors application does have built in capabilities of handling this code, it is not possible to handle every possible scenario, so while errors will not typically occur every time someone pastes content into their forms, there will be times when this will break the form.


If the bad content is now already in the form, you will first need to remove it. There is no way for support at that point to correct what is now in the form. All bad or corrupted characters are stored as you see, and there is no way for us to undo what has already happened. Enable the following features, then have the users remove and reneter their comments.


Sanitizing content pasted into your forms.

We recommend you enable the option in Admin Tools > Company Settings > Company System & Logo Settings > . When users copy and paste info from word or other programs, it can contain bad html code and formatting not supported by the system. This in turn when pasted into your form can break your forms. This feature helps prevent that from happening by stripping out bad data we detect.

We also recommend clients also request support to enable the feature "The rich text editor cleans up text pasted from Microsoft Word (currently, this only affects pages that use common Performance Management code)" for their instance when you use RTE. (enabled by support via Provisioning  > Company Settings). This feature works with PM forms and will eliminate most of the issues introduced by people pasting bad data into text fields.

When a user copies data from Word, Excel or some other webpage and pastes it into their review, it can contain bad data and cause forms to break or behave incorrectly.

While these options should prevent most issues, due to the free nature of html it is not possible to handle every possible scenario, so while errors will not typically occur every time someone pastes content into their forms with the above options on, there will be times when this will break the form. When this occurs the user can manually "sanitize" this by trying the following steps.

  • Copy the content as they originally did (usually from Word, Excel, a webpage or some other program)
  • Paste the content into Notepad
  • Notepad is not an html based editor like MS Word or Excel are and will 'sanitize' this by stripping out all hidden html and converting it to truly plain text.
  • Now from notepad reselect your text and copy
  • Now go to your goal or PM form and paste this plain text into comment field
  • Save
  • Reopen form and confirm that the form now properly loads.
  • Note: some forms may have become so corrupted that only starting from a fresh form will enable you to work with the form. You or your admin may need to launch a fresh copy of the form.


KBA , sf performance manage live forms , LOD-SF-PM , Performance Management , Problem


SAP SuccessFactors HCM Core all versions