SAP Knowledge Base Article - Public

2081458 - Candidate Search with "Is Exactly" and "Contains" Criteria - Recruiting Management


When searching for candidates via Candidate Search, how can the search results be narrowed down? For example, the filters "Is Exactly" and "Contains" can be used within the search criteria.


SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting Management

Reproducing the Issue

  1. Navigate to Recruiting
  2. Go to the Candidates Tab to access the Candidate Search


Each time a candidate search is prepared there is an option with criteria “is exactly” or “contains”. Make sure to select the correct one.

Specifically for the “contains” criteria, if the searched text has spaces, the spaces are “translated” by the system in logic OR. In the below example searching for a zip code with criteria “contains” and text “T3H 5E8” (where there is a space between T3H and 5E8) will search for all candidates where both texts T3H and 5E8 are contained.

Also when using words that are not complete, please use the wildcard characters "*", as if the value is not tokenized it will not return data from the search. For example, if the candidate's last name is Lichter. When searching for last name with criteria "contains" and text "Lic", it will search for all candidates where the word Lic is included.

If the criteria is changed to “is exactly”, then only candidates which are exactly with zip code “T3H 5E8” are found. The space between "T3H" and "5E8" is treated as normal character and is not “dividing” the two texts. This search criteria reads word by word, so considering this same example if you type ony "T3H" it will bring candidates where the zip code is only "T3H", candidates with zip code "T3H 5E8", or candidates with zipe code as "4T8 T3H".

Still, with the "exactly" criteria, the system will only understand the terms that have an exact match with the word being searched. So, when searching for a user named "Robin", users like "Robins" and "Robinson" will not come as a result. Under the same idea, when searching for a department called "Admin", departments like "Admins" or "Administration" will not come as a result. On the other hand, spaces " ", slashes " / \ ", dashes "-", and ampersands "&" will separate one term from the other and, from a search perspective, understand the result as 2 (or more) completely different words. As an example, when searching for the department "IT", results will be departments like "IT/SALES", "IT and Sales" or "IT-SALES"

There are only three search criteria available in the currently system: "Contains", "Is Exactly" and "Starts With". But, with an enhancement request, it gives the ability to input an idea to improve the functionality and add new criteria. All enhancement requests are reviewed by our Product Management team and, if successful, are developed and implemented in a future product release. Please provide feedback and ideas at For detailed steps on how to raise an enhancement request please follow the Knowledge Base Article 2090228.


RCM, Candidate, Search, Criteria, Contains, Exactly, Wildcard, Characters , KBA , sf candidate search , sf recruiting management , sf recruiting reports , sf criteria , sf contains , LOD-SF-RCM-CAN , General Candidate Issues (not Offers, not Profiles) , How To


SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting all versions