The Real Key to a Successful Data Migration Strategy

Data Migration Strategy: Start with accountability

Yeah, but what does that actually mean?

So this is a new product?

Data Migration Strategy: Build a Fan Base

  • Negotiate dedicated time from their management. Pay for it if you need to. Just make sure you get it. This rollout is not a “side of the desk” task.
  • Dedicate your own people to pair with the gurus. Make their migration successful at any cost. Be hands-on. Days or weeks at a time.
  • Use their wildest queries/reports to test out the new platform. The goal is to have the guru tell their colleagues this: “Look, if it can handle MY crazy query, it can certainly do yours. Let me show you.”
  • Get their input on tools that would help others and maybe expose some of the secrets used behind the scenes. What will their acolytes need? For example, a tool that compares old results to new results of queries and isolates discrepancies.
  • Importantly: Explicitly give them a job. “I need you to help drum up support and reduce concern. We will work with you on that.”

Data Migration Strategy: Crossing the Chasm

  • Pick a small set of these later adopters. Give them white-glove service.
  • Embed one of your own teams within the business area. Sit side by side and do the work together. The business team gets an assist, and you learn where theory and practice collide. Side benefit: your team learns a lot more about the business for the next project and builds tighter relationships.
  • Minimize the work to migrate.
    - Re-create some of the most used views to mimic the old system. This tactic reduces the customer conversion effort so you can decommission OldData on time.
    - Include tools to compare the old data to the new data will help query/report creators save a lot of time. Add “known differences.” These will include errors in the old data. See? The NewData is better!
  • Conversion Sessions. Have customers bring some real data needs. Convert them in front of a live studio audience. People can see how easy it is and how much better the performance and functionality are.
  • Sponsor lunches, office hours, and other Q&A options. Even a “stump the expert” challenge where you could win a $50 gift card can bring some fun and invite conversation. Be creative.
  • Create a SWAT team that can parachute in and gets off-track areas in the business teams back on track.
  • Turn this group into a success story and share it with the other user bases.
  • Lather, rinse, and repeat.

Implementing a data migration strategy sounds like a lot of extra work. Or is it?

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