Migration Planning: Before, During, and After
Every day, organizations are moving data and mailboxes to the cloud and between cloud tenants. In fact, BitTitan has been used by 46 thousand customers to migrate 25 million users since MigrationWiz hit the scene. We make migrations fast and easy, but it’s still vital to have a solid migration strategy to make sure your project results in happy users and minimal work disruption.
IT professionals who’ve completed a lot of migration projects often hear that they make them “look easy.” The secret is planning. Experienced IT pros know that good planning – and the right migration tool – will save money, shorten timeframes, and avoid pulling personnel away from other projects. A sound plan will also decrease the likelihood of embarrassing complications, data loss, or a migration failure.
Strategies for your cloud migration
Your migration approach will depend on your company’s objectives and current situation. A common strategy is the “lift and shift” approach. This entails moving all data and software as-is to the new tenant. With the lift and shift approach, existing applications run unmodified in the cloud environment. It may seem like the simplest plan, but it can mean missing out on opportunities to optimize software or reduce cloud storage volumes.
A second popular strategy is to modernize as the organization migrates, identifying new applications or software updates that will provide productivity gains or cost savings in the cloud. The more you plan to change or modernization during your migration, the more complicated the project becomes. But doing the work as part of the migration could end up saving resources in the long run.
The how, what, and why of moving applications
An important part of migration planning that’s often overlooked is stakeholder buy-in. This means identifying those who have a stakeholder interest in each application being used by the organization. They’ll want to know their role before, during, and after the migration. This includes how they’ll prepare users, whether there will be downtime, and what to expect after the move is complete. Some organizations choose to start by moving easy, highly visible applications in order to build success stories. Stakeholders will want to have input into the timing of an application move.
Each application to be moved should include a risk assessment to make sure it will perform as expected in the new environment, and if the application has the ability to be migrated at all. It may be wise to plan an upgrade of legacy applications for the cloud, but in some cases it’s better to leave them behind until a better solution is identified.
It’s not always obvious pre-migration which applications should be moved and when, but giving stakeholders a chance to weigh in will help reduce time-consuming complications.
Your post-migration plan
A migration isn’t done when it’s done. Congratulate your team on getting all data and mailboxes to the right place and all applications working properly, then it’s time to maximize your organization’s new cloud-enabled capabilities. Innovative collaboration tools, like those in Teams, can significantly increase productivity, but only if user adoption is part of the plan. Training, best practices, and ongoing communication will help users integrate new tools into their work. At the same time, administrative work needs to be done behind the scenes to maintain a well managed, secure environment.
There are many advantages to the flexibility built into modern collaboration programs like Teams. But this can also lead to sprawl that consumes cloud resources and complicates data management. Migration planning is a good time to outline governance policies with clear entitlement levels that also allow the organization to be nimble and responsive to work group needs.
Your migration plan should detail the project before, during, and after the move. This will this make sure the implementation team is on the same page throughout the project. And, incorporating stakeholders and users into the planning process will reduce surprises on all sides. A well organized project with the right strategy reduces timelines and stress while keeping the budget in line.
MigrationWiz is the tool of choice for migrations across the globe. If you’re planning a migration and would like additional guidance, check the BitTitan Knowledge Base or contact us today.