How to Execute a Successful Migration During a Divestiture


Migrations during a divestiture may be tricky, but they don’t have to be impossible or full of headaches and setbacks. Follow these steps to ensure a smooth migration. That will allow end users to feel confident that their data is secure and easily accessible.

Data migrations of all types are complicated projects that must be executed carefully and thoroughly to ensure success. It is not uncommon to consider what data migrations might look like during mergers and acquisitions (M&A), but what about the other side of that coin, Divestitures?

Most commonly, divestitures occur when management decides to cease operations of a business unit that no longer meets or is aligned with the company’s core competency. Mergers and acquisitions may also cause a divestiture, as some business units may become redundant afterward.

During a divestiture, companies need to move data from one environment to a greenfield or existing environment. To achieve this, they will need to execute successful migrations and understand the best ways to prepare.

See also: All Diamonds, No Rough: Don’t Overlook Data Quality During a Migration

Challenges of Migrating Data During a Divestiture

There are a few challenges that managed service providers (MSPs) must consider when migrating data during a divestiture. It is important to identify which environments are involved in the divestiture and if it makes sense to move to an existing one or create a new one. When breaking up a company into smaller organizations, MSPs must first identify what system they’re going to divestiture into. The CIO or IT director must understand whether they are migrating to a greenfield environment or an existing one.

MSPs can turn to migration tools to make the process more seamless and stress-free. A migration tool can assist with the discovery process of the migration and ensure the parent system and the target systems are compatible. With a robust tool, IT teams and CIOs can focus on key needs, such as the design plan for the migration as well as implementation. A customer success team is also helpful in planning ahead and relieving IT teams of certain responsibilities to allow them greater ability to manage more dynamic business needs.

Security Measures

MSPs must pay extra attention to the security of their infrastructure during a divestiture migration, especially between the parent company and divestiture. For MSPs that will migrate to a greenfield environment, they will need to set everything up from scratch. The parent company and divestiture will need to align to ensure there are no holes in the infrastructure. Without this alignment, systems will be susceptible to attacks that can harm operations.

Security parameters regarding data may vary from region to region, so it is imperative to consider regional standards, too. There are geographical restrictions that many countries have in place regarding data migrations. Ensure proper research and discovery are conducted regarding what types of data can migrate from the source to the greenfield or the existing environment during a divestiture dependent on regional law. This discovery may take a lot of time, but it will be well worth it in the end.

Migration Tools

Migration tools can make for a successful divestiture because they offer predictability for the MSP. By using migration tools that have bundles, MSPs can pick an option that will work for their migration and can know exactly how much the project is going to cost to move their data, so there are no surprises.

Migration tools help streamline divestiture migrations due to their predictability. Some migration tools even offer insights into real-time reporting, where MSPs have access to all of their logs on demand rather than needing to chase tenants for log reports throughout the migration.

Some migration tools offer customer success teams. These teams ensure the end user is set up for success from start to finish. The best time to utilize a customer success engineer in the process of divestiture is as soon as the pre-sales are done. Handover between pre-sales representatives and the customer success team is an essential step to the success of a divestiture migration. This will ensure there is added support during the migration process and an individual to support any issues or problems that may arise with the tool being used.

The customer success engineer should be assigned from day one to ensure proper integration into the project and a full understanding of the end user, their business, and their needs is developed.

Ensuring Success

Once the migration is underway, MSPs can ensure success by regularly monitoring the project timestamps. Always ensure that each file is truly complete by checking for any errors that may occur during the transition. One simple way to do this is to compare file sizes. Business leaders should not wait for the tool to tell them the migration is complete because some files may not have migrated, causing headaches for the end user and delaying the project.

Alongside this, business leaders should always ask questions during a migration. Many MSPs follow a particular standard operating procedure (SOP) and only ask the questions that are in the SOP. However, there are always hidden factors within a customer environment that may be overlooked if proper care is not taken. The last thing a company wants is to reach the final day of migration and have forgotten to include a particular data set. If the MSP remains inquisitive during every step of the migration, they are more likely to catch missing or forgotten files.

For example, if EMC SourceOne was used in the past but hasn’t been in years, there could still be stubs pointing to the email system that no one is aware of. If situations such as this aren’t caught before the end of the migration, all of that data will be lost.

Finally, training is an essential key to ensuring a smooth transition and setting the end user up for success once a divestiture migration is completed. Historically, many MSPs overlook the need to train staff on the new system after a migration is complete. Transitioning from one system to another can be overwhelming, as each application has its own functions, style, and best practices.

To combat this, business leaders can offer training to employees unfamiliar with the environment the company is migrating to. Implementing onboarding to train staff on the new systems will ensure everyone feels confident, is on the same page, and can work across teams effectively once the migration is complete.

Migrations during a divestiture may be tricky, but they don’t have to be impossible or full of headaches and setbacks. By following these steps, IT professionals can ensure a smooth migration during the divestiture process, allowing end users to feel confident that their data is secure and easily accessible.

Tosin Vaithilingam

About Tosin Vaithilingam

Tosin Vaithilingam is a senior solution architect at BitTitan, where he works on the Customer Success Team dedicated to providing customers with essential migration services such as project scoping, planning, and proof-of-concept. Tosin works closely with BitTitan’s customers to identify their migration needs, address complexities, and develop effective migration plans. His areas of expertise include migrations, solution architecture, mobile device management (MDM), system/server installations, and technology sales.

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