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Data Center Migration Best Practices - Part 3

Updated: Jan 28, 2021

Whether your organization is looking to migrate services to the cloud or physically move to a new data center, migrating your infrastructure, data, and services is not for the faint of heart. It requires a tremendous amount of planning, resources, and energy to achieve the end result of a seamless move.

In Part 1 and 2 of our 3-part series, Data Center Migration Best Practices, we walked you through Planning to Plan and creating a Detailed Migration Plan. Having completed each of those important phases, you should be ready to actually execute your data center migration, right? Almost! In Part 3, we’ll share some of our own lessons learned and a little advice to help your Move Execution and Go-Live event go without a hitch.

It’s Go-Live and your team is ready to push the Start button so they can begin the much-anticipated event. It’s exciting, but stressful. Everyone has worked so hard to get this to point and there is a lot at stake. With that in mind, it’s important for all to keep a clear head and remain objective. Before you begin, take some time to go over expectations and protocols to help keep things on track. Some advice to consider:

  • Ensure all migration team members know their role and what is expected. Everyone has a part to play and it’s expected they will carry out that role flawlessly. But stuff happens! It’s critical your team members know if something isn’t going as expected they need to escalate and communicate quickly. Time is of the essence during Go-Live and any delays can have a significant impact on downstream activities.

  • Take the time to create and document an escalation and triage process. This should include:

  1. Identified Issue / Triage Manager(s), their phone numbers, and if the move is a multi-day event, when each person will be the appointed contact.

  2. Centralized Issue Register that details each issue, impact, priority, and owner.

  3. Designated Triage team members. They will be responsible for reviewing the issues and ensuring they are addressed in a timely manner.

  4. Pre-scheduled triage meetings to coordinate activities and resources.

Review and circulate the Triage Process with the entire team so they are well prepared on how to respond if something doesn’t go as planned.

  • Follow the plan to the letter. As part of Migration Planning, you and your team tested and re-tested the plan to create a consistent process. It’s critical that everyone follow the plan as expected. But if a deviation is required or an unexpected deviation occurs, team members need to communicate these changes immediately. Any changes to the plan need to be assessed for potential downstream impacts.

  • Work as a team to solve problems. Go-Live is not the time for heroics. Every person on the migration team is an important piece of the process. Communicate, share information freely, and ask for help when it’s needed.

  • Don’t be afraid to declare a No-Go if things are not progressing per the plan. Declaring a No-Go can be extremely disheartening given the months of preparation and hard work. However, moving forward when the cards are stacked against you will surely spell disaster. It can mean significant negative impacts to your business and months of cleaning up the aftermath from not pulling the plug at the right time. The Go / No-Go declaration is a critical decision point intended to ensure the right decision is being made on behalf of the business. It prevents emotion and fear from getting in the way and allows the defined process and facts to dictate the best choice possible.

  • Closing out the migration project can’t happen until you get the final thumbs up from your business stakeholders that all systems are satisfactory and there are no anomalies. The triage process should be ongoing until all issues identified by the business as requiring attention are addressed and closed.

Successfully completing a Data Center Migration project is a true testament of your organization’s planning skill, teamwork, and commitment. Your final step - Take the team out to celebrate the achievement and reward everyone’s hard work for making your organization’s Data Center Migration a success!

Successful Data Center Migrations with Tsource

Tsource has been helping our commercial and government clients in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. maximize their potential, right-size their infrastructure, and achieve their business and technology goals since 2003. We've helped customers deliver faster leveraging an Agile approach, improved system availability and performance by modernizing their technology portfolio, and successfully matched hiring managers with great IT talent. Experience matters and with over 30+ years of IT experience in the most diverse and complex environments, we are passionate about helping our customers get the most out of their technology investments by providing them with cost-effective, right-sized solutions. Tsource is a ISO 9001:2015 certified Woman Owned Small Business delivering IT Solutions, Managed Services, and Staffing. If you are interested in working with us, contact us online or give us a call at 410-970-6669.

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