3 Things You Should Never Do When Migrating Data to Your Intranet

Many people approach intranet migration with the attitude that all they need to do is move all their content onto the new system and everything will work perfectly. However, this is not always the case. Not only can this approach lead to user experience problems, but it also denies you the opportunity to manage and refine your content database.

Take the time to read about the following three mistakes that most people make when migrating data to their intranet so you can avoid them in your organization.

1. Thinking All Content Is Equal

Many people make the mistake of thinking that all content on their current system is equally valuable. This leads them to the conclusion that they should migrate all their content over onto the new system. However, migrating all your content is very inefficient.

A better approach is to perform a content audit to find out what content you have on your current system. You can then analyze the content to figure out what you actually need.

Your content audit should answer the following questions:

  • How much content do you have? This lets you know how many gigabytes of storage you’ll need.
  • How old is your content? Older content is less likely to be useful and you may be able to delete it.
  • What’s the metadata of your content? Metadata lets you see how old your content is and who created it, and may even shed some light on its subject.
  • How valuable is your content? This can be difficult to deduce. You can go through your content manually and decide the value of each item, but this is time consuming. A better approach may be to use an algorithm to assign a value to each item based on factors such as when it was last opened or edited.

Many businesses overlook the importance of a content audit, but it can be extremely worthwhile. A well-designed content audit can reduce the amount you need to migrate by roughly 30 percent, and in some cases can even cut the total amount in half.

2. Not Defining a Governance Strategy

When you migrate data to a new intranet, you need to define a governance strategy for your content. This strategy should let you know which data you need to migrate, what you should archive, and what you can delete. All companies should have a content governance strategy in place anyway, but if you don’t currently have one, an intranet migration is a good opportunity to develop one.

3. Forgetting to Do a Gap Analysis

Most organizations upgrade to a new intranet because they want to reap the benefits of a new or better platform. However, moving to a new platform can throw up some unexpected problems in the way your intranet works. A gap analysis identifies important differences between the old and new platforms, so you can predict problems that might occur after migration and address them now.

For example, your content might end up being stored in surprising places on your new intranet, which could make it difficult for your users to access it as part of their daily activities. Use your gap analysis to predict issues like this and address them before they become a problem for your users.

Topics: Corporate Intranet Tips, Knowledge Management & Governance, Migrations
Daniel Cohen-Dumani

Daniel Cohen-Dumani a Partner and Market Leader of Microsoft Solutions and Services at Withum. He has more than 20 years of experience in the field of computer science and software development. He is a frequent speaker at SharePoint conferences and user groups, and a recognized SharePoint and Office 365 subject matter expert.