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An Introduction to Cloud to Cloud Migration

Every time someone mentions the words “cloud data migration” we just can’t help but think about a company that is currently moving all their stuff to a new place. Usually, companies move all their stuff from internal servers to the web solution and vice versa. Yet, what happens when you need to do a cloud to cloud migration? We’ve scanned the internet for some answers and suffice to say, those that are there are quite primitive in execution. Or in other words, they aren’t exactly helpful.

This is why we’ve decided to tackle this issue. After all, there are cases where the company is already in the cloud environment. Let’s assume that you’re using a cloud-based help desk system and can’t help but wonder how you can move tickets. You might be reasoning that the process will be quite easy because both are in the “cloud” environment but that is not always the case.

Yes, even something as simple-sounding as a cloud to cloud migration still requires some degree of expertise and preparation. Which is exactly what we’ll cover but first, we’d like to talk about why companies migrate between cloud solutions. Thus, with all this in mind, let’s get started!

Why Companies Migrate Between Solutions

Cloud to Cloud Migration

The number one reason why someone would perform a cloud to cloud migration is the need for a more cost-effective or effective solution. There is no reason to pay more and get less if there are options that do the exact opposite.

Another case is when a company has multiple offices across the country. Each office might be using different tools, which makes things more difficult. Consolidating everyone under one umbrella makes it easier to manage and share data.

Similarly to our previous case, cloud migration is required when two businesses merge into one living organism. This will ease the process of managing assets, as well as it will be easier to handle different types of requests.

Last but not least, cloud migration is needed when you have to move to a new tool due to the fact that your current solution is about to be closed, discontinued, or hasn’t received an update in a while.

How to Prepare for a Cloud to Cloud Migration

Now that we know why cloud migration can take place, it’s time we take a look at the migration process. Or more specifically, the preparation process. Thus, preparing for cloud migration can be a lengthy endeavor but in the end, it’s still worth it. Whether you are moving from an email solution or to a newer cloud system, your first priority will be a plan.

Step 1: Devise A Plan

No matter what you do, don’t start doing it without a thought-out plan. We suggest that you take into consideration all deadlines and milestones of the migration process, as well as see how the migration process will impact the workflow and how you can mitigate the effects of this transition.

Related article: How to Get Started with Your Help Desk Migration Project Plan

Step 3: Make Multiple Backups

The reason why it can be risky to move your data without a backup is the fact that not all cloud solutions are made equally. You might hit snags when migrating data, files can go corrupt. Therefore, we suggest that you make at least 5 backups in case things go south, as well as compare the target architecture (the place where you plan on migrating) whether it can receive the information in the first place.

Step 4: Prepare the Target Platform

First thing first, you should probably head over and create an account there and configure everything that involves migration. If you have no idea what to configure, here’s what our clients do when they move from one help desk to another. They need to create custom ticket fields and support agent profiles, as well as poke a few native settings. So, check if there’s anything you need to create, turn on or off.

Step 5: Take a Test Drive

While this might seem obvious, it’s best that you create a small dummy transfer file and test how things are moved and what issues might arise. This will not only prevent data loss but will save you a lot of hassle. Always test everything beforehand and put down the results and changes you’ve made.

This will help you identify what things you are doing wrong and what changes you need to make to run a smooth cloud transfer.

Hidden Rocks In Cloud To Cloud Migration

A lot of vendors put their soul into creating a powerful, robust architecture that will address user needs. To understand better the importance of software architecture, let's define what it is in the first place. The answer is that a software architecture (often dubbed as the engine) is the bare bone of the system and it is technically the driving force of the platform in question.

Let's imagine you have a folder, that has two more folders inside it. One is dubbed Folder 1 and the other is called Folder 2. Each of the folders can only contain a special kind of file. For instance, Folder 1 can store .ini files, whereas Folder 2 can hold .mp3 files.

The developers taught the software architecture where to search for specific files, meaning that the results will be fast and it won't take forever to find the desired file. Before such techniques were introduced, the system had to scan the entire database to find your desired file.

Now that you know how a software architecture operates, we’d like to point out that not every architecture is made equally. In fact, it’s often the exact opposite because each vendor wants to maintain full control over their product. This means that those tools that are built using conventional engines will most likely won’t be able to communicate correctly with those that use proprietary engines. This makes cloud to cloud migration a difficult task to accomplish.

Picking the Right Method

Deciding how you will run the cloud to cloud transfer is a crucial preparation step. Check what kind of file the source system outputs and what the target can accept. It can be anything, from CSV, XML or JSON. You can also check if the platforms of your choice have a dedicated API that will allow you to move stuff. In any case, your best bet would be the method that can move data the fastest, as well as capable of retaining the structure.

For instance, in CSV, it can be hard to reproduce the exact same structure, meaning that you will need a reference to the file in the future. Another issue might stem from the fact you might have a lot of records to handle. This means that building a file manually can take forever. In fact, there were cases where a file containing 25 thousands of tickets took three months to build, and even when it was built, still a lot of errors popped up due to unnecessary commas, quotation marks, etc.

As for XML’s, the process revolves around the fact that you need to convert it into a CSV but then again, it will take you a while to prepare the file. Lastly, there’s the API which is by far the best way, if you have a dedicated IT team that is. Indeed, if you have time and resources to develop a script that will move all your stuff, then more power to you.

Lastly, you can always try and use a specialized migration tool. This one is like a lottery as not every tool is capable of moving stuff correctly. Especially those that are free. Whereas there aren’t that many paid solution.

Need A Hand?

If you are looking for a way to migrate your data between cloud-based help desks then we can help.  We built an easy-to-use tool that can help get your data where you need without involving the IT team. Or CSV files. You can try our Free Demo Migration right now!

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