How to Get Started on Your Data Migration

This post is Part 1 in an ongoing series about data migration. This guide can be used to implement solutions for Salesforce.org, Apttus CPQ, and Salesforce CPQ data migrations. The series will also touch on solutions for other CRM or ERP systems.

 

Where to begin?

Let’s Talk About Data Migration
What is it? Simply put, data migration is the process of transferring data from one application to another. The types of data migration we run into most frequently are:

  1. Org merge data migrations
  2. Sandbox data migrations for Salesforce
  3. Sandbox migrations for Apttus and/or Salesforce CPQ
  4. Legacy data from other CPQ or ERP systems

 

What to Consider
The first step to a successful migration is to understand what you’re up against. There are five major factors to consider — from the start of estimation all the way through to implementation and testing:

  1. How many sandboxes do you plan to have? This will help you plan timeline and budget. A typical setup to consider is one development and one QA/production environment.
  2. What is the volume of data and number of objects you’ll need to move? This will impact load time and the number of records processed per day within the Salesforce limit.
  3. Will the migration be an automated or manual process? This will also have a huge impact on time and budget.
  4. Who will be in charge of the data cleansing process? Will it be you, the client, the consultant, etc.? When possible, we recommend the client handle this, because they are involved in the day-to-day business ops.
  5. Consider incremental data — the data between the full load and the cutover data. You will be loading this extra data on production, so be sure to factor this into the load time and data preparation.

 

Data Mapping and Load
When starting the migration process, you’ll need to start with the data mapping from one org to another. This is especially important when data comes from other CRM/CPQ/ERP applications, because the process is different than when data comes from the same application. For example, if the data is going from one sandbox to another or from the same production sandbox org, the data mapping will be easy because the fields will be the same. But if it is from SAP or some other CPQ, the source and target fields will be different. This is why the data mapping process is so important.

 

Before Wrapping Up Mapping …
It’s important to find External Ids or the Combination Keys in order to insert and update records. This is a critical point in the process that will be very helpful if something needs to be fixed later or if you need to do updates. Finally, find out if any transformation of data is required. If so, can this be automated using a tool that you choose for data migration, or does it need to be manual?

 

Up Next:
Stay tuned for Part 2 in this series, where we will be looking at what tool(s) are right for your data migration.

 

 

About Bala Sadayappan
Bala is a Technical Architect in Statera’s Salesforce CRM Practice. Bala has eighteen years of experience in IT as a Technical Lead / Architect and maintains certifications in Salesforce.com (Administrator & Developer), Apttus Configure Price Quote (CPQ) and XAE.