Data migration is the moving or copying of data from one system to another. As the digital landscape changes and servers need updating; companies become less reliant on their old hardware and are choosing to migrate their data to the cloud. There are numerous benefits to migrating, but before deciding to commit, there are five things you should consider.

Build a case

Weigh up the benefits and critically analyse whether migration would be the best option for your business before taking it up with management. The behavioural story will be a good basis for development, as it will provide executives with the evidence that migration would be beneficial, or not in some cases. It is critical that the business buys into the migration as it will make the process run more smoothly.

Test the waters

Migration can be a challenge as data integrity should be maintained throughout the process. The key is to therefore ensure minimal disruption and downtime. The company should test the waters before committing to the migration, and test the new technologies, so that when the migration is enforced, it is a smooth transition.

Experts are at hand to help you through the process, offering advice and addressing concerns. They are available to help with training and mentoring staff too. It is worth seeking their expertise, as they will be able to guide a business through the migration procedure.

Price it out

There should be a number of incentives to take the step towards data migration, the reduction of costs is an obvious benefit, but there are also other benefits that should be taken into account.

The cloud can be up and running within hours as opposed to investing in hardware, which can take months to integrate with the business. The cloud offers speed, flexibility and scalability. If these factors are important to the business, especially if the functions of the company are continually evolving, then migration could be the answer to processing data.

Choose the best

Cloud infrastructures aren’t all the same. Some are more efficient and may be more suited to your business than others. Therefore, window shop before you make the investment.

Nick Thompson, managing director at DCSL Software, said: "You need to think carefully about the way you migrate your data. If you are purchasing new software, the vendor will often offer to do it for you. But if you inadvertently provide inaccurate or out of date data, it will be there in your new system and potentially cause problems with the adoption by users. Consider what you choose to migrate, and ensure you skilfully extract the data from your old system before providing it to your new vendor. Sometimes it is better to not migrate data in one go, running your old and new systems in parallel for a period of time, migrating on an ad-hoc basis."

Agile analytics

Take time to review and agree to the mapping of data. It is used as the first step for a variety of data integration tasks, and will be a good place to start before migrating data. It will help a business avoid numerous potential issues, especially those that tend to surface later down the line. By investing time in mapping, the best methods for moving data from one system to another will become evident.

Poor data migration has a detrimental effect on business. Prior planning is imperative. Evaluation will help a business understand whether it needs data migration, once this case is built, it is important that the most applicable cloud infrastructure for the business is chosen. The above 5 factors should help direct businesses find their best solution.

By Hannah Richards, Amplified Business Content