We know migrating to a new intranet platform can be stressful, much like a migraine. Ask any IT manager, (s)he can list down a dozen reasons why.
But don’t worry. With the right migration plan, you can relieve the pain and get your new intranet up and running fast and stress-free.
In this blog post, we’ll share 6 steps that will help you move to a new intranet without a headache.
STEP 1: DO THE CLEAN-UP.
Moving to a new house is a great opportunity to clean up your old clutter. You don’t want to move messy, irrelevant data into your modern intranet. Take some time to review everything you have in your existing intranet and decide what you really need.
If it’s compulsory to keep all of the data due to legal reasons for example, you can choose what can be archived and store this information in an archive site. We suggest making these files read-only to not clutter up your new intranet.
STEP 2: CHOOSE THE RIGHT WAY.
This is a very important step in your intranet migration plan. In order to choose the right way to migrate your data, you first need to determine what content and how much of each kind of content you’ll be moving to the new intranet. This can be:
- Data (files shares, user data)
- Sites, lists, and libraries
- Workflows, pages, views, and alerts
- Metadata and version history
- User permissions
The amount of content to move to the new intranet will in part determine how much (manual) effort the intranet migration will cost. For large enterprises with a huge quantity of data, it’s advisable to use tools to automate these tasks. At Involv, we use ShareGate to move our customer’s data to their new, modern intranet.
STEP 3: TEST, TEST, AND TEST.
It’s necessary to perform multiple tests before starting the actual migration. This will help to identify potential issues that could occur and gives you the time to find solutions for them.
Start a migration test with a small amount of data, a folder or a single site, for example. Then review the results. If the result is not what you expected, remediate any found issues and test again.
Keep testing until you get the expected results. Note: if you’re moving to Involv, our intranet experts will do this heavy lifting for you!
STEP 4: KEEP EVERYONE INFORMED OF THE CHANGE
Before doing the intranet migration, it’s crucial to keep all employees informed of the upcoming change. All departments and employees need to be aware of this change so that they know the impact on their business.
For end users, make sure that you communicate the why. Why is this migration necessary? Explain the benefits or how the new intranet supports them in their work. Also, keep everyone updated on the progress of the new intranet plan.
STEP 5: PREPARE FOR THE MIGRATION DAY.
After doing all preparation work, it’s time to migrate to your new modern intranet. You may consider migrating over the weekend so that the migration does not affect the business or the users.
Don’t forget to inform your end-users of the migration day(s) so everyone is aware of its impact.
What we usually do when moving to a new intranet, is keeping a read-only version of the ‘old’ files. This way we ensure users start using the data in the correct location while making sure nothing gets lost on the way. The old files are then phased out after a set amount of time.
STEP 6: SUPPORT YOUR END USERS.
Moving to a new intranet will require a behavior change from your employees. Change is hard and can’t happen overnight. But it’s possible when you empower your end users with training, guidance and support.
The key is to make your users feel comfortable and confident using the new intranet. Consider implementing customized training sessions for different groups of employees, based on their job type. (At Involv, we can provide these trainings for you).
Once your users start using the new intranet, encourage them to give feedback. Listen to that feedback and improve if necessary. It will show that the intranet is really made for them, which helps to accelerate user adoption.
Want some extra tips for intranet adoption, make sure to check out this blog post.
Migrating to a new intranet can be overwhelming at first. But it doesn’t have to be a headache. With the 6-step plan above, you can be confident about a smooth transition to a new intranet.
You may want to consider working with an intranet vendor or a migration specialist that has experience with successful intranet migrations. With Involv Intranet, you’ll have a dedicated expert to assist you along the way. (S)he will help you to make the transition as smooth as possible, doing the heavy lifting for you, from migrating your data to training your admins and end users.
If you need support in planning or executing your migration to a modern intranet in SharePoint, we can help! Get in touch here.
About the Author:
Tim is Collaboration Expert at Involv/Cognit. He builds leading solutions to help people collaborate easier, faster and happier. Connect on LinkedIn.
Bogemans, T. (2023). How to migrate to a modern intranet without the migraine. Available at: https://www.involv-intranet.com/how-to-migrate-to-a-modern-intranet-without-the-migraine/ [Accessed: 23rd October 2023]