The success of your business processes correlates with the quality of your company’s data. And in a time where organizations are constantly gathering information, effective data management starts with knowing when it is time to adopt new company databases. One of the most critical best practices for maximizing the value of data management systems is the “database migration”.
This guide will demystify database migrations, providing you with the means to prepare for them appropriately and ensure a seamless transition.
What is a database migration?
A database migration is a process of transferring data from one database to another. It can consist of moving from an on-premise database location to a cloud database (for example, Azure Managed Database), or migrating your company’s database from an outdated version to a new/current version, such as moving from SQL Server 2014 to SQL Server 2022.
It is a crucial operation for companies that need to upgrade their databases or consolidate their information into a more relevant storage system. Businesses may choose to migrate their databases for a variety of reasons, including improving performance, reducing costs, or enhancing data security with an up-to-date tool.
Why is a database migration important?
Databases provide you with the data storage capacity and business intelligence to make more informed business decisions. But like with any piece of technology, databases can become outdated. A migration can help you move data from a legacy system into a modern solution to save time and resources. Additionally, newer systems provide better security and data protection, reducing the risk of data loss or breaches.
Migrating to newer company databases can also help consolidate any data you have collected over time. When your business’s information is disorganized, it can take longer for your employees to locate essential details, resulting in slower processes and less-than-impressed customers. A migration provides companies with the chance to organize their data into a more efficient structure, allowing for faster retrievals of information and more operational productivity.
What risks are associated with database migrations?
Migrating data from one storage space to another is a delicate process that is not devoid of risks. From the actual rollout of the migration to the safety of data, companies need to keep an eye out for the following risks when transitioning between company databases:
Falling victim to migration risks can set your business back. Without an effective migration and data management strategy, your organization will not be able to leverage the maximum value of its data. On the other hand, preparing for and undertaking a planned migration can help you unlock the full potential of your company databases.
How to prepare for a database migration
If your business is not prepared to handle a migration, you will find that the entire process is stressful and lengthy. On the other hand, preparing for a migration can help you avoid any issues that may arise during the process.
Here are a few best practices your business should take advantage of to ensure a smooth and successful transition:
Make a plan
A data migration plan allows businesses to assess their data systems, implement solutions to prepare them for transfer, and ensure a smooth and seamless transition of their data from one system to another. A data migration strategy can help you outline how your company wants the migration to play out, and how it will impact business operations.
The plan is unique to every organization. But typically, it can present you with the following benefits:
Assess your data landscape
Company databases can be fairly spread out across an IT environment. So, before initiating any type of migration, you need to be aware of the data within your networks.
Examining your data models and databases will give you a stronger understanding of your company’s data, its types, and how it informs your processes—this can make it easier for you to choose what information needs to be migrated. Also, an assessment can help you uncover potential problems that pose risks to the migration process.
Back up all data
During the migration process, there is an increased risk of data loss. Backing up data before a migration ensures that you and your team have a copy of all important information in case of any mishap. In the event of data loss, you can quickly restore your data without experiencing any significant downtime.
Test your migration strategy
It is important for organizations to test their data migration strategy before executing it. Testing the strategy helps businesses identify any potential issues or errors that may arise during the migration process and take corrective action to prevent any data loss or system downtime.
This can help you optimize your strategy and ensure that it meets your specific business needs and requirements. During a test, it may be a good idea to transfer small amounts of data first, and then increase the amount as you become more confident in the process.
Migrate to new company databases with expert help
Migrating information to new databases can be highly complex. To ensure that your company databases contain the right information and are functional, acquiring the assistance of database experts is crucial.
The database migration specialists at Everconnect can assist your business with everything from leveraging raw data to transferring information to new storage systems. With the team at Everconnect carrying out your database migration, you can feel confident knowing that your new company databases will be secure and optimized for more efficient data management.