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Data Migration: Turning Risk Into Opportunity

Data migration is a critical event in any business application deployment. But it can be hindered by a few common pitfalls such as poor planning, misalignment between business and IT stakeholders, and inattention to data quality. A poorly executed migration can delay your go-live and compromise the integrity of the data in the target application, leading to severe and costly business disruptions. So how can you manage these risks and drive long-term value out of your data migration initiative?

The benefits of a solution-based approach

To minimize data migration risks, software vendors now provide a solution-based approach that combines industry-leading data integration software with packaged content and professional services. To start, vendors essentially repurpose traditional extract, transform, and load (ETL) technology for use in operational data migration. Second, they offer pre-built data models and business rules for data transformation, cleansing, and validation, tailored to the target application. This approach accelerates a migration project while delivering all the business benefits associated with standardization and reusability.

Turning risk into opportunity

Because the platform and business rules remain available after go-live, this provides a solid foundation for ongoing data governance, going far beyond the timeframe of the initial migration. A one-time migration event becomes the starting point for an enterprise-wide data management program – enabling companies to leverage information as a strategic asset and competitive differentiator.

The changing role of the implementation partner

The stakes are now higher for system integrators. Customers are no longer looking for single-use migration code at the cheapest possible cost. Instead, they want a true partner that will add long-term strategic value in addition to managing migration risk. Companies should look for integration partners with the following qualities:

  • Deep technical and functional domain expertise
  • A proven data migration methodology, integrated with an overall implementation methodology for the target business application
  • Proven experience managing large-scale projects in an enterprise-level, mission-critical environment
  • Repeatable service offerings that enable rapid, cost-effective delivery and reduce services-to-software spending ratio
  • An advisory role that drives alignment between IT and business stakeholders for ongoing data management at the organizational, process, and technical levels
  • A track record of collaborating with other services providers to meet specific project needs


Why SAP?

SAP is a leader across all disciplines of enterprise information management (EIM). Our state-of-the-art data migration solution leverages the market-leading SAP BusinessObjects Data Services platform and pre-built SAP Best Practices templates. Ourproven ASAP implementation methodology, and world-class consultants can help manage even the most complex data migration project. SAP Services has extensive experience helping clients drive business transformation and manage information as a strategic asset. Our consultants routinely collaborate with an extended partner ecosystem to execute effective projects, leveraging the entire SAP portfolio of EIM solutions across the lifecycle of the data.


The success of a data migration project is directly tied to the choice of an implementation partner. A team with the right expertise and enterprise-level transformation experience is crucial to mitigating risks while keeping a project on schedule and on budget. Furthermore, data migration should serve as a catalyst for ongoing data management and strategic transformation. Look for a partner experienced across all aspects of data management, from strategic to tactical.

SAP Services is a leader in data migration and adept at shaping enterprise-wide data management programs. To find out more about enterprise information management services from SAP, go to

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  • Agree, Jerome. Data migration is a great tactical project to tackle. Employ basic information governance best practices, too, to give you a head start on your next project via reusability.