When you are implementing Dynamics NAV/Business Central or any ERP system, migrating data from your existing system into the new system is a key component of the implementation process.
From our experience over the last 20 years, this Data Migration task on the Project Plan is often underestimated from both a complexity and time point of view. Typically, key tasks in Data Migration are:
- Data cleansing of existing data – this sub-task requires the end-users to review their data and delete data that they do not require in the new NAV / Business Central.
A typical example here would be customers, where customers that you have not dealt with for X years (and which have no open entries) will not be transferred through to the new system. It also entails the review of the customer data to ensure that all fields are correct. Improve the quality too – making sure the data is in the correct fields – e.g. city in the City field etc.
- Data Loading. – this sub-task covers the loading of the data into the new NAV/ Business Central, a good example is the list of cleansed Customers from above. The Data Load function uses setup parameters & setup data to validate the data being loaded. In the above example this could be the Invoice Payment Terms. Customers with Payment Terms not complying with those in NAV/Business Central will be rejected. In practise this can be an iterative process, where both static parameters and actual data are adjusted. This inevitably leads to the task taking longer than expected.
- Timescales – The complete Data Migration task needs to the completed, tested & signed-off by the start of the Conference Room Pilot (CRP), which is usually scheduled at least 1 month before GO-Live. The CRP is the opportunity to validate the quality of the migrated data. The CRP will include a full data migration.
Finally, it is also important that the actual physical time it takes to complete the entire Data Migration task is noted as this needs to be scheduled into the Go-Live plan.