The epic Microsoft Windows 10 Migration: six steps towards a single truth

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In less than two years, Microsoft will end extended support for Windows 7. With an estimated 69%* of corporations still to migrate to Windows 10, now’s the time to start thinking and planning a successful transition. Finding a single version of the truth means getting to the crux of the migration issue: ensuring everyone can see the big picture and work together to find the most efficient and cost-effective solution.

Whether a large PLC or not for profit, the Windows 10 migration has the potential to be a significant piece of IT project management. As multiple teams take ownership of individual elements of the migration, it will inevitably lead to separate agendas, conflicting priorities and duplication of information.

All this manual cranking of databases and endless Excel spreadsheets will take extra time, extra people-power and extra money. And; most significantly, take highly-skilled people away from their day jobs. So what’s the answer? How do you stay focussed on the bigger picture, and achieve a result that works for all teams, across the business?

To help simplify what could be perceived as an epic piece of project management, we are sharing six steps to help organisations find a single version of their migration truth to accelerate their journey.

1 Identify your truth finder
Windows 10 is not just one more step along the Microsoft road. We’re told it’s going to transform the way IT works in every organisation. You need a project manager who is experienced, open-minded and knowledgeable enough to lead you through the migration process. With total ownership of the project, it will be their job to identify the true potential of Windows 10 and decide how you want it to benefit your users and your business.

2 Take stock today….why wouldn’t you?
Before you can move forward effectively, you must know exactly where you are now. ,Audit the technology and software used by every department and all individuals then identify any overlaps or similarities. Automate your software and asset audits to produce reliable data, then you can ‘Blueprint’ your business thoroughly. There is no point in delaying this exercise: the data gathered today is vital and valid whether starting your migration tomorrow or in a year’s time. You can also give your service vendors a more accurate target to price against.

3 Value human intelligence
There are some fantastic tools to help automate your audit and rationalisation process , but never underestimate the importance of listening to your teams. Technology enables people to excel. So ask your people how can it help them fulfil their role more effectively?

4 Be brutal
Be honest, if applications aren’t being used; get rid of them. If they’re not fit for purpose, find a new application, or design something to meet your needs. Migration presents a fantastic opportunity for housekeeping and some real licence savings, so clear out the IT clutter. Bring rationalisation to the front of your project so reclaimed licences become part of the ROI story.

5 Identify trapdoors early: tackle them don’t hide from them
The biggest migration killers are applications that are crucial to your business but fell out of support years ago; they only run on the current operating system, therefore presenting security vulnerabilities! Identify these early and look at your options. Finding an alternative or redeveloping old code is expensive and not a guarantee. Moving applications to the cloud is a viable and instant alternative to maintain the application. Do your homework now, make decisions best for your business and avoid costly, panicked and rushed decisions which store up problems for the future.

6 Look ahead, plan ahead, let everyone see what’s happening
Teams with their own agendas are productive but are you all rowing together to the same goal? With a single master version of all data, ‘traffic controller’s’ can see near term and future workloads and plan. Changes to deployment priorities shouldn’t be a surprise, but the impact on teams should be instantly understood. Give everyone visibility of changes and their workloads can react and a positive ripple takes place down the workflow. Keep the data live, keep the data accurate and keep people informed.

If your organisation is not yet prepared for the end of Windows 7, we would be more than happy to speak with you to see how APPtechnology can help your organisation through the transition.