Migrating to an enterprise solution: How to avoid pitfalls and problems

Often organizations get tripped up because they don’t define the operational paradigm

In most instances, the move to an enterprise system will involve coordination among multiple parties — departments, facilities and vendors. It is crucial to communicate clearly with all internal and external groups involved, including key integrators, the IT department and others.

The integrators will be called in to install the various applications ranging from fire and security to CCTV, intrusion and visitor management. Your IT team can assist with the move to a virtual environment and will monitor these needs during the process.

One other element to consider is employing an additional service team to perform a premigration audit of all your existing systems. This team would assess rogue inputs and outputs or any other errors in the system, such as potential problems in your database.

This audit can identify hidden information not logged to the journal, broken hardware, credentials that may not have been moved from one system to another, and other service-related reports.


Creating a team

As we’ve stated from the start, migrating successfully is all about having a plan. And having a plan is all about setting up a team. Determine who will be on the team, who will set up the plan to migrate data from your existing access control systems to the enterprise solution, and who will maintain the system and data once it’s up and running.

Ideally, the team should involve human resources, security operations, IT and server management. Once you create the team, assign task owners. This information should be clearly documented in a master schedule, which also defines the deliverables for each team member. Doing this will allow you to determine any issues that may arise, which can be stored separately until identified and an import solution is put into place to properly handle the update of personnel and credentials.


Preparing for the unknown

The final issue to address is preparing for the unexpected. Not easy, of course, but critical nonetheless if the desired outcome is a successful migration. By fully understanding the system and everything surrounding it, you are better prepared for potential problems. So be aware of firewalls, virus protection, malware, backups, data sources, desktop policies, upgrade policies and the like.

The preaudit of all hardware components will help determine a part of this. So have a plan in place and know what details you want to include ahead of time.

Now you are ready to proceed with your migration, knowing you have the tools in place to launch your project and see it through to completion.


Jason Ouellette is director of Product Management, Tyco Security Products. He can be reached at jouellette@tycoint.com.