August  15,  2017

Application migration is a fact of life for businesses today. Companies commonly move application programs from one environment to another. Smart leaders include stakeholders in their migration plans.

Keeping stakeholders informed as the migration draws near is critical to the success of the project. Ideally, strong communication means everyone affected will be working to support the move. This helps the business avoid disruption and meet its objectives.

One way to prepare stakeholders for migration Go-Live is to deliver “T-Minus” communications.

My Go Live Approach

T-180 – Six months before the Go-Live, send an email to impacted stakeholders that the migration is coming. Give them the basics: the reasons, the timing and information on how to prepare.

T-60 – Two months before the migration, send another email to those affected, letting them know the migration is getting closer. Repeat the information you sent before, and emphasize preparation and help from the migration team. Most important are the migration window, IT team contact information, and any other ways to ask for support.

T-30 – One month before the migration, send a similar email. Continue to ask for questions and concerns.

T-21, T-14 & T-7 – Three weeks, two weeks and one week prior to the migration Go-Live, email again. Use any questions you have received from users to anticipate the information people might need; you can proactively answer questions for the larger group.

T-1 – One day before the migration, send final instructions to users. Remind them of the migration window and contact information.

T-1 Hour – On the day of the migration, send an email asking stakeholders to shut down any systems or applications involved in the move.

T-0 – Once migration is underway, email users to let them know the process kicked off as scheduled. This will also help you catch anyone who didn’t comply with the shutdown request.

T+ Migration Updates – During the migration, send emails to impacted stakeholders based on migration milestones. These messages assure stakeholders that the migration is proceeding as planned – it gives them confidence in the team and the process.

T+ Go-Live Complete Announcement – Once the migration is complete, send a notice to inform stakeholders that the migration was successful and the application is ready to be used again.

There are many ways to share information for a migration. This is an approach I’ve used successfully. How have you approached this type of work?