SharePoint Migration Common Issues

This will not be the first time when we bring up this point, but: migrating SharePoint to Office 365 on a corporate level is no easy task. We’ve already covered the topic of successful SharePoint migration providing you with a 5 steps roadmap on how to plan and execute the entire process. We strongly recommend reading through the article in case this particular subject is somewhat new to you.

Dmitriy Yasinskiy January 23, 2017

So today we are planning on expanding the topic a little bit broader, and talking about some potential issues that you might face when dealing with SharePoint migration. Obviously, we will not only give you the list of problems and leave you to deal with them, but rather try and give possible advice on how to avoid a potential obstacle.

Know What Issues to Expect

If you’ve been following our blog, then it shouldn’t come as a surprise that some issues in SharePoint migration arise even before the technical process takes place. So now you probably think that the root of the problem is the lack of planning. In a sense it is. Most people assume that because they migrate to just an online version of SharePoint, they are going to receive virtually the same product but in the cloud. And although the two versions are similar, they are not identical to one another. We have a separate article where we place them side by side and compare their pros and cons.

Differences don’t stop there, in our article we compared SharePoint Online with its 2013 on-premise counterpart at their best. The former has different versions depending on the plan you are subscribing to. So here you have an opportunity to learn all the available plans in order to be sure that you make the right decision for your business.

Choose the Migration Scenario

Essentially, you have three options of how you are going to migrate your on-premise SharePoint to Office 365 or online version and those are:

  • Manual
  • Hybrid
  • 3rd Party Tool

We are going to touch on the first one only briefly, because it is the least practical one of all, and you shouldn’t probably even consider it. In order to complete manual migration, you can use Explorer View and move files to a newly designated location. So, what’s the problem with this method? Essentially, you will lose all metadata. This can be avoided by using templates, but still, this is the least desirable solution of all.

The idea behind the hybrid is to run on-premises SharePoint with Office 365. So users can navigate through both environments with Active Directory without even noticing the transition. Usually, this works great as a transition stage and it also allows keeping the heavily customized server infrastructure that will not otherwise be supported on Office 365. However, simply going hybrid will not allow you to move sites from one place to another.

This brings us to the last scenario. To be precise, this is the only logical way of going about SharePoint migration without damaging data and actually moving files to the cloud. But after purchasing the tools you still might face some difficulties.

Directory Health

This is perhaps the most common technical problem that you might face, while in the process of migrating to SharePoint Online. The migration itself involves identities federation and directory syncing, and some Active Directory (AD) health issue might slow down or disturb the synchronization of directories.

Luckily, this can be avoided by using free tools from Microsoft like IdFix. It will locate any potential problem with AD health and, as it can be seen from the name, fix it.

Effect on Bandwidth

The last SharePoint migration common issue that we wanted to mention is possible impact on the bandwidth. While in the midst of the process, the effect will be truly noticeable and slowing down of an entire IT environment can affect corporate workflow.

But usually, truly damaging impacts of such sort arise only when the migration is executed carelessly. Constant streamlining, careful scheduling and proper automation of the process will make sure that the effect on bandwidth is minimized.

We hope that you found this article helpful. If you would like to migrate your on-premises SharePoint to Office 365 or hybrid environment, then feel free to contact us at Digital Design.