Migrations to Dynamics 365

Migrations to Dynamics 365

Having an up to date CRM system is part of the foundation of a growing business. It allows an organization to grow and adapt to changes in their customers and industry. Businesses with an outdated system can feel irreversibly tied to it. They may want to migrate to a new system, but are unable to answer the fundamental question of how to make the jump to a new CRM system. As a result, they remain stuck with a solution they don’t want. In this article we will review the three steps common to all CRM migrations, focusing on how they apply to Dynamics 365.


Three Steps Common in Data Migration

Data Model customizations

First, replicate your current data model in Dynamics 365. Every table and field in your system must have an equivalent in D365. Many CRM solutions do not allow for extensive customizations. Fortunately, customization is an area where D365 thrives.

Modeling your data requires hard work and excellent communication. A team with a deep understanding of the data on both systems must be responsible for successful data modeling. Knowledge of how the organization makes use of the original database is essential.

In addition to this, it may take several meetings to hash out a good data model. But as a result, the hard work will make data migration much easier. The end result should be a 1 to 1 mapping of entities and fields from the old system to the new one. A customization professional can then create entities, fields and relationships not already in D365.


User Interface (UI) customizations

Next, modify the Dynamics 365 user interface. It should be a clean, simple design that improves on the old system. In most cases, D365 can mirror the look and functionality of the old system. Dynamics has an extensive toolbox of features that should enhance your end users’ experience. Most noteworthy, in Dynamics 365 most modifications involve low or no-code solutions.

Old CRM systems might require time and money on custom development to achieve key functionality. If you do require custom development, Microsoft has a rich library of sample code explaining how to extend Dynamics 365. Developers familiar with JavaScript or .NET will have no problem learning the Dynamics framework. As a result, this step of the process should be the quickest.


Data Migration

Data migration is the process of moving data from one system to another. While this might seem pretty straightforward, it needs a well-planned strategy and focused experts to eliminate any failures or issues.

A complete data migration strategy prevents a subpar experience that ends up creating more problems than it solves. Aside from missing deadlines and exceeding budgets, incomplete plans can cause migration projects to fail altogether.


A strategic data migration plan should include consideration of these critical factors:

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