The delegates were a nicely balanced group of end clients with significant migrations underway, specialist consultants, software vendors and consultancies. Some were looking for guidance others for reassurance that they were heading in the right direction. I’m hoping and the feedback I'm getting tells me we succeeded in both areas.
I think one of the key talking points during the day was industry analyst Philip Howard of Bloor Research's comments about the role of entity models in the data quality and ETL phases of a migration programme. For Philip the ability to speak in the language of the business – talking maybe about Customers and Products not about obscure field names – was the mark of next generation software.
I have to say that I broadly agree with him. I’ve long been banging on about the use of metadata models in data migration projects for ages (as long term followers of this blog will agree). In fact right now on one of our projects we are trying to reach an understanding about the use a migration model as a focus for DQR activity.
Good then to see Philip and I agree. Of course, as our positions in the Data Migration biosphere would dictate, I tend to be of a more pragmatic disposition than Phil. If a model is useful then use whatever you have at hand to create it. If the software we are using is not as far advanced as we would like but it has features we find useful, then we use it, making up for deficiencies within the architecture of the particular migration solution we are using for a particular programme. We have to do what we can with what we have right now to solve today's problems.
The use of Data Models is something I will want to return to in future blogs.
But for now let me tell you about what I’ll be doing next. On Wednesday evening (BST) I'll be following up my earlier overview webcast with one on Business Engagement. Here I'll be looking at how BE is not a stand alone activity but how it overlaps into the other activities you carry out on a Data Migration project.
About the author
John Morris has over 20 years experience in IT as a programmer, business analyst, project manager and data architect. He has spent the last 10 years working exclusively on data migration and system integration projects. John is the author of Practical Data Migration.