The critical aspect in Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) is consolidating IT Systems of both the organizations and the key element in this is integrating data of disparate systems. Since data is one of the key ingredients for successful digitization of an organization, a well thought out data integration strategy is required for enabling new business models.
Jade proposes following execution methodology for a successful data integration between the two merged entities:
Business Integration Strategy
One of the pre-requisite for kick starting a data integration strategy is to understand which organizations business process needs to be adopted for each business function of the combined entity. Business leaders from both the organizations need to understand each other’s business processes across various business functions like HR, Finance, Marketing, Operations etc. and brainstorm to finalize the best suited one for the combined entity. In some cases, the business leaders decide to take processes from the best of both and create a new or a hybrid business process. Business Integration strategy should define business rules to bring in a consistent view of master entities like Customer, Product, Vendor, Location etc. Once this is defined, it would become easy to integrate and migrate all the historical transactions associated with these master entities.
Discovery & Planning
- Understanding the IT systems / Applications in scope
- Identifying Key Business / IT SME’s for each of these applications and building relationships
- Understanding complexity, subject areas and business processes encoded in each of these applications
- Finalizing the applications (whose data needs to be migrated) that needs to retired and the applications (whose data needs to be integrated with retiring applications data) that needs to be continued for running the business
- Finalizing the technology, tools & design for data migration and consolidation
- Finalize the high level project plan along with cost and resource requirement for the data integration of all the applications in scope
It is important to have a pilot phase before embarking on a full-fledged data migration project as it provides an early opportunity to tune the integration strategy and technique. As part of pilot phase couple of diverse complex applications needs to be identified for data integration Business Benefits of having a pilot phase are:
- Prove out whether solution is envisioned, migration methodology is selected, and business engagement models selected are appropriate or not
- Helps in understanding business and delivery challenges of implementing varied complexity of business applications
- Lessons learnt from pilot implementation along with discovery / analysis findings would play critical role in arriving at a realistic estimate for complete data migration of all the applications in scope.
Once the pilot is complete and before the project starts, it is important for the project team to build documentation templates, re-usable frameworks and solution accelerators based on the project common themes and patterns. These assets would help in reducing project execution timelines and cost while improving the overall quality of the project deliverables
Data Integration & Migration
Once the pilot is done, if the applications that are in scope are in large number, then applications can be migrated in multiple waves, potentially delivering each wave in 2 to 3 months cycle. Applications will be logically grouped based on parameters like common functionality (or) features, business priority, complexity and any other dependencies.
Following execution approach is followed for integrating and migrating each application:
- Conducting data profiling / analysis
- Identifying data transformation rules for source to target data mapping
- Tailoring data migration processes using Data Integration Tools
- Migrate data from source application to target application
- Conducting IT and business validation of migrated application
- Stakeholder review & approval for migrating application into production
Please contact Jade Global for further details on M & A: Data Integration Framework