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Populating the model should be approach as any other data migration exercise - for that is exactly what it is.

Phase 1- Scoping

This phase should be a very short initial piece of work to provide a first level assessment of the scope and cost of the data migration.

It is where the source data is analysed, the scope of the work is determined and the overall risk is evaluated in terms of the complexity of the work involved.

The primary deliverables from the Scoping phase are:

¨      A high-level estimate of the number of days and cost to complete the data migration.

¨      A high-level statement of any major issues identified at this stage that may affect the delivery of the migration.

¨      A high-level work plan for the migration and estimated timeframes.

¨      An estimate of the resources required to support the migration.

¨      Provides a specific estimate of the number of days and cost for the subsequent Discovery phase.

¨      Provides a budgetary anticipated final cost estimate for subsequent phases.

Phase 2 - Discovery

This phase comprises the detailed work necessary to determine the exact costs and plan for doing the migration exercise. It ensures the Enterprise understands the scope of what is being undertaken, including detailed plans and costing’s.

The primary deliverables from the Discovery phase are:

¨      Agreement of the Meta-model to be populated.

¨      A detailed understanding of the scope of the migration activity that is to be undertaken, including identification of the Datasources (source files, locations, formats, etc that are being migrated from).

¨      An understanding of the quality of the existing information and the options available for data cleansing.

¨      Identification of any hardware and software that will be required.

¨      Documentation of the issues and risks with the proposed migration.

¨      Identification of the key resources from each of the parties involved, who will be required to ensure success, including an assessment of resource capability and the training that may be required.

¨      Production of realistic plans and costs for the work.

Phase 3 - Provision

This phase comprises the work required to gather together all of the information that currently exists into one place in preparation for the analysis phase.

It is likely that as this phase progresses other information sources previously unknown will be discovered.

Phase 4 - Analysis

This phase is the core of the work that needs to be undertaken which invokes analysing and understanding the information gathered. This analysis will consider the following:

¨      Format - The format for fields may not be consistent. E.g. a field meant to indicate the cost of maintenance may be expected to contain values in thousands (10), but may contain the actual value (10,000).

¨      Structure - There may be structured data in free-format fields which therefore contain information that should be structured but are not.

¨      Duplication - This is the most common area where problems can exist. There may be two, three, or even more “lists” of the same information. E.g. more than one group has a list of applications.

¨      Validity - The values that are contained in fields may or may not confirm to what was originally meant. E.g. a field meant to indicate the importance of an application to the business may be expected to contain values such as “C” for Critical, “I” for Important, “N” for No important, but may contain unexpected values such as “X” or “-“

¨      Currency - The information may be recent or may be out of date.

¨      Integrity - There may be related information that should exist but does not. E.g. An application may say it utilises a database but the database may not be defined.

¨      Integration - Will the information in the tool replace the information in its current form or require integration and synchronisation. (To be carried out in Stage 4 of the Modelling discipline).

Phase 5 - Cleansing

Having analysed the information in the previous phase, this phase takes this knowledge and uses it to manipulate and process the information into valid, current and consistent data suitable for importing in the Model.

This is where difficult decisions regarding which information is “correct” or not are made and therefore the time and resources required to perform this critical phase should not be underestimated.

If this phase is not performed or is done badly it makes the entire exercise utterly pointless. Most Enterprises ignore this phase which may go somewhere to explain why many modelling efforts fail.

Phase 6- Loading

This phase is concerned with loading the information into the tool’s repository and the associated checks and testing to ensure correctness completeness and consistency.


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Questions to ponder...

Does your Enterprise approach modelling as a Data Migration exercise?

Are there clear responsibilities with respect to Scoping, Discovery, Provision, Analysis, Cleansing and Loading?

If you do not do one or more of the above, does that cause issues and problems?

If so, what are the effects of those issues and problems?

What will you do to solve them?

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