Who We Are and How We Operate – Part 3
The Migration Team

For those of you just joining, this is the third of our seven part series on our inside look into Avatara and how we operate and service our prospective and current clients. If you’d like to read an overview of the company you can do that here. If you’d like to see our previous post on how our sales process and team works you can find that here.

In today’s article we are going to talk about one of the most critical roles within Avatara, our Migration Team. We’ll touch on who all is involved in the migrations process, what migrating to CompleteCloud looks like, and how this role sets up for the transition to day to day life with Support and Account Management.

Once we receive a signed contract our migration team is immediately notified and the process of migrating a customer over to CompleteCloud begins. Before we get into the actual migration process to CompleteCloud it will be helpful to understand all the roles and parties involved in a migration.

There are typically three parties involved in migrating a new customer to CompleteCloud: Avatara, the new client, and our local IT partner. There are very rare circumstances where an onboarding client lives in a remote area where there isn’t a local IT partner, but the vast majority of the time a local IT partner is involved. The local IT partner will be the onsite support to help with the physical migration process and for when any work needs to be done onsite. These partners frequently are current IT providers and work with their clients to gather all the data and information we need to start building the client’s new environment.

After a signed contract we begin setting the partner and client up in our custom built support portal and schedule a kick off call with all three parties. On this call we’ll discuss timelines, expectations, and will go over the onboarding process as a whole so everyone is aware of what is going on and when. To help simplify the migration process we broke it up into three phases. We’ll touch on each phase and what our team is doing behind the scenes to help provide visibility into what we are doing to ensure the customer has a smooth transition to CompleteCloud.

Phase 1

Phase 1 of our migration process focuses on data collection, server and machine builds, and user accuracy.

Client and Partner’s Role:

A data collector will be shipped onsite and will help collect information to help us build and prepopulate user info into our customer portal. The local partner and client will work together to verify each user is accurate and that the information we pulled from our data collector isn’t missing any new users. This will also be the time that old users or former employees will be scrubbed out to ensure we have the most clean and up to date list of employees so we can make sure we build the correct amount of machines.

The final objective the partner will do in Phase 1 is running a data script and placing TeamViewer (this program allows our support team to take over a user’s computer in the case they’re stuck and need help) on each user’s computer. This data script copies each user’s specific profile data: What software, printers, and shares they’ve accessed or used in the last 30 days. This information is then reviewed and filtered into the portal for Phase 2.

Avatara’s Migration team:

While the partner and client are doing this our migration team will be quality checking and verifying all the information that is entered into the portal. We will also start building business, applications, exchange and file servers, ensuring they’re they required size needed by the client, and making sure the clients specific applications work well in the new environment.

Then the customer’s basic virtual machines are built, which will be customized for each specific user in Phase 2 from the data collected from the script the partner ran on each user’s computer.

Phase 2 and 3

Phase 2 is entirely about software, shares, and printers and Phase 3 focuses on reviewing and assigning each user’s software to make sure it’s accurate. Since these are so tied together we’re going to combine these Phases together here.

Client and Partner’s Role:

The partner’s primary role in Phase 2 is to go through and add, edit, or remove software, shares, and printers from each user with the customer in the portal. This will provide each user with the specific applications and accesses they need to do their day to day responsibilities. The second part of Phase 2 and 3 for the partner will focus on is working with our Migration Team to get the correct network equipment ordered. Everything from VPNs, switches, and wireless access points will be put together and ordered.

Avatara’s Migration team:

As the partner and client go through choosing which software, shares, and printers each user needs to have access to, our migration team is:

  • Ordering, activating and installing software licenses on each machine
  • Working to establish printer and security groups
  • Copying and transferring data from the old network to new network
  • Quality checking each VM
  • Begin shipping client hardware (thin clients, monitors, network equipment, etc)

Phase 4

Phase 4 is the final step in migrating a customer to Avatara’s CompleteCloud. We refer to Phase 4 as “Migration Weekend”.

Client’s Role:

A key group of users will test the environment starting the Monday before Migration Weekend. They will use the new environment just as if they were trying to work a normal day. This allows Avatara to obtain feedback on anything that needs to be fixed and updated before the business is officially cut over to CompleteCloud that weekend.

Avatara Migration and IT Partner’s Team:

As soon as the office(s) are done working for the day on Friday Avatara and the local IT Partner get to work. We will spend the entire weekend doing the following:

  • Converting old computers to CompleteCloud devices and/or replacing old equipment with upgraded thin clients and new monitors.
  • Cutting each computer over to Avatara’s switches
  • Setting up Wireless Access Points throughout the office
  • Switching network printers over to the new network
  • Testing and logging in to each user

After Migration Weekend the Partner will stay on site to help aid any users that may have questions for Monday and Tuesday, working closely with their Avatara Account Manager. During this time they will be collecting any major feedback to be worked on and after the final punch list of migration items is compiled, user support will transition to Avatara’s 24×7 support team.

Throughout all four phases our dedicated Migration and Implementation Manager maintains communication with our partners and clients; answering questions, clarifying information, following up and checking in on progress, hosting conference calls, continuously checking the portal for information that is missing or asking for additional information that we may need.

Now that the client is officially transitioned onto CompleteCloud they will be supported by two other crucial roles within Avatara, our Support Team and their dedicated Account Manager. We will look in depth into each of these roles in the following weeks, but we will first look at Account Management and how they fit into the overall CompleteCloud package and support model.