In a previous article we discussed how you can effectively remediate files during an Office migration. After migrating to a new version of Microsoft Office, users often have files pulling old data or linking incorrectly. Without identifying and fixing the files, business decisions are made on misinformation. Hidden file problems can result in significant errors, tremendous expense, decreased productivity, compliance violations and ruined reputations.
Enterprises have three options when considering how to deal with ﬁles remediation during migration. But, how do each of these approached affect the ROI?
Approach 1: Fix on Fail. Enterprises that take the ﬁx on fail approach do save on software and resource cost of deploying an automated remediation tool, but also create chaos for end users and IT department. End users’ productivity is delayed as they need technical support and have to wait for IT to ﬁx ﬁle issues. If the issue requires complex remediation, the delay can last longer than expected, and IT will need to divert resources away from important activities. Associate the cost of manual remediation – find, test, open and fix – with more than 5 million files, like most enterprises have, and you’ll realize how costly fixing these kind of issues can get. Enterprises that take this approach run the risk of having so many ﬁle issues that IT could get over-capacity and employees productivity could decrease for an extended time.
Approach 2: Microsoft’s free migration tools. Microsoft provides a free set of tools including Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit (MAP) and the Office Migration Planning Manager (OMPM). OMPM offer a three-tier, color-coding system to classify the level of migration issues found in each ﬁle when conducting a light scan. OMPM does not automatically remediate ﬁles with issues. It can help IT professionals assess the compatibility of older Office documents to the newer formats, but Microsoft’s suite of free tools are not the most effective choice, since it requires IT to process files twice—once for scanning and once for conversion to Ofﬁce 2010, and then open and scan each ﬁle individually to ensure that they migrated successfully.
Approach 3: OfﬁceConverter. OfﬁceConverter is a third-party tool that speeds up the Ofﬁce ﬁle scanning and conversion processes. The solution scans ﬁles for potential data loss similar to OMPM, but also provides detailed information about Visual Basic compatibility issues, and links to other ﬁles. Each ﬁle scanned is assigned a numeric severity based on the most severe issue contained in the ﬁle. This helps IT prioritize which ﬁles to address ﬁrst. Although, OfﬁceConverter requires initial training, it is intuitive enough for an IT staff to use without additional vendor support.
OfﬁceConverter requires a software investment, but the return on investment is high when considering the resource time that will be significantly reduced.
The automation capabilities of OfficeConverter minimize the need for manual efforts, reducing costly and time consuming aspects of an enterprise-wide migration program.