Preparing your Data for ILS Migration to Koha
Once you have decided to switch to Koha (great choice!) there are a few steps you can follow during your migration process with ByWater Solutions to ensure a successful experience for you, your staff, and your library.
- What happens first? After you have extracted your test data, a member of the migration team will analyze and map your data. It is important that during this period, you confirm counts of your bib and item records (to make sure you exported them properly) and to participate in the mapping. This is a great time to implement changes to the organization of your records, if you would like! If there is any data the specialist was expecting to see that they do not see in your test files, they will let you know.
- What to expect during the mapping process? A member of the migration team will map your item record fields and borrower record fields to those of Koha. They will provide this information for you on a document, so you and your library can review. The migration specialist will map where they think the field should go but it is important for you to review the maps because you know your data way better than we do! And remember, once the mapping has been finalized for your specialist to load the data onto your test site you can still make changes to the way the data has been organized for Koha.
- What do I do during testing? This is the most important part of your migration process!! You will receive your test site a week or two prior to your training and training happens about a month before your go live weekend. During this time it is so important to do all of the testing that you can! This not only gets your familiar with Koha but it ensures all the data you are expecting to see is there and that it has been loaded in a way that makes sense for your library. During the testing you can make all the changes you want! Just let your migration specialist know what needs to be changed so they can make those updates and have your data perfectly tuned in for your live site! The more testing you do will allow you to see all of your data and make sure there are no surprises when you begin using your live Koha site. You can find a testing plan here: http://bywatersolutions.com/koha-testing-plan/
- Now what? At this point, you have fully tested your Koha test site and feel comfortable with the way the data is represented in the system. First, it is important that you have not added any new codes to your data since the initial mapping. If you have, your data specialist's scripts will not be looking for them. Your specialist will notice additional codes and let you know if they were present in the final data but it much cleaner if you do not add any new borrower category codes, item types, collection codes, or shelving locations because your specialist has individualized scripts created that will mold your legacy data into what you have agreed on together for your Koha live data. It it very important, because of this, that you extract your data in the exact same way you did for testing!
Following this final extraction, it is important not to add any new data to your legacy system, as it will not be reflected in your brand new Koha system when you receive your site.
If you follow all of the above steps, you will have beautiful data starting with the very first day of your live Koha system (without any surprises)!!
Read more by Addie Van Salisbury