Tools4Tools - Episode 2: The migration of Raccoons

Stijn Saenen

You undoubtedly know how big our love for tools like ClickUp and Notion is, at least if you have been following SUMSUM. We have been using these tools for a while now, and we find them incredibly useful, pleasant, and overall work-enhancing. This blog will tell you why and how we migrated all our projects and documentation from other (less favorable) tools to ClickUp and Notion.

The need and the why

Within our mother company, Raccoons, we received the chance to rethink how our combined teams could work together in a future-proof manner. As is very common in many organizations, unfortunately, some legacy software and outdated communication methods have penetrated our organization throughout the years. Some working techniques were no more efficient and productive, so we had to find something to make these processes anew. Hence, a migration.

The how

We decided to have a migration to store all of our information centrally so it would becomemore accessible for the whole organization. We realized that a migration project that affects around 50 people, namely Raccoons' employees, could only succeed if there was well-developed planning. Therefore, the project's first phase consisted of developing a roadmap in which we addressed all different aspects of the migration:

  • Research on how we were going to transfer all data
  • Mapping of things that we needed to migrate
  • Determining the order in which we would deal with the ventures
  • The actual execution of the migration
  • Troubleshooting

We investigated the possibility of automatically transferring all kinds of data to get started. What we already knew, was that most of the to-be-transferred data came from the Atlassian Suite (Jira and Confluence). As you already know, we had chosen to migrate to ClickUp and Notion, so we got to work. Luckily, as ClickUp has extensive features, it can automatically migrate projects, backlogs, and sprints from Jira. Exactly what we needed! In addition, for Confluence, it was effortless to move different heaps of documentation to Notion in one go.

After gathering the necessary knowledge, we started looking at which pages, projects, and documentation we needed to transfer per venture. The reason for this is relatively straightforward. Putting effort into the transfer of data that is no longer relevant or useful is a waste of time.

In hindsight, this turned out to be a good decision, as we discovered that it is not possible to transfer all projects from Jira to ClickUp in one go. We could still automatically transfer projects, but unfortunately, we had to do this project by project.

The 'getting the work done'

The migration

After doing the research, looking at which data we had to transfer, and determining the order in which we would handle all the ventures, it was time for the real work: the actual execution of the migration! Since we had thoroughly researched this process, it ended up being a process that took some time and not much effort.

You should already have realized that such an extensive process cannot be completed withoutproblems or stumbling blocks. Even though we first carried out the process at a smaller venture to identify problems, many other issues came to light during the migration with larger ventures.

An aspect that certainly needed attention was that, for most people, ClickUp and Notion were new tools. To bypass that people needed to figure out these tools independently, we set up several brownbags to explain the basic functionalities that most employees required. In addition, we created a public form within ClickUp where everyone could submit problems orquestions so that we could resolve them together. A future idea is to give a brownbag about common problems so that everyone in the company is fully informed and we don't have to answer the same question several times.

We discovered that many of our colleagues appreciated this way of working, as we created a proper DIY forum along the way where they could gather more knowledge and start to work more efficiently. As this could be useful for anyone, we decided to open-source this knowledge, templates, and working methods. Take a look at ClickUp Compass and subscribe to stay in the loop!

The troubleshooting

During the migration, the biggest problem we encountered was the service desks where we obtained customer feedback on a particular product or service. These forms could not be transferred automatically by ClickUp's import functionality, which meant we had to make them manually. The great thing about this? We have set up multiple service desks now (in ClickUp!)open for those who need access to it.

How did we do this?Troubleshooting. We had to find a way to easily and, more importantly, efficiently set up different service desks. Here, we decided to proceed according to the exact step-by-step plan we had for the entire process:

  1. research - 2) find out what needs to be transferred - 3) decide on the order - 4) the actual transfer - 5) troubleshoot.

Using this method, we quickly concluded that we only had to move one type of service desk. For this purpose, we created a template that we can adapt specifically to the customer's needs. After doing this, it is only natural first to test the new service desk with a customer, gather feedback, and, if necessary, adjust some things the customer noticed.

The conclusion

Long story short: we made the right choice in migrating to Notion and ClickUp. The new tools are easier to use, have more functionality, and, perhaps most importantly, are cheaper than the previous tools we used. The migration process may have taken longer than estimated, but the results are already noticeable. Overall, we can look back positively on a project that has impacted an entire company and its employees.

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