Making A Cloud Migration Communication Plan

Making A Cloud Migration Communication Plan

At Mover, we make cloud migrations easy - at least the moving part. Communicating that move to your employees? That’s where you come in.

Here’s a very concise start for building a communication plan for your users before going through the grittier stages of a cloud migration project.

How does it all measure up?

All of your people have different needs and dependencies, so it’s paramount to know what those are with respect to their data. Take a shopping list of all the departments, contact their management, and identify key concerns in their processes and current applications.

Measuring Your Cloud

Keep in mind that while cloud storage is essentially just a container for your files, people might be using it with third-party apps or for more advanced collaboration, depending on the tools available to them.

For example, is data in your CRM tied to your Dropbox for Business account? Does your Accounting department have spreadsheets shared from OneDrive for Business to a third-party firm?

Who’s Your Audience?

Who's Your Audience?

You need to list the stakeholders in the migration and decide what information needs to be relayed to them.

Chief Executives - Your CEO (et al) will need good, succinct information about the how’s and why’s of the migration if they’re not already directly involved. This includes costs, benefits, and expectations that can be passed on - including a clear picture of what a successful migration would look like.

Management - While requiring less overall information than Chief Executives, they need a similar granularity when it comes to the department they’re in charge of. For example, the Sales Manager will need to know how operations will be affected - can sales people still work over the weekend if needed?

End Users - These are your bread and butter employees; most importantly, they need to know when changes are taking place and who to go to with questions or if issues arise. Key questions to address would be:

  • Why are we moving?
  • How does it impact me?
  • What are the benefits to me or the organization?
  • How disruptive is this change going to be?
  • What are the differences between our old system and the new one, and how do I reconcile these?

Third Parties - If people outside your organization have access to collaborate on documents, this could potentially be interrupted and require re-sharing of data. It’s a good idea to send them a friendly email so that they aren’t affected by the changes.

Support Staff - If your organization is large enough to have specific support staff for other employees, these people will need a reference sheet of every detail that could affect all of the above parties.


Every migration is a custom project, so keep in mind that there are a lot of variables at play. Ideally, you’ll want to contact us in advance of the migration - how long in advance depends entirely on the scope of the project.

Keeping In Time

From there, you’ll want some initial emails to executives and management, warning of an incoming change. As you get closer to the migration, get your end users involved in the discussion. During the migration, it’s best to notify your users to not delete or rearrange any files, but new files are okay up until a certain point!

On that note, it’s important to specify a deadline for any changes before a final incremental pass. For smaller migrations, this could mean telling your users that Friday will be the last day using Google Drive for Work, and Monday they will be opening up their brand new Box Enterprise accounts.

You’ll also need to firmly state when users will be using the new cloud storage system and that after that date, changes in the old one won’t be saved after. See below for a sample correspondence:

ATTENTION: Important Information Regarding Cloud Data Migration
As you know from prior emails, we’re moving from Google Drive for Work to Box as our cloud storage provider.
To assist in this data migration, we’re asking all employees to finish working and upload any last changes to files in Google Drive by 17:00PT on Friday, November 13, 2015. Changes to files or data in Google Drive after this time will not be moved.
On Monday, November 16, 2015 all employees will be using Box. Please see email titled ”Box Training” for more information on going forward.
Questions and concerns can be directed to your immediate manager and/or our technical support staff via the usual channels.

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