How we helped leading science and technology university migrate their main website from SharePoint to Sitefinity
- Sitefinity Consulting,
- Sitefinity Development,
- Sitefinity Go Live Assistance,
- Sitefinity Full Migration,
- Sitefinity Data Migration,
The main website for one of the leading universities was developed using SharePoint, on-premises and was running out of support as Microsoft announced sunset of this particular version of SharePoint a while ago. The project was also a legacy one, serving the university for years. It accumulated a lot of data, multiple content assets, business logic. It is also one of the most visible websites of the university as it was housing the main website of the University where undergrads, students and faculty members will look for information. Additional technological challenges came from the fact the website came in two languages (English and Arabic) and was setup to mirror the content, instead having the content translated. The access to the live instance was also very limited, preventing migration scalability.
Building on top of our migration framework, we were able to make it read SharePoint content. We added a component that allows exporting the data so we can map and migrate it properly. Using additional tool - the tech lead was able to identify all custom functionalities, which were set in JIRA, cast in stone and migrated to Sitefinity ensuring tremendous success and (as stated by key stakeholders) - smoother project execution than initially anticipated.
Initial assessment of Out of the Box functionalities
Together with the stakeholders we did an analysis to see if Sitefinity already offers out of the box solutions that could help execute the project. We quickly came to the conclusion, that the built-in SharePoint connector will not be able to speed us, due to the specifics and the custom data and languages setup as well as some limitations in the module itself.
Assessment and Planning
We assessed the SharePoint site, identified potential challenges, and developed a detailed migration plan. This involved evaluating various components such as images, pages, news, and technology stack. The tech lead of the project went through extensive analysis, identifying key functionalities in the legacy code that need to be migrated.
We led the assessment of integrations that were in Sharepoint (custom ones) into the Sitefinity platform. This included setting up the team, creating high-level specification documentation, and planning the migration process.
Image Import Iteration
We established a structured process for importing images into the new platform. We accumulated issues, worked on solutions, and planned the iterations to ensure all images were successfully migrated.
Production Server Setup
We collaborated with stakeholders to consult on the production server setup. We prepared the necessary packages and conducted consultations with relevant teams, ensuring a seamless transition to the new environment.
Daily Stand Up Meetings
We actively participated in daily stand-up meetings to provide progress updates, report on the next steps, and initiate cross-team activities to maintain a coordinated approach.
Faculty members functionalities enhancements
We addressed issues related to faculty profiles, ensuring consistency of results between the main site and departmental sites.
Main Home Page Changes
We handled urgent changes to the main home page of the SharePoint site, ensuring that critical updates were implemented promptly. Those were past the initial migration and were needed in relation to the new academic year campaign.
Communication and Alignment
We facilitated communication and alignment between teams by actively participating in team stand-up meetings, JIRA discussions, and other communication channels.
Deployment and Testing
We deployed fixes to the test server, assisted with go-live communication, provided guidance, and conducted testing to ensure the stability and functionality of the migrated site. We assisted the testing team with everything we can and also helped set the priorities for each of the findings.
This project showcased our technical leadership and problem-solving abilities as we navigated complex challenges in migrating the SharePoint site to Sitefinity. Our contributions were instrumental in achieving a successful migration, ensuring the site's functionality, and maintaining seamless communication between teams.