5 Steps to Migrate Legacy Data into Salesforce Health Cloud

By Methodiq Team

Many laboratories have set the modernization of their systems as part of their IT roadmap to reduce the Total Cost of Ownership by leveraging a highly available cloud-based solution. The preferred CRM choice has been Salesforce Health Cloud.

During the Salesforce adoption process, one of the most critical tasks is migrating data from the legacy system. This allows end-users, especially the sales team, to continue working on their leads, accounts, and contacts, and focusing on generating more revenue for their business.

Here are 5 steps you need to know to make your data migration a success:

1. Understand your data

The first step is to understand your legacy system's data structure and how it is being used. This will help you determine what needs to be migrated and how it can best be mapped to Salesforce.

Here are some important items to consider in this step:

  • Prioritize entities with a large volume of records and/or recent updates, e.g., Accounts, Contacts, Leads, Opportunities, Notes, Tasks, and Cases
  • Assess the need to migrate non-key entities or those with a lower volume of records and/or old updates, e.g., Closed Tasks, Lost Opportunities, Accounts Out of Business, etc.
  • Map unique record identifiers, to be able to continue a numbering sequence
  • Map picklist values, to keep data consistent in Salesforce
  • Export your legacy system's data to CSV (comma-separated value) files, so it is easy to map to Salesforce's native CSV files

5 Steps to Migrate Legacy Data into Salesforce Health Cloud - Image 1

Once you understand your data, you can start planning your migration. This includes deciding which data to migrate when to migrate it, and how to map it to Salesforce.

Beware that hand-picking the data drastically reduces migration and validation time and effort.




2. Map and prepare your data in Salesforce

In this step you need to create a field mapping document that maps the legacy entities and fields to the respective Salesforce objects and fields.

During the mapping, consider the following:

  • Try and use Salesforce standard objects and fields as much as possible
  • Enable State and Country/Territory picklists in Salesforce to standardize and use ISO state/country codes
  • Whenever possible, create picklist values in Salesforce to standardize data, such as Status, Type, Salutation, etc.
  • Use Salesforce field formulas to concatenate/derive data, instead of inserting plain text into Salesforce, so your CSV file is cleaner and easier to manage
  • Create a Salesforce Sandbox environment to evaluate the data migration prior to loading into Production

3. Execute your migration

Now it is time to migrate your data. This involves exporting your data from the legacy system and importing it into Salesforce.

The typical steps during this process are:

  1. Export CSV files from legacy system
  2. Export CSV templates from Salesforce
  3. Copy data from the source CSV file into the corresponding CSV template, using a CSV editor, such as Microsoft Excel
  4. Adjust data in the CSV template, such as performing ID lookup, removing special characters, using state/country ISO codes, adjusting date/time fields format, and removing null values
  5. Insert the data using Salesforce Data Loader, observing the right order
    1. Typically, you will use the following order: Users, Accounts, Contacts, remaining objects

5 Steps to Migrate Legacy Data into Salesforce Health Cloud - Image 2As a best practice, start your migration in a Sandbox environment, utilizing a subset of the full data. This allows you to quickly identify inconsistencies and bulk-fix the CSV data.

Upon every data load execution, Salesforce will generate a success and an error CSV output files. Avoid the temptation of only fixing the issues in the error file and loading them again. You will have cleaner data if you first delete the successful records, fix the failed records, and load them all as single batch again.

After a few attempts, you will be ready to validate the sample data in your Sandbox environment.

4. Validate your data

After your data has been migrated, it is important to validate it to ensure that everything was migrated correctly. This includes running tests and comparing data in Salesforce to data in your legacy system.

You should progressively migrate the remaining subset of data from your legacy system into Salesforce and validate/fix it until all records have been successfully migrated.

Be sure to keep a copy of the latest successful CSV output files, as at the end of the above process, they will be the baseline for your production data migration.

5. Go-live

Once your data has been migrated and validated, you are ready to go live with Salesforce. This is the last step in your data migration journey.5 Steps to Migrate Legacy Data into Salesforce Health Cloud - Image 3

There are a few things to consider planning for your go-live:

  • Define a cutoff date in your legacy system. Then export the last CSV files out of it and perform the above steps in your Salesforce Sandbox environment one last time
  • Schedule your data migration window. Depending on the volume of records to be migrated, this period could range from a few minutes to several hours
  • Back up your Production data. Salesforce has native features and Partner apps that help with this process. After all, it is important to have a rollback plan.
  • Be prepared to face issues. Although you might have practiced the migration several times in your Sandbox environment, you may be challenged with minor differences across environments, which may cause inconsistencies and require on-the-fly fixes

Final Thoughts

Data migration can be a daunting task, but it does not have to be. By following these 5 steps, you can successfully migrate your legacy system data to Salesforce quickly and effectively.

Ready to get started with Salesforce Health Cloud?

Migrating legacy data into Salesforce isn't as easy as we make it seem.  If you need to tackle a migration or have questions about where to get started, get in touch with our team.