Cheri Carver (bCRE) is a Senior Consultant with Omatic. In her past life, Cheri held a number of roles at Blackbaud where she was a Senior Fundraising Systems Consultant and an Educational Consultant for Education Edge, Raiser’s EdgeTM, Crystal Reports and Internet based applications. Today, Cheri specializes in the Grateful Patient product suite including ImportOmatic, List Management, and SegmentOmatic. She also conducts database audits and migrations, Raiser’s Edge consulting, and training services. Let’s catch up with Cheri to learn her best tips and tricks on data migrations.
You’ve conducted quite a few different types of engagements, from database audits to merges and migrations. What is your favorite type of engagement and why?
Migrations are my favorite because they are the most challenging and the most rewarding. Taking two completely separate entities and merging them together to operate as one takes hours of planning, research, and design. Getting to see the end result after all the hard work makes it totally worth it!
What advice can you offer to an organization preparing for a data migration?
Internal communication about the desired end result is key – I can’t stress this enough! Be thorough and ask questions such as:
• How do you want to blend data during the migration?
• Are there any known data issues in the databases in the migration?
• After the migration, how will you work in records that come from multiple entities?
Communication can help avoid a lot of headaches later on. Also, an internal audit of your database prior to the migration can be extremely helpful to avoid any potential issues down the road.
Why should organizations consider auditing their database(s) prior to a data migration?
Database audits give organizations the opportunity to really examine their database, and more importantly, an audit provides a trajectory for improvement. Many times organizations encounter database problems, and they aren’t sure how to tackle them. Worse, many don’t have the time to appropriately deal with these issues. So, issues get swept under the rug. The data issues build up over time, resulting in a dysfunctional database.
A database audit will help develop an action plan to address these burdensome data issues. Think of it like a spring cleaning before moving into a new house. Preventing data issues from compounding will pay off dividends in the long run!
When you aren’t busy helping Omatic clients, what can we find you doing?
Being active with my two Siberian Huskies, Nina and Teddie, going on adventures in Charleston with my husband, meddling in my garden, relaxing on the beach, or whipping up something yummy in the kitchen.
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Omatic Software is dedicated to integrating disparate systems and democratizing data access for today’s nonprofits. Founded in 2002, Omatic has worked with thousands of nonprofits globally to remove their data barriers by integrating systems and enabling nonprofit teams to leverage their donor data rather than be burdened by it. The Omatic team has one goal – unleashing the power of data to show a complete view of your donor, enabling data-driven decision making and opportunity creation for your organization.