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The Challenge of ERP Data Migration

What Is Data Migration?

ERP data migration refers to the process of transferring Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software data from one system to another. Transferring data between systems can be challenging, however, and not just because of the technological aspects of the migration process. If you’re transitioning from an old system to a new one, your first task is often to migrate your existing data into it. In order to ensure that your ERP data migration goes smoothly, you need to address major challenges head-on. What exactly does that mean? How do you manage all those changes and make sure they work seamlessly in the long run? 

For many organizations, moving data from their old systems to a new system is one of their biggest worries when implementing enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. In fact, it’s often cited as one of their primary reasons for not even trying to implement an ERP in the first place. It’s important to understand why data migration is so important. What are the concerns and what can be done to ease those fears? 

Below we explore four major challenges associated with data migration and strategies for overcoming them.

Implementation Challenges

Replacing an outdated or inefficient system is not a decision to be taken lightly. At its core, data migration involves integrating new software with existing computer systems and it’s here where project leaders run into some of their biggest challenges when it comes to ERP Implementations.

1. Data repetition and integrity

After migrating data, organizations often find that critical data is repeated within multiple systems. This makes it hard to manage existing information. In addition, migrating a large amount of inaccurate or outdated data can actually damage your organization’s reputation. At a minimum, you should expect to perform clean-up work during your ERP implementation project. But be warned: cleaning up duplicate records is extremely tedious and time-consuming. So it’s wise to get ahead of schedule by conducting thorough research before you begin any migration project.

2. High cost of migrating data

Migrating large volumes of data is a significant undertaking. Many companies underestimate how much time and money it takes to migrate data, causing their projects to run over budget. You can expect to easily spend more than $100,000 on an ERP implementation project, with many projects budgeting well into the six-figure range. Large companies often have more resources available to them and can easily absorb these costs; however, small-to-medium businesses need a reliable system but might not be able to afford one right away.

3. Compliance and Regulatory issues

Many organizations have rules in place that require them to follow specific procedures for storing data. Failure to follow these protocols can result in significant legal and compliance issues. For example, some industries require companies to undergo a strict auditing process to ensure that all sensitive customer information is handled in a secure manner.

4. Resource Allocation

You also need to make sure you have enough resources to complete your project. After all, it takes time and money to bring in consultants or employees to help with migration. It’s easy for small organizations to underestimate how much time and manpower is required to get their systems up and running again after beginning a migration.


Once you begin an ERP data migration, it can seem like an impossible task to complete in one piece. The best way to ensure a successful migration is with a good plan and by enlisting your IT team to help. However, that’s not enough. Despite how much preparation you put into your project, unforeseen complications could arise as you work to move your company’s data from Point A to Point B. Even if you take every precaution possible before initiating your ERP data migration, there will come a time when something goes wrong—and when that happens, it’s important to know what actions to take next. With these four major challenges in mind, you’ll be better prepared for potential problems during your ERP data migration process.

By avoiding these pitfalls or taking them into account early on, you can keep moving forward and make sure your new system works smoothly from day one.

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