Many organizations are considering an update to their existing SharePoint environment in 2016. This is largely due to new functionalities being offered with SharePoint 2016, especially if the organization is still running SharePoint 2010 or later. With that said, a well thought out migration strategy is key to the success of this project.

Let’s consider five things organizations can do to prepare for a SharePoint 2016 migration.

Perform a Content Audit

The main purpose of a content audit is to identify any outdated or unimportant content to leave behind when moving to the new environment. By doing this, organizations will be sure to only migrate the content that is most important.

Consider Existing Security Permissions

Organizations most likely have a well thought out layer of security permissions already integrated into its existing SharePoint environment. So, it’s crucial that the same level of security and access groups migrate over to the new environment. An automated migration approach will, more often than not, respect existing security permissions. Conversely, a more manual approach will require much more attention to be sure the same level of security is met. In addition, this may be a good time for the organization to revisit existing permissions and amend them as necessary.

Hardware and System Requirements

Creating a fresh SharePoint 2016 farm may require that the organization update its hardware and system requirements. The official hardware requirements can be found under “System Requirements” on Microsoft TechNet.

Must Have SharePoint 2013

It’s not possible to upgrade from SharePoint 2010 directly to SharePoint 2016. Organizations must upgrade to SharePoint 2013 first. After upgrading to 2013, organization could either use one of the many migration tools on the market or perform the upgrade themselves. That decision will depend largely on existing knowledge resources and budget requirements. 

Hybrid Cloud Option

In order to take advantage of the new cloud features in 2016, such as OneDrive for Business, organizations will need to really understand what information (if any) can’t be moved to the cloud. That answer will largely depend on the legal and audit requirements in the organizations jurisdiction.

As discussed, there are many things organizations can do today in preparation for a migration to SharePoint 2016. Organizations that plan ahead now, surely will avoid much heartache down the road as well as set themselves up for a successful migration experience.