Grant Management Solutions Toolkit: Preparing for Data Migration
By Jillian Neimeister on October 6, 2021
When you move one set of data from one system to another you are migrating data. The initial system that your data resides in can take many forms, including spreadsheets, and you may be taking this project on for several reasons. Whether your organization is upgrading your grants management software or moving paper-based data into a system for the first time, there are some common activities you should perform to prepare your data.
Your data will need to be transformed and organized to be moved into the new system. This is an enormous undertaking, and there are some steps you can take before your data migration officially begins to make the process smoother. If you are planning on migrating legacy data into AmpliFund, we have some tips to get your started.
Understand Your Aims
The first thing you must know for migration purposes is what data you are planning to migrate, and why. This can help you determine the structure your data migration project will take. You should have a solid understanding of the migration method your organization will employ, the timeline the project needs to adhere to, and the tools and resources you will have available to you.
Scope the Data to be Migrated
Determine how many years of records you want to migrate into your new grants management software. To stay compliant, the Uniform Grant Guidance (UGG) requires three years of financial records but keeping seven years of records for auditing purposes is a best practice.
Clean Your Data
Go through your existing data with a critical eye to look for typos, redundant naming conventions, duplicated data, missing data, etc. If your data is incorrect or inconsistent, you will introduce the risk of project delays. If there are missing data elements in records, make sure you fill them in to ensure their accuracy.
Define Data Points
Define where the data is going to live in the new grants management system by finding a field to tie to each data point. In AmpliFund, we call this process "mapping," where all the data to be migrated is matched to an object and a field in the system. Some examples of objects and fields are:
- Budget categories
- Benefit types
- GL accounts
- HR actuals
The GREAT Act requires specific data standards for reporting. The data standards established by the GREAT Act must include, at a minimum, standard definitions for the data elements required for managing Federal awards, unique identifiers for both the award and the recipient that can be applied consistently across the Federal government, and they must be machine-readable. One place you can go to find objects, fields, and workflows that are utilized in grants management processes for mapping purposes is the Federally Integrated Business Framework (FIBF) data standards.
The FIBF created use cases and business processes that are required to manage grants, and from these use cases, they have created a list of about 400 data elements that are relevant to the grant process and defined them. There is a possibility that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) could adopt these data standards for UGG compliance as well in the future.
Another option available to AmpliFund clients is to bring data over to the system as-is into reporting tables. Your data will not appear on the user interface using this method but can still be reported on. With this method, your data does not have to map perfectly to the fields available in AmpliFund, but you can use custom forms and fields for reporting later.
Record Your Data in an Import Template
Put your data into an AmpliFund Import Template if you are an AmpliFund client. AmpliFund provides a Support Portal where we provide templates for clients to ensure their data is migrated efficiently. Additionally, we provide access to “How to Import” videos, as well as our Customer Support Team who can provide assistance.
Data migration is complex, and it will most likely take more time than you imagine to accomplish. Choosing the right partner can go a long way. If you have questions, do not hesitate to reach out for help.