Oracle Knowledge to Salesforce: Migration Strategies & Best Practices
Before choosing a CRM to achieve their business goals, businesses consider many factors. Though many CRMs are available in the market, Salesforce and Oracle have been ranking as the top choices for the last few years. Salesforce has been very popular for its rich features and incredible flexibility to integrate with any data sources – either cloud-based or on-premise.
Due to their features and leadership in the market, several companies consider both Oracle and Salesforce before investing in CRM and often choose the amalgamation of both Oracle and Salesforce. No matter what they choose, the data migration from one system to another is always challenging. According to Forbes, only 36% of data migration projects keep to the forecasted budget, and only 46% of projects were delivered on time. The remaining 64% of data migration projects exceed their forecasted budgets and hurt the entire business. Most of the time, the failed data migration project is the ineffective data migration approach and poor implementation.
What’s Oracle Knowledge Management?
Oracle Knowledge Management (KM) is a tool that lets users create, store, and share knowledge. By implementing Oracle Knowledge, users can search for solutions, develop, organize, and access them. Oracle KM produces more closely related results to the issue being researched, thereby increasing customer satisfaction and reducing costs associated with providing service. By managing who can see which information, businesses can better manage the relative confidentiality and visibility of information.
Salesforce is a central customer relationship management (CRM) application used by sales, service, and marketing departments worldwide. With Salesforce CRM, companies can connect better with their customers and partners, track data like customer activity, market to customers, and many other functions.
In addition to being a cloud-based solution, Salesforce also provides numerous software solutions, including a platform for developers to create custom applications. It works as a multi-tenant platform, meaning that multiple customers can use the same technology and run on the latest versions of the application. There’s no need to worry about upgrading infrastructure or applications as they happen automatically. This enables you to focus on innovation rather than technology management.
Method 1: Using Salesforce Bulk APIs
The first option for migrating data from Oracle to Salesforce is bulk API. Using the bulk API makes it easy to upload large amounts of data into Salesforce using a programmatic approach. Users can easily add, edit, and remove records from Oracle by using the Salesforce bulk APIs for Salesforce. The Salesforce bulk APIs follow the SOAP architecture and provides easy data access. Access is required to the Oracle tables, where data is exported into CSV files and imported into Salesforce.
- It supports Parallel processing.
- Requires a minimal amount of client-side code.
- Workflows – Ingest and query workflows can be completed in fewer calls.
- Monitoring Job status is straightforward.
- Failed records are automatically retried.
- Easier to manage batches of data.
- APIs for handling bulk data are not well suited to handling duplicates. Several preprocessing steps will be needed to produce a suitable output.
- Multiple lines of code are required to perform API-based jobs. This is a challenging task for users that require a strong knowledge of API procedures.
- The ETL process usually requires regular processing of tasks as per a specified schedule and data requirements. Users may find this task challenging.
Method 2: Using Oracle Integration Cloud
The Oracle Integration Cloud (OIC) is a cloud-based managed service provided by Oracle that allows data loading from oracle to other destinations. It is a comprehensive, secure, lightweight, integrated solution that enables users to connect applications to the cloud. It functions for both cloud-based applications and applications that run in the data center. This product is a paid license purchased at a high price. Oracle sources can be used as pipelines, and schedules can be set up as recurring tasks.
- Many pre-built technologies and SaaS adapters are available for high productivity, both on-premise through agents and in the cloud with SaaS adapters via a flexible range of interfaces.
- With a visual development environment, you can develop and host business applications.
- Visual, low code process automation increases business agility.
- Requires an expensive license to use the Oracle Integration Cloud.
- We’re transforming data before loading is not flexible.
- Users of Oracle Integration Cloud find it challenging to adjust to the interface due to the steep learning curve.
Method 3: Using Third-Party tools
Third-party integration is precisely what it sounds like: integrating external data into an existing project using application program interfaces (APIs). Using third-party APIs, developers can easily create a new solution in a short time by using already existing components rather than writing code from the start. Although third-party integrations can dramatically boost production, they also have an unforeseen downside. If an app is built using many third-party integrations, this could cause significant problems.
- It allows you to focus on your core product while saving time and money.
- The program can be deployed quickly.
- Better features are possible without restrictions.
- The performance of the pages in different browsers cannot be measured.
- You cannot determine how user-friendly your application is.
Method 4: Manual Data Integration
Manual data integration requires that each business employ a dedicated data engineer who manages and codes data connections on a real-time basis. This means that a reliable data engineer performs data integration manually by usually writing a custom code, connecting the different data sources, collecting, and cleaning the data, etc., without automation.
- May reduce expenditures/cost.
- Provides a strong focus on the core competencies of your business.
- Human error is more likely to occur with manual data integration.
- Manual data integration is slow and inefficient.
Challenges to Migrate Data from Oracle Knowledge to Salesforce
Data migration seems to be a simple process, but that’s not the reality. The entire data migration process is complex, risky, and challenging for IT specialists. Below are some of the common challenges for data migration:
- Improper Analysis & Poor Planning: Every company data structure is unique and requires proper analysis and planning before migrating the data from one system to another. This is one of the crucial steps that need to be done correctly for a successful migration.
- Inaccurate Data Backup: There’s a high possibility that the data might have multiple versions and more than one file. Data duplication needs to be removed and organized well before implementing the data migration.
- Loss of Data: There are high chances of losing data while migrating data from one system to another, which can severely cost the businesses.
- Lack of Technical Skills: One of the biggest reasons for the mostly failed migration projects is the lack of technical skills. Errors caused by the Inefficient technical skills might result in higher-than-expected expenditures. Strong technical skills are highly required in data migration for a successful project.
- Data Incompatibility: Multiple challenges can be faced regarding data compatibilities, such as different structuring strategies used by other tools, data formats, their conversion during migration, and the overall architecture between the two systems.
- Limitations: During migration analysis, customers may experience certain product limitations such as data extraction limits, encryption/decryption patterns, file size, category limits, or field length mismatch in both source (Oracle) and target (Salesforce) applications. It is important to consider product limitations during analysis time and apply appropriate workarounds and innovative solution design.
Data Migration Steps
Data migration consists of two steps:
1. Oracle Service Cloud (OSvC) Knowledge Advance Data Export: In the data export process, the Oracle Service Cloud Knowledge data will be extracted using OSvC Rest API to export data into the Salesforce Knowledge base. Oracle Knowledge database will be exported into two categories:
- Master Data Export: In master data export, all the transactional and analytical data, such as products and categories, will be exported. Apply language translations for master categories and products.
- Article Data Export: All the article content will be exported in the article data export.
- Attachment Data Export: In attachment data export, all the contents having to attach a link in form or resource URL will be exported and upload extracted files to the hosted site and generated URL.
2. Salesforce Knowledge Management Data Import: In the data import process, OSvC data will be imported from the external file to the Salesforce Knowledge base.
Our Recommended Data Migration Approach
Data migration requires a well-planned strategy and approach for a successful data migration project. Our data migration approach consists of 5 phases that align with business goals to ensure success.
- Phase 1 – Data Analysis: This is the first step toward data migration. The existing data will be analyzed to understand the existing state of data structure, like the current format and source of the data. Further, it’ll help understand the current pain points while authoring or rendering the data so that those points can be resolved in the new system. Analyzing the data helps find the possible issues that may arise and prevent them during the data migration.
- Phase 2 – Data Extraction Setup: In this second step, the data will be extracted based on the folder structure using the REST API, where the master data (Product and Categories) will be removed in XML format and article data (article content) in JSON format including the data translation in required supporting languages like Italian, German, etc.
- Phase 3 – Data Mapping: During this process, the data fields from several datasets will be aligned into a schema or single database. This will match the data fields with the new system. This process will facilitate the formation of relationships and data interoperability in various formats.
- Phase 4 – Data Import: Once the mapping is done, the following process will be importing data in sequence order. First, the master data will be imported in an XML file using the metadata import solution available in SFDC. The same key will translate the data into other SFDC-supported languages. For article data, the data will be imported in JSON format. Once the information is successfully imported, the reports will be generated for the data correction in the OSvC system.
- Phase 5 – Data Validation: Once the data is successfully imported to the salesforce knowledge base, it’s essential to ensure that the migrated data is free from errors and clean. The data will be validated in phases, and the issues will be fixed if found. This data validation process ensures the quality of the migrated data between the two systems. It’s the final step to validate that data migration between the two systems has been done successfully and will work as per the desired results. The best approach to set the benchmark in the source system in terms of approximate article count, user security and visibility matrix, master data category, performance metrics, and YOY projections to conclude successful validation.
Benefits After Migration
Once the data migration is done successfully, there are several benefits that you will reap with Salesforce Article base like:
- Quick Access to Information: You can make your article database which will be vital and helpful for your users. This will be time-savings for them and your agents by having quick access to the information.
- Increased Productivity: The agents’ productivity will improve as they’ll be able to access the information quickly to find the correct answer for the user’s queries.
- Self-service functionality enables your users to access valuable information relating to your products and services easily.
- Efficient Knowledge Management: The KCS v5 verified knowledge management solution and incident management module of Salesforce Knowledge ensures that all your articles’ content is accurate and enables you to implement the best practices.
- Complete Control and Customization of Knowledge Base: With this functionality, you can configure custom reviews, publications, translation approval, and the approval process for every type of content.
Data migration is a value-driven process and should be given the proper respect and focus during any digital transformation. Take extreme care and caution before you start by creating a good data migration plan, using the right tools and technologies, and ensuring that the data is safe, secure, and clean after the migration. Data is your biggest asset; treating it right with utmost care will help you and your business.
This post was written by Nixon James, Director of Salesforce Practice at SoftClouds. Nixon has two decades of experience in innovating, designing, building, and delivering world-class CRM/CX/ DevOps/AI solutions around the globe to meet our clients’ digital transformational needs. Nixon is passionate about our clients’ goals and committed to making their vision a reality and client success his number one priority.
SoftClouds is a recognized leader in CRM/CX transformation with experience in numerous Service Cloud Implementations with pre-configured best practice business processes for multiple verticals/domains.