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Find this Podcast “Taking a Holistic View of FastTrack for SharePoint” on the ThreeWill Soundcloud, Stitcher, and iTunes.


Danny Ryan:Hello, and welcome to the ThreeWill podcast.


This is your host Danny Ryan speaking, and I have Tommy Ryan here with me. How’s it going, Tommy?


Tommy Ryan:It’s going well.


Danny Ryan:Yeah? You having a good week?


Tommy Ryan:It’s a busy week. A lot of on-the-road traveling within Atlanta, not outside of Georgia. It’s been a busy week.


Danny Ryan:Yeah, traffic was crazy yesterday. Wasn’t it? With the rain … It was yesterday or the day before.


Tommy Ryan:It was yesterday.


I was actually at a client location and we had to go to the basement, or the hallway in the middle of the building because of the tornado warning at two o’clock yesterday.


Danny Ryan:Let me see your socks. There you go.


Tommy Ryan:Here you go.


Danny Ryan:See, I’m getting a little crazier than you here.


Nice, blue. Some shades of blue and gray.


Tommy Ryan:Yeah, I like it.


Danny Ryan:Yeah, thank you. A little florescence again with me. Branching out a little bit.


Today what we wanted to talk about was taking a more holistic approach to FastTrack for SharePoint. I’m not going to say high level, I’m not going to say it.


Start us off with just, what is FastTrack for SharePoint and why are people looking at this now?


Tommy Ryan:FastTrack for SharePoint is a program to get people into Microsoft 365 and it’s been around for migrating mailboxes into Microsoft 365.


Just recently at the Ignite conference, they announced people being able to use Fast Track to move share point content to the cloud.


Danny Ryan:Microsoft is going to help with doing the migration and, of course this is going to be for free, right?


Tommy Ryan:It is, it is. There’s maybe a couple caveats to that.


Danny Ryan:What’s the catch? It’s a good hook, free is always good, but … Give me some of the, “yeah it’s free, but”.


Tommy Ryan:I think Microsoft definitely wants to see continual adoption in the cloud. If people are getting their mailboxes up there, it’s going to be a richer experience if they get their share point content up there.


It’s a suite of applications that a lot of the services are giving you that ability to roll up different areas of Microsoft 365 and a more comprehensive view.


We were talking about teams last week. If I use teams, I would like to have my file content available to me and my team. If you have that on prem, that might be a challenge. It might not be feasible to use a tool like that.


I think it’s to the cloud and supporting that, so they’re anteing up by giving people the ability to cut down on the costs. When it’s free, I wouldn’t say it’s free … We can talk more about that. At the end of the day, it’s moving simplified content.


Whatever you have that’s “customized” or a little bit different than the standard flow of the migration process, you’re going to have to handle that out of band of that Fast Track migration.


Danny Ryan:So it’s moving file content over primarily? Is that what we’re looking at?


Tommy Ryan:Yeah. When they go through what’s included, they talk about what’s included at a site level, a list level, and an item level.


When they talk about sites, they say, we’re moving over the title, the logo, the theme … If it’s an out of the box theme. The standard navigation, your content types, site columns, pages, a limited member of web parts, permissions in sharing.


Some of the information that’s very basic, share point out of the box, that’s coming over with sites. Then list, it’s documents and items and views and content types and manage metadata. Then down at the item level, things like versions, up to five versions, and the permissions down to the item level.


Really good basic, if you set up share point and you did a basic team site and you ended up adding a couple items in a calendar and created some document structure and you really didn’t go further than that, then you’re going to be able to move a lot of that content over for free.


Danny Ryan:That’s great. There’s probably caps on the amount of content that Microsoft’s going to move over?


Tommy Ryan:Yeah, they cap it at 10 terabytes total. You get a half a gig per user. If you’re in the 10s of thousands of users, you’re starting to get into the terabytes of data.


Danny Ryan:Nice. Where do we fit into this? What do you see as the need occurring because of this? I look at this and say, okay this will get you part of the way there and could introduce some more pains involved with having your data … Having things in two different places.


What are you seeing … What’s the need that’s coming about because of this program?


Tommy Ryan:I think it’s that challenge that you face when you go into a migration and you start migrating and you get some of the content over into the newer version of share point, but you don’t quite get to the finish line and you have stuff left behind in your existing form.


That creates a disjointed experience for the user. It’s even worse when you’re talking about Microsoft 365 where you don’t want to have just a couple of your sites over there and then people having to go to totally different locations and have a totally different user experience as they get content from on prem and in the cloud.


There’s going to be situations where people will leave stuff behind on purpose. It might be full trust code, and they don’t want to put the effort into porting that into a cloud-based model for the app that they built.


Some of those things will purposely be left behind, but you want to get as much of that content over. Also, at the end of the day, the remediation that will need to take place is not “covered” as part of this program. The remediation is up to the end user.


There is an assessment that will give you a sense of what that will be, but you’ve got to have a plan to address that so when that content gets over, you’re addressing things like running work flows, you’re addressing things like did I use custom list forms, did I have [infopath 00:07:30] forms.


It’s great if you move all the data over there, but if your user interface was in infopath form, you’re going to be in a bad place. You’re going to have to think about, well what do I do now that those infopath forms didn’t come over. Do I need some help with someone getting them over or do I need to go and create some light weight UI on top of those lists and share points?


Danny Ryan:Remediation is going and trouble shooting when there is issues? Or is it checking to see that all the content moved over? Is it a combination of those two?


Tommy Ryan:From my understanding, it’s things that have failed in the process of coming over. There’s going to be logs … At the end of the day, the customer is going to have to go through and figure out how do I handle something that didn’t migrate over 100 percent.


Danny Ryan:Okay, great.


What else would you have to share with somebody who’s trying to fill out what needs to occur when you’re using Fast Track?


Tommy Ryan:I think we’ve talked about migration in the past. One of the things that’s a key thing to think about and plan for and implement is a communication plan.


All the communication that occur when you’re moving someone’s cheese … I think that’s something that … Microsoft will give you some guidance on that, but it really is going to be up to the customer to make sure that there’s a solid communication plan, and just coordination around who gets involved when so you can have a successful migration.


What are site owners doing? What are their responsibilities pre and post-migration? How do they help with the remediation, making sure that people know when this is occurring and have a sense of what is their backup plan during that time of migration? How do they keep continuity of service of the sites that they use and share point?


Understanding which sites are mission critical. You have, maybe some white glove-type service around those sites so you’re not interrupting what’s making money for your company.


Danny Ryan:This Fast Track for share point is a limited time offer from Microsoft as well, correct?


Tommy Ryan:It is. It’s pretty fast timeline, maybe that’s why I call it Fast Track. Get on the track quickly, it’s going fast.


Danny Ryan:The train’s leaving.


Tommy Ryan:It’s actually ending the end of March, so you have to get started by then. For folks who are thinking about taking advantage of this, it’s something that you want to start getting in motion today.


Danny Ryan:I guess we work alongside with the Microsoft teams. They would contact Microsoft, and then we would be basically another third party that’s involved with this just to make sure that the overall effort is a success.


Tommy Ryan:Right, yeah. We get the account team involved and make sure they can get down the process to qualify and get on the list to be Fast Tracked.


Danny Ryan:I imagine this is for more complex environments and larger organizations are probably the people who would want to have this type of service?


Tommy Ryan:I think it’s a variety. I think you might find people, if they have a very simple environment, Fast Track is going to have a higher coverage of that migration.


The one’s that have more complicated environments … Yes, it’s important to probably put more effort into planning around it, for the more complex environments because of the nature of larger organizations that depend on certain functions within share point that you’re not interrupting their services.


If it’s a complicated environment, that migration time line might be extended with remediation and all the things you need to do to be successful with it.


I think both can take advantage of it, it’s just a matter of how much help you need along the way. The more complex it is, the more planning and assessment and implementation services you need to augment that Fast Track effort.


Danny Ryan:One of the things I like about helping folks out with migrations is it’s typically a one-time thing, and why go spend all the time trying to learn about migrations when you’re just doing it once?


It’s good for you to engage an outside organization to help you with it, because they’ve seen other environments, they’ve done it before … Why spend so much time learning lessons how to migrate when you’re just going to do it once.


Tommy Ryan:Right, yeah. I wish the program was around longer because we’re ramping up on this and we have a few customers that are down the path with this Fast Track program. We’re kind of having this podcast now to let people know that it’s out there and kind of that awareness.


We’re getting the experience around how they get the most out of a Fast Track offering.


Danny Ryan:I’m sure if it’s successful … I can not say successful this morning … If it’s a successful program, Microsoft may look at extending it, and that could always happen.


Tommy Ryan:Sure, right. There’s nothing like a sense of urgency though, so that’s probably a good plan to say it’s going away soon so jump on board.


Danny Ryan:It’s a good tactic, yes. Absolutely.


Thank you, Tommy, for taking the time to do this. I know you’re really busy and I appreciate you sharing some of the things that you’ve learned recently.


If you are one of those customers whose engaging Microsoft for Fast Track and you want someone else to help you more with a comprehensive plan and really reduce a lot of the risk involved with these project, please reach out to us.


Come to Click on contact us, and we’d love to talk to you more about helping out with this particular type of project.


Thank you so much for listening and have a wonderful day. Bye.


Tommy Ryan:Bye.



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