The first step in transitioning from a legacy system to Slate is to do an audit of current data and process needs. Once there is an understanding of the fundamental needs of the office, an institution can begin to create these processes and bring data into Slate. When sharing a database, keep in mind that a number of data point destinations and objects have already been created by the admissions office. It will be important to collaborate with these stakeholders to avoid duplicating objects in Slate, or decide to utilize objects that have already been created.
Asking the Right Questions
When auditing, ask your key stakeholders the following questions about stored data points:
- Is this data point accurate?
- Where is the data point created (SIS, LMS, etc)?
- Is this data point necessary for us to do our job?
- Who uses this piece of information? In what capacity?
- Is this value something that can change? Or is it purely historical?
Knowing the purpose of a process will assist in building objects in Slate that accomplish the desired goal. Additional questions to ask are as follows:
- Why do we collect information in this manner?
- What are we looking to accomplish with this form/event/report?
- In an ideal world, how do our current students interact with us?
- What do we care about—and what is ultimately necessary for us to address those desires?
Translating Legacy Elements to the Language of Slate
Once the audit is complete, each institution should list of the various elements they wish to capture within Slate. Having a conversation with a Technolutions Client Support Engineer at this point will be advantageous and allow for discussion as to what the equivalent element within Slate will be.
Depending on their intended use, these elements may be a single value field, multi-value field, interaction, entity field, or standard field. A Slate specialist will be able to provide guidance based on each school's unique needs as to the optimal method of storing both legacy information and the future implications of collecting new data.
Once the translations of legacy data points and processes have been established, institutions can start the process of building the system elements required to house the information—the first step in preparing the database to receive imports of legacy data.