dimanche 23 novembre 2008

OSS for companies: How to migrate to FOSS?

II-4 How to migrate to FOSS?

I found the plan of this part on a PDF file I downloaded on the Internet untitled ELAG Workshop #10“Open Source Software: pros and cons” I modified and far developed it.

Before starting companies should have a clear understanding of the reasons to migrate, and a good knowledge on implementation scenarios;

1st Companies should ensure that there is an active support for the change from IT staff and

Do my IT department is competent for the new tasks I am going to give them?
Do they follow me in my strategy?(this is them before all who are going to install and deal with these new technologies)
Do the users(for example clerks in my company) are ready to get over this step?

2nd Companies should ensure that there is a champion for change - the higher up in the organisation the better it is;

Do I have a manager or a high ranked officer able to change it in the best way?

To sum up these two points: the right question is "Do I have the right guys in my company to do this?"

3rd Build up expertise and relationships with the FOSS movement;

By including FOSS your company will start from scratch in this area and have to integrate some rules such as the community.FOSS is a cultural shock.Your company has to understand how does it works.For example in most of the cases this a relation between a human being to a human being and not a vendor to customer.

To sum up this point: you enter in a new field so be as much inform as you can on it and begin to build your own base of knowledge.

4th Start with non critical systems;

This is what we saw in the first part of the report:43% of large companies run between 1 to 9% of their applications under Open Source solutions.These companies are moving step by step and making their own experience on Open Source.

As a principle of prudence large companies wait to have enough experience with Open Source before to integrate them far deeper.

Small companies have less to risk in this integration this is why 24% of them integrate more than 50% of their open source applications.

5th Ensure that each step in the migration is manageable.

This step is proper to any ICT integration your company has to control all the process of the migration.Managers of ICT have to keep the IT governance and understand what is going on in the migration.

6th Monitor user feedback and fix any problems which arise.

This point is linked to a previous one which is to create your own base of knowledge regarding FOSS.This is usefull when your company needs some support.Support being one of the leakest link of the FOSS.

7th Explain the benefits which your organisation will earn after migration.

This point is linked to the justification of the acquisition of ICT.In the case of FOSS the main benefit that we can see and which is easy to justify is the cost.Now where managers or CEO have to be good at is to prove or acquire the right FOSS solutions which can provide the same or a better quality that the previous solution the company used.

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