Project Server Migration Checklist: Lessons Learned from Recent Migrations

Migration of PPM data to Project Online is an important step for an organization in the evolution of PPM/PMO capability. Microsoft Project Online allows for greater accessibility, which increases collaboration and leverages the capabilities of Microsoft Office 365 together with Project Online. Essentially, this is a digital transformation step for the PMO.


However, migration is a critical step that needs to be done correctly. Migration from Microsoft Project Server 2010/2013 to Project Online is complex, as it requires, first of all, developing a migration strategy to ensure overall data integrity. Because of a large number of different factors and moving variables, what we have found is that developing a good migration strategy ensures data integrity and sets expectations accurately within your customer or user PMO.


Below is the ultimate list of 10 key factors you should consider in order to migrate to Project Online successfully.

1. Set clear expectations with your business customer.
We’ve observed that there’s a tendency on the part of IT specialists to underestimate the time required and to over-promise in terms of their ability to quickly deliver a migration to Project Online. The reality is that there’s a lot of assessment, planning, and tests to go through before you can actually commit to a delivery date for a completed Project Online migration.

2. Assess and estimate the data to be migrated.
The more detailed the assessment you can do, the better the estimate you will have for the time required for a migration and the better the test migration you’re going to achieve.

3. Understand the technical limits of Project Online as they relate to your migration.
This has to do with the concept of “throttling” within Project Online – how much data can be uploaded at once. In addition, there are some technical limits with regards to what can be actually migrated. There may be some customizations in your Project Server and other items that can’t be migrated to Project Online “as-is.” Identify them up front and see how to manage those exceptions.

4. Develop a sure Project Online migration strategy.
We suggest that the strategy should include the following steps:

  • Identify components for migration;
  • Decide if data will be migrated to a clean or pre-configured environment;
  • Prioritize what needs to be migrated and what can be left in the older system;
  • Identify what is not supported in Project Online and develop a mitigation plan for this data; and
  • Identify post-migration tasks.

5. Create a detailed Project Online migration project schedule.
The key factors that typically affect migration speed are the amount and quality of data.

6. Prepare the migration environment (source and target) as well as Project Online PWAs for migration.

7. Perform a test migration on a small dataset. Get familiar with the tools and environment.

8. Perform a test migration.
Here, you’re going to go through all the steps of the migration strategy and identify all the issues that your data and source system are going to have as well as find out the ability of your tenant to correctly process everything that you are going to put in the upload.

9. Perform the production migration.
After you’ve gone through the test migration and figured out how to overcome the challenges that came up, you are ready to move on to the actual production migration.

10. Complete the post-migration validation tasks.
The best way to do this is through the reporting of your source data against the target data in the environments.


Migrating to Project Online allows for greater accessibility, and thus increases collaboration and leverages the capabilities of Microsoft Office 365 together with Project Online. Take the time to do it right by following the best practices described above or send us a request to do it for you. At FluentPro, we offer our customers Migration to Project Online services where we do all the migration work along with consulting and implementation.


If you have any questions, please leave your comments below. For more details or a demo, please contact FluentPro sales team.