Migration 2.0: first feedback


Hackathon 2017 – Synolia won the award “best migration ever” on Akeneo PIM 2.0.

We launched Akeneo PIM 2.0, our major new release, in early October. In addition to many new features, this release included a significant re-platforming of our technical stack. The 2017 roadmap of Akeneo PIM is already behind us, and a major part of the R&D team is now focused on future releases. However, now it’s your turn! You! Our fabulous community, developers, solution partners and of course customers: to migrate from Akeneo PIM 1.7 to 2.0. And of course, we understand some of you are still waiting for the painting to be dryer before migrating!

But you are not alone! – and we are here to help. We focused on making the migration to Akeneo 2.0 easy. That’s why we have provided a migration kit to assist you in making this a simple and easy task 🙂 We promise!

To better understand the composition of the migration kit and how to use it, please read this blog post Migrating to Akeneo 2.0: transition simplified.

But seriously, it might not be as comforting for us to say, “Hey! We provided a new migration kit, and now it’s your turn!”

That’s why we challenged three of our solution-partners, asking them to hack our migration process.

The pitch of this Hackathon 2017

Three teams of two developers each: Smile, Synolia, Flagbit locked-in a room at our headquarters for one entire week (three and half days of work actually) with the objective to migrate at least one Akeneo 1.7 project to 2.0. For this contest, they received assistance from five Akeneo core developers responsible for fixing bugs raised-up during this Hackathon and enriching the migration kit with more scenarios to handle.

Flagbit team working on the migration 2.0

I had the opportunity to meet each team and to capture their feedback during this week.

Here is what they had to say!

  • Q. How familiar are you with the Hackathon format?

Synolia: It’s kinda new. It’s an enjoyable atmosphere. Sharing directly with core developers is an excellent opportunity to have an engaged and a sincere discussion, and to more rapidly adopt this new version of Akeneo PIM that handles so many changes.

Smile & Flagbit: We never participated in such an event.

  • Q. What did you expect before joining the Hackathon?

Synolia: We tried to estimate the complexity (and the cost) of a migration based on the two projects we brought. The first one we believed to be quite simple and very close to the standard expectation. However, on the second we think it is more tricky because it has a significant data volume and a lot of custom code that will modify the structure of the catalog itself.

Flagbit: My wife was expecting me to have a fun, sightseeing trip to Nantes. But instead we were very serious with work, we came in early every morning and left around 11 pm each evening. On a serious note, we committed to the Hackathon so that we could understand the value of Akeneo PIM 2.0 and can translate and support our end users.

  • Q. How familiar were you with the Akeneo migration process?

Synolia: We had several experiences in the past: Beta to 1.0, 1.5 to 1.6, 1.6. to 1.7, 1.4 to 1.7.

Smile: We already have performed migrations from 1.3 to 1.7, 1.3 to 1.6, but Akeneo introduced a new migration toolkit, so the migration 2.0 is something very new, and that we are excited about.

Flagbit: It is our first migration.

  • Q. Can you give us a tip? Or a best practice?

Smile: You need to have an obvious understanding of the structure of your catalog.
The new model offers more flexibility. Think about the opportunity to restructure your catalog before starting your migration, and remove any useless custom code.

Flagit: A clear understanding of your catalog structure is a must-have. This will help with onboarding end users in your migration strategy and can help developers be more efficient.

  • Q. What is your feeling after one week in our office?

Synolia: We are looking forward to the release 3.0 to come back at the Akeneo Headquarter 🙂 It is a great initiative. I really liked challenging Product Core Developers with very concrete use cases and business requirements that are sometimes hard to transmit through a ticketing engine.

Smile: It’s a complete change of mindset. We are used to adapting our catalog structure to the back-office of our eCommerce platform, by applying some nasty tricks. The modeling in 2.0 is much more aligned to what our clients need, more simple and more flexible.

The modeling in 2.0 is much more aligned to what our clients need, more simple and more flexible

Breakfast at the “Chaquip”, sharing tactical information

  • Q. How significant was the effort to migrate your projects?

Synolia: we migrated two projects in less than 3.5 days: data + settings + custom code.
We estimate the length to migrate a simple project is 5% of migration and 95% of tests, so the majority of the migration process is testing. We spent a lot of time learning how to do this. But if we needed to do this again tomorrow, honestly it would take us about two hours for the smaller project, and three days for the bigger one thanks to the migration toolkit Akeneo provided.

Smile: Imports/Exports do not require updates. And typically this is the most challenging part of an Akeneo PIM project. Even custom code is quite easy to migrate, and with the migration toolkit, we have the feeling that the migration from 1.7 to 2.0 is much easier than the migration from 1.6 to 1.7.

Flagbit: In two days, we migrated all our settings, all the product data and two-thirds of our “in-house” custom bundles. For the rest of the week, we are focused on the last custom bundle that carries most of the essential complexity.

We migrated two projects in less than 3.5 days: data + settings + custom code.

Final Round: Smile pitching his project

  • Q. What are you going to tell to your boss when you are back in the office?

Synolia: We can start migrating our clients immediately.

Smile: He can feel more relaxed and confident with managing a migration to 2.0. This is easy and not much to do.

Flagbit: The new product variation model fits very well with our organization, and it will allow us to remove some custom code. I think he will be very happy to hear this!

We can start migrating our clients immediately.

Hackathon 2017 – final round: teams pitching on their projects in front of a jury composed of Akeneo employees.

  • Q. One last word… ?

Synolia: If you still don’t have Akeneo PIM, it’s time! If you are afraid of migrating, just do a short test, and you’ll see that everything will go smoothly!

Smile: I think end users will really appreciate the new user experience; I already know they are looking forward to getting it.

Flagbit: Akeneo PIM 2.0 seems very fast, the UI is nice, friendly, and easy to use. The primary goal is to provide the best tool for our product managers because they have to work all the day long with it. I think we will save much time and they will love it!

Want to learn more about Akeneo PIM? Ready to migrate on Akeneo PIM 2.0?

Take a look at some of our blog posts or contact us to be put in touch with a sales representative and our professional services.

Read also...

Migrating to Akeneo 2.0: Transition Simplified

Migrating to new software can be a major headache for organizations. To avoid this problem, Akeneo created specific tools for our customers and partners to assure a smooth migration. We focused on making the Migrating to Akeneo 2.0 easy! We promise. ☺ We understand that businesses may be cautious in migrating from Akeneo PIM 1.7…

Read more