August 12, 2021

Use Case
5 min

Efficiently Integrate IT Environments for a Success M&A Process

Taking the right approach to combining IT environments in the merger and acquisition process is critical for ensuring an efficient company transition.

What's Inside

When it comes to a successful M&A, ensuring that the source and target companies’ IT environments are properly integrated becomes critical. In order to avoid common technology pitfalls as a result of the M&A process, organizations should be mindful of how to proactively address these challenges. CDW expert Tim DeVries shared his advice on how to plan for a successful IT merger that empowers end users to keep working efficiently and will ensure the best possible business outcomes.

Read more about common challenges when it comes to integrating IT environments in an M&A.  

Overcome Authentication Hurdles When Combining IT Environments

While an M&A is in process, it’s important to ensure that end users from the source and target companies have access to technology resources on both sides. DeVries shared that managing authentication hurdles is one of the biggest challenges when integrating IT environments. Ensuring that employees on both sides have access to the proper technology channels and resolving that authentication problems should be one of the first steps when combining IT systems.

Companies should be proactive in establishing a plan to grant authentication access to employees on both sides of an M&A. This is not only important for productivity but also for ensuring the IT environment remains secure. If employees are given authentication information piecemeal, they may just write down the passwords and Post-Its and stick it on their monitors. This makes for inefficient record keeping and also makes it harder for IT staff to track progress in the merging of environments.

Having a proactive approach to overcoming authentication hurdles makes it easier to bring disparate IT environments together. Let’s take the example of two healthcare organizations that CDW helped through the M&A process. Each organization had about 40,000 users, meaning that the integrated IT environment needed to accommodate more than 80,000 end users. These organizations wanted to establish a common identity between them so they could share resources on email, word documents, spreadsheets, and instant messaging. At the same time, they wanted to maintain separate active directories and applications unique to each organization. Thus, CDW helped these customers navigate a hybrid environment in which they could share cloud resources while maintaining separate server applications.

With help from CDW’s engineering team, these healthcare organizations were able to arrive at a solution that gave end users access to all the resources they needed across both IT environments. In fact, the migration was so successful that CDW later helped the target customer when they acquired another hospital and needed to bring that IT environment under the same umbrella. 

Account for Overwhelmed IT Staff by Bringing in Additional Support

Data migration between companies in the process of an M&A can only happen efficiently if enough IT support staff are available to help end users. As DeVries explains, migrations can only happen at the speed of the help desk support system. Companies need to carefully plan to ensure that enough IT support is available to keep pace with data migration. Otherwise, organizations run the risk of having migration timelines pushed back, confused end users, and a disorganization migration. Migrations can only occur at the speed of a company’s IT help desk.

For companies looking to ensure an efficient M&A process, planning for enough IT resources to keep pace is necessary. If IT support staff from both the source and target companies are not enough combined, organizations should consider third-party help to meet their data migration timelines. Working with a partner like CDW to provide supplemental help desk support or adoption and change management training across IT environments can keep the technology merger on track and avoid downtime or costly inefficiencies. 

Prepare for Data Migration by Cleaning Up Separate Data Environments in Advance

Ensuring proper data hygiene within the environments of the source and target companies is necessary to avoid messy data transfer. If the source and target companies do not clean up their separate data environments prior to combining, DeVries explains they run the risk of migrating the “garbage” into the new environment. This is one of the most common pitfalls in the course of bringing together two data centers.

To avoid having a major data clean-up on the backend and ensure a more efficient migration process, the source and target companies should individually clean up their data environments before merging. This shores up data hygiene and also ensures that the combined data environment will be more secure. 

Leverage CDW’s IT Expertise to Ensure a Successful M&A Experience

While the M&A process may be complicated, working with CDW ensures that migrating separate IT environments doesn’t have to be. Whether you need data storage and migration, software management, compliance and risk management, or additional IT support staff and training resources, CDW’s solution architects can help companies optimize their M&A strategies. 

Discover How CDW’s Amplified Infrastructure Services Can Ensure a Successful Merge of IT Environments

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