SIG: legacy document repository migration to SharePoint

SIG is a Swiss supplier of local energy services. The company serves 250,000 clients in the Canton of Geneva, providing water, gas, electricity and thermal energy. SIG manages waste water, waste recycling and also offers energy and telecommunications services. All SIG activities seek to promote smarter energy consumption, within a framework of on-going sustainable development.

SIG used a document management solution to store documents such as electrical diagrams,  installation photos and corporate communication images, but it had reached the end of its shelf-life in terms of software and support. SIG opted for Microsoft SharePoint as their company-wide, business-wide, internet and intranet platform and wanted to concentrate all company documents on this new platform. A migration was therefore needed to export documents from the legacy repository to SharePoint whilst keeping valuable metadata from the existing assets.


Migrate documents with metadata from a product that did not offer any exporting mechanisms.
Migrate documents with metadata into SharePoint which did not offer any metadata importing mechanisms.
Interact with users not very familiar with document management systems and introduce them to their new system.
Deliver custom-tailored training for different types of users.

Our solution
Content Management

To decommission the old document management solution, we began the project by holding workshops with the various departments to discover which documentation or photos were to be migrated, which metadata would need to be kept, which classification had been used in the past and what their expectations were concerning their future SharePoint sites.
To help each department visualise how their future document management system would work, we created sample SharePoint sites and customised them according to their individual needs.
At the same time, our technical team developed a custom migration tool for the legacy document management solution to be able to export files to shared drives, along with Excel mapping file for all of the metadata.
We then used our SmartWave SharePoint migration tool to import documents and associate the metadata with the imported documents.
After the migration we held another series of workshops with the users to validate the document import and the metadata. Each department received custom-tailored training sessions for key users to enable them to embrace fully all functionalities of their new document management sites in SharePoint.



The old document management solution had become obsolete from both a technical point of view and in terms of user experience. SharePoint offered a much richer user experience. It also allowed each department to create their own site and landing page to provide site visitors with in-depth information about their department.


The old proprietary document repository required specific support and a dedicated team. With this new configuration, company-wide documents can now be managed in a single platform. SIG rationalised its maintenance and support costs whilst providing a better end-user service.


We kept valuable metadata information about the documents that were added throughout the years whilst migrating to a new and better solution. We also used this project as an opportunity to remove unnecessary or redundant information.


Users can now employ modern classification techniques, such as managed metadata, or tagging for their documents and photos, thus enabling site visitors to find documents more quickly and by different means.


Using our SmartWave SharePoint migration tool we were able to carry out the project quickly and run a configuration-based document migration. This generic and simple-to-use tool is also available for other projects.