Cloud Migration - How to decide if you are ready?

Cloud technologies and services are very popular, many business (small, medium and large) moving to cloud. There are many cloud providers in the market some of the TOP providers are AWS, GCP, AZURE, IBM, ORACLE. But moving to the cloud is a significant change in the existing infrastructure and adoption of new technologies. Before organization decide to migrate to cloud they need to perform assessment to understand their cloud needs, solution offered, custom solution requirements etc.

Here are some of the common Question you can ask while migrating to cloud

  • What are organization goals?
  • Is your business ready for Cloud migration?
  • What are the migration strategies?
  • Player's involved? and Additional IT resources
  • Who are cloud service providers?
  • What are the best cloud security measures?
  • Will it happen without interruption of daily operation?

What are organization goals?

This is most important factor while migrating to cloud or cloud technologies. Organizations like Healthcare, Retail, Insurance, Finance and have very specific needs, while migrating to cloud they need to list down all the future goals, target audience, technology requirement, scalability, analytics requirement, scalability before making a decision.

Ask following questions

  • Identify company needs to migrate to cloud?
  • What are the benefits you expect from cloud migration?
  • How your customer will get affected using cloud migration?
  • How much control you are looking while migration?
  • Cloud architecture, services and service provider you trust?

Is your business ready for Cloud migration?

Is your existing solution flexible enough to support easy cloud migration? Companies can migrate to cloud for various reason, that does not mean they are ready for migration. Sometimes decision made was too early or too late. Engaging right people at right time will help to make this decision easier. It is very critical if organization can evaluate from operation, existing dynamics, infrastructure, technology change, employee training, getting help from right consulting companies.

Ask following questions

  • Is organization need scalability?
  • Is current infrastructure flexible enough for cloud migration?
  • Is your organization ready for technology change?
  • Do you need to train your existing employees?
  • What is future workload/traffic your organization expecting?

What are the Migration Strategies?

Once organization evaluated existing infrastructure and technologies, next thing they need to decide is migration strategies needs to be used. Based on the existing infrastructure and flexibility of adopting new technology stack you can decide migration strategies.

  • List and Shift: It is also called as re-hosting or fork lifting, this approach allows moving an exiting application to the cloud without making any changes to existing technology or code. Operation is just to move application from existing servers to cloud servers. This is usually less time consuming and can be done with right resources.
  • Build new: Trash your existing codebase and services and start building your services from scratch. This solution takes more time and effort. This solution helps to take advantage of all latest and greatest cloud technologies.
  • Drop and Shop for 3rd party: This allows you to drop the old services and repurchase licenses of third-party services, which means you can use a cloud-based solution to replace a legacy application.
  • Replatform: In this approach companies can make changes in the configuration of an existing application and move it to the cloud to improve scalability, fault tolerance and performance.

Player's involved? and Additional IT resources?

Cloud migration can't be done right way if personnel with right skills set to understand technology is not involved. organization without a IT team should alway outsource cloud migration to experts.

There are lot of managed service providers available who can help your company attain its objectives. Although before choosing right organization its important to understand

  • What services offered by consulting firm?
  • company you choose right for the job?
  • is your data is safe and protected with them?

Also, even after you hire a good vendor, maintaining your cloud environment long term is another crucial part. The right team can handle every situation and reduce the changes of mishaps. Many team hire's additional IT staff or train existing employees. If you are getting help from right vendor for cloud migration and support, all the load off of your head and vendor can take care of things.

On the other hand, having IT experts on-site can be helpful. Companies that don't have employees with the required skillsets can hire IT professionals. If your company already has IT teams, many cloud providers offer training and certifications. This allows them to understand the cloud architecture and processes internally.

Who are cloud service providers?

Choosing a right cloud service provider for your need is another important aspect. Need to carefully understand your need and see if cloud service provider provides those services. Can you trust them with your database, and will they ensure a quality service at all times? Cloud service provider should be flexible enough to allow you to add any of your controls. Can you order additional services at any time? If you know what you need from the provider, you should not compromise and ask for anything less.

What are the best cloud security measures?

The most important aspect of using any cloud technology is understanding how impactful, secure, and robust it can be. These days, IT security attacks are common, and businesses must have security measures in place. However, a cloud system is generally more secure than private data centers. Cloud infrastructure backs up data and offers various security parameters and tools to encrypt data and detect potential cyber threats.

How to secure your AWS cloud infrastructure click here

Will it happen without interruption of daily operation?

This questions always concerns some of the small and medium business who are migrating to cloud from the existing infrastructure. Ideally, you would want to minimize or zero the impact of migration on your existing operations. However, it is almost possible to void any cutover with a proper deployment and redirection. Use of AB testing, weighted load balancer deployment can help to achieve this.

You can make the cutover time not as impactful on your operations by detailed planning of each step and having a skilled team by your side. Start preparing long before the cutover starts to have time on your side.

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