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How Can A Company Migrate To The Cloud? What Are The Prerequisites, Steps, Risks, and Challenges?

Moving to the cloud is an eventual step every company takes as part of its digital transformation journey. Either you choose to go with a complete cloud migration or a hybrid model, you will have to take up the right strategy towards cloud implementation.

To make your cloud migration successful and efficient, let us show the best practices, steps to take, and the risks involved.

Cloud Migration Challenges

Figuring out the challenges involved with cloud migration is probably the first thing you need to educate yourself about. If you are not prepared to meet the challenges, you could lose a lot of money and productivity with a subpar cloud process that ultimately will not serve the purpose. Here are some common cloud migration challenges that you might face:

Forming Your Cloud Migration Strategy And Plan

Any new technology brings in a level of disruption to your existing business processes. Your success depends on how well you execute the implementation such that the associated disruptions do not affect your overall profitability and productivity. You should be aware of what needs to be moved to the cloud first. It is a good idea to start by migrating your redundant and non-critical data to the cloud first. This helps you gain familiarity with the cloud environment, test out the implementation without the risk of losing any critical data.

The Cost Of Cloud Migration

Moving to the cloud comes at a cost. While it may be cost-effective in the long term, the benefits generally depend on your particular needs and the overall optimization that you can achieve with cloud migration.

When you calculate your cloud migration plan’s financial cost, you will have to include the cloud fees and charges and the indirect costs such as costs for training your employees, refactoring your existing applications, and implementing the organization-wide changes, and so on.

Cloud Security Concerns

A primary reason many businesses are still reluctant about a full-fledged cloud migration is security concerns. Of course, it is a justified concern as your data will be stored in remote servers under the third-party vendor’s responsibility. But technology has advanced quite well, and with the latest security updates and following the best security practices, you can address all your cloud security concerns.

Do take due diligence with the vendors you work with and classify your data for implementing an adequate level of access control. Understand the security regulations and compliance assurance given by the cloud provider and be aware of the security controls in place.

You can also choose to keep the most confidential data stored on on-premise servers and only move the non-critical data to your cloud solutions.

Cloud Migration And Training

Often, businesses tend to overlook the importance of training their employees on cloud solutions, leading to waste of resources. You need to make sure all your employees are adequately trained on using the new solutions and are ready to integrate them into their daily workflows. The success of your cloud migration depends on how well it is utilized.

Cloud Vendor Lock-In

Cloud solutions can be flexible because you can scale up or down your services and even move from one vendor to another. But in practice, it can get difficult to move from one vendor as moving data from one cloud to another can be a lengthy and costly process. So take your time to choose a vendor who makes it easy for you to execute data migrations and have necessary SLA terms that allow you to have flexible options for choosing to continue or quit using their cloud services.

Potential Risks

There are some more risks you must carefully consider and prepare yourself for before opting for a cloud service:

  • Think about how sensitive your data is. If your data is highly confidential and a possible data breach can cause a heavy loss, it is better to keep it stored on your on-premise systems isolated from public access. Consider opting for a hybrid model in such cases.
  • Consider the overall costs involved, such as maintenance, scaling, availability, and the overall returns in terms of enhanced customer experience and profits. If adopting the cloud does not necessarily meet your efficiency needs, you may have to rethink your migration.
  • Consider how important it is to keep using your legacy software. Some legacy and proprietary software may not be legally able to deploy to the cloud. Some applications may not work correctly if deployed to the cloud due to network latency issues or platform incompatibilities.
  • Consider how much control you want to exert on your hardware systems. You may lose some transparency and control in debugging or performance optimization when your solutions are entirely moved to the cloud.
  • Consider the type of cloud service you opt for and the associated risks. For instance, subscribing to a shared service can cause some performance issues or security concerns as you will be sharing hardware resources with another user. Alternatively, dedicated cloud resources can be too expensive for your needs. You have to balance your requirements and choose the plan that best fits you.
  • Downtimes are a possibility with cloud solutions. Look for backup plans and pay attention to the SLA terms when you subscribe to cloud service providers to deal with possible downtimes.

Steps to Migrating to Cloud

  • Define your goals for the migration plan
  • Evaluate the costs and needs involved. Audit your existing systems and make a checklist of items you need to look out for, including your needs, concerns, risks, and the relevant contingency plans.
  • Evaluate your existing environment and applications and prepare your systems to be ready to move to the cloud.
  • Choose the type of cloud deployment you need and choose your cloud vendor.
  • Choose the right architecture that fits your needs.
  • Make a phased cloud migration plan prioritizing the components that need to be migrated with each phase.
  • Establish the metrics and performance baselines to help track the success of your cloud migration.
  • Execute your Cloud migration plan.
  • Review your apps, databases, and migrated components. Test your systems well before going live.
  • Conduct regular reviews, security testing, and maintenance audit to keep track of your cloud services and monitor your performance and resource usage.

Cloud migration plans can be a daunting process for any organization. For any queries and expert guidance, contact iSectra today.

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