Is It Time To Hit The Button On Your Cloud Migration?

6 Key Steps to Ensure Success 

Cloud computing has become an increasingly integral part of doing business for organisations of all sizes. As the cloud allows companies to efficiently scale computing resources up and down based on demand, more and more mid-sized businesses are considering migrating mission-critical systems to the cloud.

However, while the cloud offers enticing benefits like reduced IT costs, increased flexibility, easier disaster recovery, and greater collaboration capabilities, migrating legacy on-premises systems to the cloud still requires careful planning and execution. Without a structured approach, your organisation’s cloud initiative could wind up over budget, behind schedule, and lacking the full capabilities required to meet your business goals.

To ensure your company’s cloud migration sets you up for transformative success rather than frustrating failure, be sure to follow these six key steps:

Step 1. Build a Detailed Cloud Strategy

The first step is outlining core objectives you aim to achieve from a cloud migration as well as constraints. Critical elements to cover in your strategy include:

  • Business goals behind migrating systems, applications, data, etc to the cloud
  • Specific use cases and workloads to prioritize migrating
  • Budget, projected costs and target timelines for completion
  • Cloud deployment models – public, private, hybrid – and which applications fit each
  • Technical requirements, security policies, compliance factors


Having a well-defined roadmap keeps your migration focused on delivering true business value.


Step 2. Choose the Optimal Migration Approach

Once you know what you want to migrate and why, deciding how you’ll execute the move is crucial. Look at whether existing systems can be re-platformed, re-hosted, re-purchased or re-factored.

Lift and shift migrations that re-platform on-prem apps to cloud infrastructure without changes provide the fastest path. However, re-architecting apps using cloud-native features allows you to best leverage capabilities like autoscaling.

Measure performance criteria, integration needs and other variables to select the right migration methodology per application workload.


Step 3. Select the Best Cloud Platform and Provider

Do diligence on hyperscale cloud leaders like Microsoft Azure, AWS, and Google Cloud Platform to see which would best fulfill your functional requirements, business goals and workload profiles. Compare strengths around security, analytics, mobile capabilities, and ease of scalability expansion. 

You should also examine managed services providers that can deploy and handle multi-cloud environments. The right provider partnership lets your organisation focus on innovation rather than cloud management.


Step 4. Migrate and Integrate Data

When shifting databases, storage, and data platforms into the cloud, it is crucial to make sure that no critical data gets “lost in translation”. Meticulously orchestrating data migration waves and validating completeness allows you to decommission legacy storage systems. 

Equally important is integrating migrated cloud data with your remaining on-premises apps and data sources. Prioritising APIs and real-time data integration prevents productivity lag from siloed, disconnected systems.


Step 5. Handle Security, Governance, and Compliance

While cloud providers implement robust physical and infrastructure security controls, the responsibility for securing cloud apps, data encryption, user access controls and network policies will still fall onto you. Make sure your IT policies and governance procedures are strengthened to adhere to industry regulations and internal compliance standards before and after the migration.

Having well-defined user roles, permissions, and security groups applied consistently across both your on-prem and cloud resources can help avoid misconfigurations that can induce risk.


Step 6. Prepare Employees for the Cultural Shift

To avert cloud migration failure, don’t underestimate the IT cultural transformation your business may require. Employees accustomed to on-premises infrastructure need training to adapt workflows, processes, and toolsets to the cloud model.

Make sure you deliver the required skill-building, documentation, and support resources to smooth out the learning curve for your staff. Additionally, plan for some temporary productivity dips surrounding migration events. Maintaining strong change management ensures your staff works with, not against, cloud transformation initiatives.

The Key Takeaway

Embracing cloud migration unlocks immense potential for mid-sized enterprises through increased IT agility, resilience, and innovation velocity – but only with proper planning and phased execution. Following structured steps for building cloud strategy, selecting the right providers, transforming applications, securing data, and onboarding employees onto new systems clears a path to realising the cloud’s full benefits.

Does your organisation have a cloud migration planned to facilitate next-level growth? Reach out to me if you want to discuss how I can help ensure your technical and organisational transition to the cloud goes smoothly.

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