“The could” has become the standard for businesses all over the world. Many business owners think of it as the essence of a highly functioning enterprise. And they’re not far from the truth. Once you decide to make a similar move, you can be certain your businesses and processes will all be taken up a notch.
But as you might have already heard, the process is no easy job. In fact, many business owners postpone a similar move because they’re clueless from where to start. There are three steps that matter in migrating your business to the cloud: planning, execution, and testing. If any of the previous is overlooked, the whole migration matter will turn out to be a lengthy and painful process. So, we have some pieces of advice for all business owners that think about making a similar move in the near future. Keep reading below to find out more.
#1. Research cloud vendors
Moving to the cloud depends almost entirely on the vendor you choose. So being mindful from the very beginning will help you enjoy a smoother and hassle-free migration process. And this is where things can become tricky. Even if you have a vendor in mind, they might be unable to meet your specific business needs. Luckily enough, there are a lot of cloud business solutions you can choose from and make sure the entire process is taken care of professionally.
But enough with the chit-chat, let’s see which are the things you should pay attention to when choosing a cloud provider for your enterprise.
- Standards and certifications – all cloud providers should comply with all standards in the industry and should be always ready to prove this through certifications. If a provider you thought about collaborating with cannot meet this simple demand, skip them.
- Technologies and services – when choosing a cloud vendor, you should ensure all your current technologies align perfectly with the ones offered by the company. Look into providers that can successfully offer you guidance and support in meeting your cloud business needs and goals.
- Business policies, data governance and data security – migrating to the cloud poses a huge security concern: information security. So, we shouldn’t be telling you the provider you choose should have impeccable security standards and protocols. To determine how the provider handles data and security crisis, take a glance at their data loss and notification process. This will help you ensure everything in this regard is perfectly aligned with your company.
- Performance and reliability – fortunately enough, you can measure your cloud prover’s performance easily by checking their performance against the SLAs for the last half of year or even a year.
- Company profile (including revenue) – a reliable cloud provider is a stable provider. Because of this reason, make sure to check the company’s financial stability before signing any papers with them. You want to ensure they’ll be able to successfully complete your company’s migration to the cloud.
- Previous contracts – another tell-tale sign of a reliable vendor is the contracts they signed previously and how they completed them. You want to search for successfully completed projects since this grows your chances of a successful migration to the cloud.
- Partnerships and dependencies – search for vendors that partner with other reliable companies. Big names avoid associating their image with shady, unreliable players.
- Migration support, exit plan and vendor lock-in – in the industry, there is a concept known as vendor lock-in. Simply put, the vendor you choose initially will raise some difficulties if you choose to use another player’s services in the future.
Once you ensure the provider you choose will deliver the services and products you need at the highest possible standard, you can start preparing the migration process.
#2. Prepare the migration
If you choose a reputable vendor of cloud business solutions, preparing the migration will be a breeze. They will assist and counsel you through all the steps your company must take, plus they will handle all technical aspects. Prepare for the discussion with the team by thinking of the following.
- What part of your data and apps should you move first to the cloud? Ideally, move the easiest ones first. This will offer you a better idea of how the whole process will evolve and it will also be easier. By migrating the right applications to the cloud, you’ll deal better with unexpected issues that may emerge.
- Will the move affect my company’s performance? Obviously, moving to the cloud will help your company perform better. This is the main reason why you migrate to the cloud, after all.
- How will my application architecture change? Ask your provider to make all the necessary adjustments to ensure all servers and systems will work seamlessly on the cloud, just like they do now.
- Is your team ready for the change? Make sure you have somebody train and prepare your staff for the migration. Some systems will operate differently, so everybody must be familiar with them.
- Security concerns. Make sure you fully understand you won’t have any application or system on hardware. Everything will be stored in and operated from the cloud.
#3. The process itself
The process itself is also tricky. But a team to guide you will be a valuable asset, in this scenario. They will also help you plan every step in the process. For a good migration experience, make sure you are assisted in regards with the following.
- The method used to actually migrate all data
- Security throughout the migration process
- The vendor has the right tools and methods to help you migrate all data
- The provider is not locking in your systems and ensures your environment remains portable.
#4. Post-Migration Check
Now, it’s time to perform some tests and see how successful the migration was. If you collaborate with the right provider, they will ensure they do this automatically. Some necessary steps that must be taken in the post-migration phase are the following.
- The provider must ensure the migration actually worked
- They must ensure all the data made it to the cloud
- All data must be usable by ALL users
- All the internal communication channels work
- All admins can monitor the could
Migrating to the cloud is no easy job, but finding a great team to help you definitely counts. So, get to work.