This post will show you the challenges and strategies for effective cloud migration
Migrating to the cloud has become more or less a necessity for businesses in the wake of the global pandemic. As consumers have moved to mobile and are increasingly using digital solutions (including cloud services) for the most critical as well as seemingly insignificant daily tasks, businesses need to meet consumer demand for convenience and always available, seamless service experience.
The best way for businesses to ensure this is to opt for the reliability, flexibility and agility offered by the cloud. The Cloud Migration industry is growing in leaps and bounds. The industry was valued at USD 2.82 billion in 2016 and is expected to grow at more than 17.93% over the forecast period of 2017 to 2025.
In this article, we will try and look at the inherent challenges and most effective strategies for successful cloud migrations and what it can achieve for businesses. Cloud migration solution can help your local business develop an effective cloud migration strategy.
Cloud Migration Challenges
The threat of downtime and of not having mission-critical business servers available during the migration process is enough to put a damper on many businesses’ cloud migration aspirations. This is why it’s critical for businesses to have the support of proper backup and resource allocation, as those outages can really cripple application performance and severely impact customer experience and loyalty.
2. Data vulnerability
Implementing effective cloud security controls is absolutely critical to minimize the risk of breach and data loss. Always keep in mind that data losses can happen during large data transfers, especially when moving data from one location to another. This could even jeopardize the entire migration process.
3. Interoperability and compatibility issues
Another major challenge in cloud migration deals with the rise of interoperability and compatibility issues between your existing applications and the new cloud environment. Different source systems, different coding structures, and unique data blends of the new infrastructure can give rise to persistent compatibility problems if the migration strategy fails to take compatibility into account.
Many cloud migration processes get stalled or remain incomplete due to overruns in both time and money. It is critical for businesses not to underestimate the scale, budget, and cost of the migration process.
Cloud Migration Strategies
1. Always entrust cloud migration to professionals
Cloud migration can be a complex enough process without amateurs messing it up. A reliable managed service provider (MSP) with ample cloud migration expertise in your domain can be your best bet for success with cloud migration.
The experts can help you make strategic decisions on a number of critical factors including the right time to migrate, identifying the right parts of your infrastructure for cloud migration, and effectively carrying out the transition with zero impact on daily operations.
MSPs typically have considerable security capabilities and skillsets, and can help you develop and deploy the right security controls. For a more detailed understanding of cloud migration benefits and cloud migration process, please consult Cloud cost management.
2. Have a sound and strategic migration plan
You should understand that once you undertake cloud migration, the process, managing the cloud infrastructure and its impact are a long-term venture. Consequently, you should have transparent discussions with your MSP to develop a 3-5-year plan to migrate all your hardware and applications to the cloud.
This provides you with the scope to periodically review your business goals to continuously fine-tune the strategy and consider which business parts may run better on the cloud, as well as determine the right time to move individual applications.
Cloud migration isn’t exactly ‘set it and forget it’, and you will need to adapt to the premise across deployments in on premise, the cloud, and hybrid architectures.
3. Simplify the migration process
As mentioned already, the cloud migration process can be optimized over time. When you’re starting out though, it may be easier to focus on making the migration execution tasks simpler.
A simple example could be to move the servers to the cloud first instead of implementing cloud applications or Azure Virtual Desktop. You should also consider having a checklist for cloud migration or get one at Cloud Direct Connect.
4. Manage security with an effective strategy
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) providers don’t provide data protection and recovery automatically. This is why it is critical for companies to devise and deploy a strong security strategy. The onus of implementing effective data backup, recovery and business continuity remains with the business owners.
You might also need additional data protection measures as per the unique needs of your data security and regulatory compliance parameters. While some solutions like Azure Site Recovery do offer data recovery from a historical backup point (- 72 hours) – this may not be adequate for your business’ data recovery time and recovery points objectives.
In order to guarantee business continuity, you can choose to distribute risk with cloud backups on both Azure and a private cloud run parallel. This ensures quick data recovery and restoration in case even two disasters strike at once – a natural disaster or a privacy breach and an Azure outage. You should also work in conjunction with your MSP to choose and implement a suitable third-party business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) solution.
Since these are developed in order to be deployed with the public cloud, these contain a variety of security tools including ransomware detection and protection from data deletion. This provides adequate security and reliable data recovery in case when your business suffers from data leaks, deletion, corruption or a ransomware attack.
Note: This is a guest post by Ben Ferguson