Cloud computing services continue to evolve rapidly – becoming both more powerful and more complex. Based on what you read in the trade press and from analysts, your company is probably either working in or thinking of migrating key computing and application functions to the Cloud. If you are still on sidelines and thinking of making a much bigger investment, the question you should ask yourself is a simple one that probably has a complex answer:

Is your Company ready for the Cloud?

This post sheds light on the types of things you need to understand before you migrate some or all of your computing infrastructure or applications to the Cloud.

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The Advantages of Migrating to the Cloud

Cloud migration entails moving your in-house computing resources (i.e., data, applications and infrastructure) to a Cloud services provider as seamlessly as possible. There are several reasons why Cloud Services are increasingly attractive:

  1. Reduced costs via a usage-based, as opposed to a capital investment, model.
  2. Improved scalability and agility
  3. Rapid, simple deployment of new applications

Let’s break things down a little more:

  1. Reduced Costs – Cost reductions from migrating to the Cloud arise as information technology spendubg transitions from a capital expense to an operational expense. You can reduce costs by paying for resources based on usage rather than purchasing more computing capacity than you actually use.
  2. Improved Scalability and Agility – Similarly, your enterprise can expand or contract the amount of computing resources used in a highly flexible manner. You no longer have to account for large capital outlays to scale up resources and retire legacy systems.
  3. Rapid, Simple Deployment – In the Cloud, your organization can leverage lower costs and improved agility to deploy applications much faster than before. In essence, Cloud providers make it easier for your organization to focus on its core competencies.

Cloud Migration Specifics

Cloud services, such as Amazon AWS and Microsoft Cloud, have matured quickly, but, in truth, many enterprises have stumbled as they have tried to take advantage of new offerings. Some of the most common pitfalls of Cloud migration revolve around:

  1. Assessing your readiness
  2. The Design of your corporate Cloud – public, private, or hybrid
  3. Planning for migration
  4. Refactoring applications to run in the Cloud
  5. Fully understanding Cloud security models
  6. Putting in place proper SLAs with Cloud providers
  7. Ensuring interoperability between internal and Cloud infrastructure and operations

Let’s go a little deeper:

  1. Readiness Assessment – There are three things to consider: (1) The nature, amount, and quality of your data, (2) the impact of a migration on your computing, network, and business infrastructure, and (3) the total cost of ownership over time of making the migration.
  2. Design – There are several things to consider, including
  1. The type of Cloud deployment.
  2. Resource needs and identification
  3. Technology choices
  4. Orchestration
  5. Operations and monitoring
  6. Capacity planning and performance
  7. Security model
  1. Migration Planning – These key steps are critical:
  1. Create a detailed series of steps to migrate infrastructure and applications.
  2. Training of people who need to implement the Cloud.
  3. The timing of the implementation.
  4. An estimate of the cost of the migration.
  1. Implementation – There are five steps in a successful Cloud implementation:
  1. Design and prototyping
  2. Implementation
  3. Integration
  4. Training
  5. Migration
  1. Cloud Management and Enhancements – which includes DevOps and Operations, new features to be added over time, and a lifecycle management process for applications and infrastructure.

How Can Enterprises Ensure Successful Cloud Migration?

To bring the advantages of the Cloud to life and avoid the common pitfalls, you must choose a partner with the right level of expertise in Cloud migration. As an elite, experienced collaborator, the VIAcode team can provide your enterprise with a holistic analysis to assess your Cloud readiness. By taking into account business aspects as well as technical considerations, VIAcode can shepherd your Cloud migration from end to end. Determining your Cloud readiness is a complex endeavor that requires sound analysis by a technically elite partner. The advantages and pitfalls of the Cloud are numerous, but with the right expertise and consultation, your enterprise may bring the benefits of the Cloud to fruition faster than you may assume.