The cloud is here and it’s here to stay. According to IDG’s cloud computing study last year, an estimated 73% of businesses had at least one application or portion of their enterprise computing infrastructure in the cloud. With that figure only expected to rise in 2019, the cloud’s benefits can no longer be disputed or ignored.
As businesses become more aware of this and start to plan their migration to the cloud, a quick google search can throw up about as many questions as it does answers. There’s a lot to consider and without a correct strategy in place, there’s potentially room for error. Before being able to reap the rewards of cloud computing, businesses must carefully circumnavigate the common challenges along the road to cloud adoption. Let’s break them down and look into the solutions.
One of the biggest problems when migrating to the cloud is organisations not understanding what kind of cloud model or service their operations actually require. The cloud offers many beneficial solutions, but it’s not a one-size-fits-all model. To get the best out of the cloud, the solution must be tailored to each individual user, and to do that the business requirements and motivations for adopting the cloud must be properly understood.
Once the business requirements and strategies have been outlined, the appropriate cloud models and services can be determined. The main cloud models are public, private and hybrid. A public cloud is accessible to anyone on the service, whereas a private cloud is not exposed to anyone outside of the user’s network. A hybrid cloud is a combination of both cloud models working interdependently.
The main cloud services are Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). Have a read of our previous blog post if you’re unfamiliar with these terms.
With cloud solutions a relatively new prospect, and cloud technologies that are constantly evolving, there is the possibility organisations don’t possess the current technical expertise to operate in a cloud environment or correctly oversee a migration process. A successful migration requires a substantial amount of planning to ensure a smooth implementation; read our steps for a successful cloud migration to find out more.
Every business will be different, but put simply, your workforce may need ‘reshuffling’ upon adopting a cloud solution. That’s not to say redundancies are required, but the roles and responsibilities of the current IT team will likely shift from current skills to those concerning cloud-based technologies. This may require more training, or even require new employees. IT expertise can always be outsourced and IT consultants are available, but bear in mind, the cloud is for life not just for Christmas! Plan for the long term and how your team will need to adapt to get the best out of working with the cloud – analyse current operations and compare them to the new structure.
Each business is different when moving to a cloud model, and the ease of the migration process will likely depend on what needs moving and what capacity the cloud will operate within the individual organisation. Moving data and applications can be a complicated and time-consuming process, especially if existing resources are not compatible to work with a cloud model and need configuring. The current infrastructure should be accessed and assessed to determine what is worth moving into the cloud and what isn’t. If you’re unsure, consider starting small and moving across email or backup services, and scale up from there.
Typically it’s easier to launch new applications within the cloud or build new resources than attempting to implement existing legacy systems. Leaving behind familiar legacy systems can be a difficult decision and transition, especially if they’re still running smoothly, but it may be appropriate or in some cases necessary. Otherwise a hybrid model will have to be considered, and this brings its own set of complexities. This links back to my first point about the importance of understanding the business’s operations to determine the subsequent cloud requirements and the right fit cloud solution.
We hope this blog post has been useful and you understand the possible challenges and solutions to consider when moving to the cloud. For a more in depth look at how to plan your cloud migration, head over to insights and read our migration guide. As always, if you have any questions about this blog post or in general, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Matthew is Secura’s content specialist, producing gripping, emotionally complex, edge of your seat, cloud hosting articles and videos.
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