Guide

Adopting and Migrating to the Cloud

Learn how to address the challenges and unlock the benefits of taking your enterprise to the cloud.

These days, speed and agility are the keys to staying ahead of the competition.

You not only want to bring new products to market faster, but you also want to be able to change the way you develop those products in order to free up more time and resources for your teams to innovate.

On this page, you will find everything you need to know about achieving both of these goals, along with how adopting and migrating to the cloud—either partially or fully—will help your business unlock cost savings, increase your ability to adopt new technologies, and help you create a competitive advantage

Businesses are increasingly feeling pressure to do much more with much less.

Compounding the challenge is the fact that, for many companies, this pressure is coming from a number of fronts.

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There is pressure from customers.

In today’s on-demand world, customers want access to innovative new products and services as soon as possible—and if they don’t get it from one place, they’ll move on to another option.

There is pressure from company leadership.

The constant drumbeat from up high to reduce costs while still delivering innovative new products and services can be deafening.

There is pressure from new competitors.

New startups are arriving every day, and many of them are more nimble, responsive, and disruptive than established players.

Dive Deeper: 2021 Trends for Enterprise Cloud Adoption

Benefits of the cloud

Enterprises that migrate to the cloud in some capacity—fully, hybrid, multi-cloud—are more agile, able to scale, and primed to adopt new technologies as they arrive in order to enhance their business.

They’re also able to unlock cost savings via the one-two punch of being able to work more efficiently and make smarter decisions leveraging larger pools of data for analytics.

Some of the main benefits of cloud adoption for enterprises include:

  1. Efficiency
  2. Security
  3. Scalability
  4. Mobility

Let’s dig deeper into some of the benefits the cloud delivers:

1. Efficiency

Purchasing and maintaining IT equipment is expensive. Underutilizing IT resources is even more expensive.

The cloud eliminates many of these costs by reducing the need for you to have dedicated IT teams to manage infrastructure.

Additionally, modern development practices such as DevOps and containerization thrive in the cloud environment, delivering your teams with more efficient ways to develop and deploy innovative products.

2. Security

Data breaches are an ever-present concern, and while having all your data on-premises may seem like the safer option, the reality is that cloud platforms can also provide you with robust security measures.

These measures include baked-in authentication, access control, and encryption—foundations upon which you can easily build upon to increase your data protection while still making data accessible throughout your operations.

Additionally, cloud platforms provide you with increased disaster recovery capabilities by automating backups and creating data redundancies to make restoring information and applications faster.

3. Scalability

Scaling can be hard for any business, particularly on premises where it is easy to over and under-provision resources.

During increased usage times—launches of new products, peaks in users, etc.—you don’t want to be guessing whether you have too little or too much infrastructure horsepower.

As an IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), the cloud makes it far easier to control costs as you scale since you can quickly add and reduce resources on-demand.

4. Mobility

These days, companies want to maximize flexibility when it comes to how and where their teams work.

While achieving this flexibility is certainly possible on-premises, the centralized nature of the cloud makes remote work easier to implement safely and securely.

The Path to Elite Cloud Performance

While every organization making the move to the cloud begins at a different starting position, there are generally five different levels that need to be reached in order to fully leverage the cost savings and agility of cloud platforms.

1

If your organization is currently at this level, you are on-premises only and rely upon bare-metal machines with some virtualization.

There are benefits to being in this state—maximizing legacy datacenter infrastructure investments, for example—but those benefits are likely outweighed by the flexibility, ease-of-scale, and advanced services your competitors enjoy.

2

Your technical team is experimenting with deploying applications in the cloud.

Because of this, you may be temporarily losing the security and compliance enjoyed within your on-premises datacenter in exchange for developing cloud skillsets.

3

Your organization has made a strategic cloud adoption decision focused on a single cloud provider, and you have performed a cloud readiness assessment, which has created a blueprint for your migration plan.

At this level, you are actively migrating applications and data to the cloud and making decisions to rehost, refactor, or re-platform each workload. Additionally, your organization is implementing automation to ensure security, compliance, and policy requirements are continuously met.

4

You are now leveraging multiple public cloud providers with some automation to provision and scale workloads. Cloud governance is implemented and actively audited across clouds.

At this level, you also increase your ability to measure application performance, reliability, and cloud costs.

These insights combined with each cloud provider’s unique solutions now drive decisions on which cloud will host specific workloads.

5

You are at the peak level of public cloud utilization. You are leveraging the flexibility of hybrid cloud infrastructure, are agnostic towards cloud providers, and have proactive automation that drives workload resiliency and scalability to meet demands.

You also leverage insights gathered from cloud usage data to continuously optimize cloud performance while reducing costs. Most importantly, your team’s ability to outpace the innovation of your competition has resulted in reaching organizational goals.

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Getting started
on your path to the cloud

Before your business starts its journey to the cloud, you need to take a thorough look at your current state.

That means examining four specific areas:

  1. Your readiness to adopt the cloud
  2. Your application portfolio
  3. Your current workflow
  4. Your end goals

Let’s dive into each one:

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Your readiness to adopt the cloud

As previously mentioned, adopting the cloud means a major change to your organization’s infrastructure. Because of this, it’s critical that you understand your own capabilities as well as the willingness of every person within your organization to make the shift.

In other words, you need to know, before you even begin, whether you will need outside help with your journey to the cloud and whether everyone is on board with making that journey to begin with.

The first of these considerations is relatively easy—you either have the skills in-house or you don’t—but in many cases, getting buy-in on such a massive change can be difficult.

In many ways, adopting the cloud is more about culture than technical know-how. Unless there is widespread agreement on why you want to make the shift, your path to the cloud is going to be a rocky one.

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Your application portfolio

Every organization has applications it relies upon. At the same time, not every application is suitable for the cloud.

The good news is that a cloud readiness assessment is one of the most powerful ways you can determine how to fully leverage the cloud to benefit your business.

By taking a thorough inventory of all your applications, you will identify those that will work best in your new cloud environment, those that will stay on premises, and those that should be retired from service.

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Your current code development workflow

An assessment of your current workflows—and potential inefficiencies within those workflows—is a necessary step for making the most of your cloud migration efforts.

Ask yourself:

  • What are our current development cycle bottlenecks?
  • How much are we willing to invest in upskilling talent?
  • Are we ready to embrace a DevOps culture?

By determining the answers to these questions, you’ll have a better understanding of what you’ll be able to achieve in the cloud as well as those areas in your current code development workflow that need to be overhauled.

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Your end goals

A good rule of thumb when making a major change is to know where you’re going and then work backwards. So, as you start working toward adopting the cloud, you need to identify just what you’re trying to achieve.

To that end, here are some common reasons enterprises make the move to the cloud:

  • Greater flexibility in IT operating costs
  • Ability to leverage tools like artificial intelligence and machine learning to gain better insight from data
  • Faster development and deployment of new products
  • Ensures business continuity and disaster recovery

Work with your team to determine what your goals are so that you can make a smarter decision about your approach to the cloud.

In a Nutshell …

More and more enterprises are making the move to the cloud in some capacity in order to address challenges in today’s marketplace.

The pressure to increase innovation, realize cost savings, and bring new products to market faster than the competition is very real.

By adopting the cloud, whether that adoption is all-in or via a hybrid solution, you can achieve the efficiency, flexibility, and cost savings to gain an edge in your industry.

To learn more about cloud adoption, or to start your own journey to the cloud, contact one of our experts today.

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