Migrating to the Cloud can be a daunting prospect for businesses of all sizes – from SMEs to global business titans, it can be fraught with difficulties and challenges. Transitioning to the Cloud is more than simply moving data from one location to another, it is a process that takes into account other aspects such as resilience, geo-location and scalability.
Technology leaders today must consider the risks, rather than just thinking about leveraging technology to bolster their day-to-day operations. In order for Cloud migration to be a success for a business, the challenges need to be successfully addressed, in order for the benefits to be maximised. As 2023 continues, now is the time to leverage the advantages of Cloud to the fullest and to remember the ingredients for success that can help organisations take their migration efforts to the next level.
Taking the first steps
Gartner has forecasted that by 2026, Cloud spending as a percentage of total IT budgets will reach 17% and will account for a significant 25% of global IT spending in the imminent future. Whilst there’s currently speculation regarding a decrease in Cloud spending, it’s important to remember that not all organisations have migrated and many have more work to do on their journey to the Cloud.
With this in mind, it couldn’t be more vital for the future of many businesses that their Cloud migration takes place seamlessly. The Cloud is pivotal in giving businesses the opportunity to achieve transformation value and as PWC’s 2023 Cloud Survey uncovered, business success doesn’t stem from piecemeal migration but from a thorough reinvention of organisations. From improved decision making to increased productivity, agility and cost savings – the Cloud can truly help businesses at a time when they are under financial pressure and when digital transformation has become expected from stakeholders.
Getting it right first time
Before the migration takes place, IT leaders need to define the business strategy and objectives, determining what they want to achieve from Cloud adoption, such as improved flexibility, lower costs or enhanced efficiency. When these goals have been defined, organisations can configure how best to achieve them and identify any challenges that they may come up against in the migration process and before creating a concise and actionable plan with all of the foreseeable future scenarios. By thinking of the end goals first, the Cloud migration won’t be out of touch with the wider business strategy, preventing the financial and resource constraints that can be associated with transformation. Getting it first right time is that much easier when the strategy has been fully thought through and carefully considered.
A company’s existing technology infrastructure also needs to be taken into account, as new Cloud solutions should build synergies rather than require an additional set of investments to be made. Businesses in many cases already have significant amounts of existing infrastructure that have been developed over the past decades, and a move to the Cloud has the potential to affect other systems if not undertaken correctly. By prioritising solutions that complement fundamental elements of their technology, businesses can highlight which areas need to be updated in line with the new Cloud solution.
Furthermore, Cloud migration should take the entire business into account, not just the IT department. Not only does this ensure that the company’s technology experts are not overburdened with the migration, but it also removes decision-making siloes to ensure the Cloud solution is beneficial on a larger and longer-term basis. Fostering a culture of collaboration and communication with relevant stakeholders across the company can make a huge difference to the overall success of implementation. It’s this integration between technology and the wider business that can take Cloud migration to another level, with a synergy between technology and business needs.
Choosing the right technology partner
McKinsey predicts that by 2024 wasted Cloud migration spend will reach $100 billion, and enterprises cite costs around migration as a major inhibitor to adopting the Cloud. Without a cost effective and successful migration, budgets can be quickly squandered and so choosing the right technology partner to help couldn’t be more important. This partner can provide an invaluable external perspective that can often mitigate some of the challenges associated with migration.
Technology partners can maximise the potential of the Cloud by choosing what is optimal for an organisation based on its requirements and unique characteristics. A consultant can first conduct a Cloud requirement analysis to determine what the organisation needs, by hosting interviews with stakeholders, reviewing documentation and building it into business flows. They can advise on the optimal Cloud provider, explain potential challenges and risks, and present the concrete benefits that will apply. Migrations are not easy and by supplementing an internal team with the Cloud experience of an external provider, the process can be that much smoother. Whether a migration is from on-premise to Cloud or by modernising systems towards a Cloud native application, a technology partner can devise a strategy and roadmap to give a migration the best chance of success.
When it comes to security, the weakest link often comes down to humans and not the technology. With organisations now facing large fines for breaches and non-compliance with GDPR, it’s vital that all the potential business risks are considered ahead of the migration. CloudOps consulting can even design a hybrid or Cloud only infrastructure from scratch. The initial migration is not the end of a consultants involvement, as they can improve the performance and optimise the costs of existing infrastructure. Whether it’s security enhancements or advanced disaster recovery services, consultants can ensure that a migration continues to be a success in the long-term.
As we move into 2023, now is the time to leverage the advantages that the Cloud brings and take note of the factors that help companies streamline their migration or Cloud management to stay ahead of the competition. It’s never too late for organisations to take their Cloud migration to the next level and by working with the right partner, the challenges associated with a migration can be successfully managed.
Krzysztof is Head of Technology at Future Processing, a leading software development company based in Poland. With more than a decade of experience in delivering software, he has worked in various roles, from delivering software as a Software Developer and Solution Architect, to more organisational and leadership roles. This includes becoming part of the technical advisory and supervision department in fast-growing organisations.
In his role at Future Processing, Krzysztof is responsible for shaping the company’s technological capabilities, ways of working and technology standards, to ensure all teams can benefit from sharing knowledge and experience. Additionally, he is a regular contributor to a number of industry-focused publications and software development events, as well as offering training and co-organising local software development communities, including Microsoft Azure User Group Poland, Software Craftsmanship Silesia and Gliwice Software BarCamp.