Cloud Migration

5 Steps to Simplify Cloud Migration

Written by Emmy Lippold
Chessboard Strategic IT Consultancy

Cloud hosting and cloud computing are the most significant change in IT spending in the last decade.

If you're considering a cloud migration project, it can be difficult to know where to start. The advice you may hear from other companies might not apply to your business' needs and goals, which makes research a confusing process.

We've boiled cloud migration down into 5 easy steps based on years of experience with projects of any size and scale.

1) Buying Into the Benefits

In the most basic terms, cloud hosting allows businesses to reduce their IT costs by trading capital expenditures on hardware and infrastructure for the fixed, monthly and easily-adjusted costs of cloud-hosting and software or platform as-a-service.

Many of our customers begin their cloud journey because they have out-of-date hardware and are investigating the costs of an upgrade. After initial research, many of them realise that they're in a perfect window of opportunity for migrating to the cloud.

The cloud offers additional benefits like:

  • Compliance with data protection legislation like GDPR and PCI-DSS requirements
  • Robust DR provision with fast data recovery from secure, secondary sites
  • Cloud expertise from managed services providers
  • Agility, flexibility and ability to scale up or down quickly

2) Choosing the Right Type of Cloud

Just like in matters of health and wellness, a holistic approach is the best way to approach cloud hosting. Solutions are not 'one-size-fits-all', and your strategic needs are unique.

With numerous options for cloud platform adoption, which is the best fit for you?

Understanding the main types of cloud 

Private Cloud 

  • A private cloud environment gives users maximum control and security over their data and information at all times. A single-tenant architecture is often best-suited for sectors where compliance and data security are paramount.
  • Run applications that require high-performance levels
  • Test and development environments, including app development
  • For running mission-critical business applications or legacy applications
  • Requires hardware or specific configuration

Public Cloud 

  • A public cloud environment can be configured to guarantee a system that suits each business, with smooth migration and comprehensive support. SysGroup has a wealth of experience with some of the largest public cloud platforms like Azure and AWS.
  • Store web and application servers where latency isn't a concern
  • Manage data in smaller or relational databases
  • Ideal for batch-processing apps and testing/development environments where scale is important

Hybrid Cloud

  • A hybrid cloud environment seamlessly connects public and private cloud with dedicated hardware in a bespoke tech environment, giving users the flexibility and scale of cloud, alongside excellent security, control, reliability and speed.
  • Particularly useful for untested workloads and 'fail fast' apps, seasonal traffic spikes and 'cloud bursting'

3) What Factors Should I Consider?

Our bespoke TechWorkshop formalises our expertise in creating an agile, agnostic approach to tech infrastructure. It takes our core principles to create a methodology with a systematic, thorough analysis of the customer's IT environment, followed by specific recommendations for how cloud hosting can enhance and complement your strategic goals.

Important questions to ask:

  • What are your specific needs? How long you can afford to be out of service differs from business to business.
  • How will you integrate cloud technology with your existing infrastructure?
  • Have you made a comprehensive plan? Don’t embark on your cloud solution without a full strategic plan for implementation and documentation.

4) Before You Begin...

It's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of intelligent technologies and services that the market has to offer, and then you've lost sight of what you are actually looking to achieve in a cloud migration project. The most reliable and stable platform is often the simplest.

Make sure you know:

  • Your objectives
  • Your requirements
  • The level of support you need

5) What If Things Go Wrong?

If you are still working with legacy apps on older hardware and tape backups, any downtime or data loss could be a disaster for your business. Have you considered how cloud hosting fits into your disaster recovery strategy?

Cloud hosting offers incredibly flexibility for backup and recovery, or disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS). The ability to use pay-as-you-go cloud capacity creates the opportunity to replicate infrastructure on a cloud platform for cost effective and rapid recovery, with critical IT systems backed up to an enterprise class secondary location.

A cloud-based approach with a systematic recovery plan provides users with a reliable and rapid means of recovering from an IT disaster, meeting compliance and governance requirements for backup and disaster recovery.

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