The adoption of public cloud computing services by businesses of all sizes shows no signs of slowing down. Companies that don't migrate some of their workloads to public cloud service providers are now at a competitive disadvantage.
The public cloud model is one in which third party service providers make a range of IT resources available to multiple clients via the Internet. Popular IT resources consumed in this service-based model include cloud storage, applications, and database management systems.
The main benefits of the public cloud are lower capital costs, effortless scalability of services, and greater resistance to outages or disasters. However, a significant barrier to public cloud migration is the fear that the complexities of the migration process will outweigh any perceived benefits of public cloud services. Here are five tips to help ensure a smooth public cloud migration for your business.
It is a poor strategy to choose a cloud provider based on the popularity of its services. The range of cloud providers and services to choose from can make it a daunting prospect to pick between them, however, it is definitely worth spending time researching multiple vendors.
Due diligence ensures that your business ends up with the right provider and the right services. You need to perform research under a number of different categories, including availability, storage capacity, disaster recovery, vendor support, accessibility, and data security. Draw up a checklist of benchmarks a cloud service must meet and choose the service provider that ticks the most boxes.
With your due diligence performed and a relationship established with your chosen cloud vendor, it's wise to migrate your workloads in phases. The idea of this phased migration is to establish a proof-of-concept before migrating your main workloads to the public cloud.
The proof-of-concept migration should enable you to make significant conclusions about whether your chosen cloud setup can support the main workload you want to move to the cloud. In the case of a database, for example, you could initially migrate a subset of a much larger dataset to the cloud to see how everything goes.
With a proof-of-concept established, you can move on to creating a cloud governance policy. The governance policy is an important document that clearly sets out principles for using cloud systems under the areas of security, compliance, and monitoring.
The governance policy should also define roles and responsibilities in terms of management of cloud systems.
Moving to the cloud without running an employee training program first is a recipe for confusion, frustration, and wasted time. It's imperative that employees first get used to using cloud systems before you go live with a production workload.
Run a dedicated employee cloud training program that teaches the fundamentals of using your chosen provider's services. Don't worry if the training program takes up to a full working day--it'll save time and money in the long run.
The public cloud model gets its name from the fact that public cloud users access services via the Internet. However, it's becoming increasingly popular for public cloud providers to offer dedicated virtual private connections to their customers.
Employee resistance to cloud migrations often emerges when they find out that the speed at which they can access services is reduced compared to on-premise infrastructure. Choosing a dedicated network connection directly to the cloud provider can bridge the performance gap and reduce employee anxieties about latency. Conclusion
Before you move to the public cloud, make sure you have a clearly planned migration strategy. When drawing up a cloud migration strategy, keep the tips in this article at the forefront of your plan and you'll increase the chances of a smooth migration.