For any type of cloud migration to be successful, your business needs to carry out thorough analysis beforehand. Take the time to consider the impact that switching will have and prepare in the right way to reduce early teething problems. Here are some of the key considerations you need to make before migrating any platform, tool or storage to the cloud.
1. Highs and Lows of Usage
Before making the switch, analyse your environment to determine when the usage peaks are each month. This information can outline when to take advantage of the cloud’s scalability. For example, the end of the month usually sees more activity on financial systems across a business. A flexible plan will allow temporary extensions on memory or processing to cope with the workload. This can then scale back down when reporting is complete.
Knowing when usage is high is important because you can adapt the number of users and licenses you have accordingly which ultimately cuts costs. If you’ve brought on new clients, then you can scale upwards and vice versa. This is much more difficult to do with traditional systems and procedures.
2. Your Current Reliance on Legacy Systems
When migrating to the cloud, there’s often an assumption that this is the end of the road for your existing systems. Although this is true in some cases, each system needs to be analysed and considered to determine what the best course of action is.
For example, it could be that you have certain applications tied to these old systems that your business relies on. The most efficient strategy could be to keep those systems running in addition to a cloud migration of other systems or platforms.
Switching everything on to a cloud-based environment may not be best for your business. A hybrid approach could be what’s needed or most practical for now.
However, if it is imperative that you persist with legacy infrastructure, then you’ll need to increase security measures. This is because developers eventually stop releasing patches that block potential exploits.
If the best course of action is to remove hardware, then you’ll already know how important it is to do this correctly. Machines and hardware need to be disposed of in the right way so that sensitive data can’t be recovered by anyone else. An MSP can help with this process.
3. The Rest of the Infrastructure
Migrating to the cloud often exposes weaknesses and problems with your existing IT infrastructure. Before your business can benefit from the cloud, you need to consider if the office WiFi is equipped to deal with the change and how internal and external communications are affected.
The last thing you want to do is migrate to the cloud only to realise that you’re faced with other large bills to bring everything else up to speed. Slow WiFi, for instance, is a killer of productivity with staff struggling to access the data that’s now stored on the cloud.
Be sure to check the capabilities of your network connection to see if your ISP or landlord is giving you the bandwidth to cope with an office operating partly or fully on the cloud. Also, thoroughly audit your hardware to make sure it can process information quickly enough.
If an MSP is assisting with the migration, then these are some of the details they can pick up on before they become an issue.
4. Dealing With Possible Gaps in Knowledge
Understanding the cloud and how to get the most from it can be a little challenging for anyone that’s never really experienced it before. When broken down into easy-to-manage steps, switching to the cloud is relatively straightforward.
For many people, it’s not a case of starting all over again. You’ll already have a good idea of the basics. It’s just about finding the right support for the more complex steps.
There’s also the wider business to think about. Adjusting to the cloud after using bespoke systems will take a little time for some. Offering workshops and extra training where needed can ensure everyone’s up to speed as quickly as possible.
Again, if you’re working with an MSP, then you’ll benefit from their expertise. It might be your first migration but they’ve carried out plenty before for businesses like yours. They know the possible pitfalls to avoid to ensure the process is smooth and efficient.
5. How Secure is the Cloud?
There’s a misconception that the cloud is insecure and data will be at risk once everything is moved over. Sensitive data is actually far better protected once it’s on the cloud and it’s much easier for you to safeguard too.
The cloud is far more secure than legacy systems because once developers stop patching systems, they’re at risk. Cloud servers have to be continuously updated and improved as a matter of course. Their existence as a product depends on it. This means that anyone storing data or tools based on the cloud can benefit from the best protection possible.
Before migrating, consider your current security procedures. Making sure systems are updated with the latest patches and dealing with possible breaches, however, can take up a large amount of your time. Think about what you could achieve with that time back in your day.
Work with an MSP and you can also take advantage of remote out of hours IT support. Rather than security just being your responsibility, there’ll be a whole team of other experts who can identify and resolve security issues.
Out of hours support is just one of the many benefits that a partnership with an MSP brings. Download our guide now for insight into what your working life would be like with the help of an MSP.
The Benefits of Working With an MSP
Get your free copy of our MSP guide now by clicking on the link below. It outlines some of the daily challenges you face and how an MSP will make your life easier. There are lots of different MSPs offering similar services, so the guide also includes a section on finding the right MSP to suit your specific business.