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How to tackle six common cloud migration challenges

According to the 2020 Data Attack Surface Report, by 2025, half of the world's data — about 200 zettabytes, or 200 trillion gigabytes' worth — will be in the cloud.

Business is expected to account for a significant proportion of that volume, but many companies have yet to begin their cloud migration. In late 2021, only 17% of technology leaders surveyed by TELUS International said they had migrated at least half of their current infrastructure to the cloud. Meanwhile, 51% said they anticipated having it done by the end of 2022.

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Executive survey results: Cloud migration in 2022

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Cloud migration — the process of moving digital assets such as data, applications and other business elements to a cloud computing environment — can be a resource-intensive process. Companies that have completed the task, however, have experienced major benefits.

For instance, cloud contact centers enable brands to centralize customer information so that agents don't have to move between multiple systems and platforms when supporting customers. Additionally, the cloud helps companies scale quickly and with agility, boosting operational efficiency and maximizing productivity in the process.

For businesses leaders to reap the full benefits of the cloud, though, they must have a robust migration strategy in place. A proper plan makes it easier to side-step or overcome the most common cloud migration obstacles.

Six common cloud migration challenges

With careful planning, and the right cloud migration partner, the following six common migration challenges can be avoided.

1. Lack of internal resources: Lacking in-house expertise can cause significant roadblocks. Not having professionals with cloud migration skills on hand can lead to errors that result in spending more money, rather than saving it.

2. Not understanding digital trends: While moving to the cloud requires some know-how at the start, it becomes easier and less costly to manage data assets in the cloud over time — assuming you can keep on top of digital trends. Tech strategies and skills evolve fast, and it's difficult to keep up with the latest insights if you don't have resources and expertise at the ready.

3. Taking an all-or-nothing approach: It's a mistake to think you must migrate all your applications and IT infrastructure to the cloud all at once. Some businesses worry that the cloud can't support their entire workload. They then allow that belief to stall their efforts and keep them from beginning a cloud migration. But it doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing approach. In some cases, a hybrid strategy that carefully selects the right platform for each application is best.

4. Getting started too quickly: Cloud migration best practices dictate that companies shouldn't start a migration before fully understanding what they're moving, and why. Beginning your migration before your organization is ready may stall your progress right out of the gate, ultimately costing you more money than predicted.

5. Taking a one-size-fits-all approach: Not every application will perform best in a cloud environment — and, in terms of cloud environments, not everything works best in a public cloud. In fact, many organizations today still have a hybrid cloud infrastructure, opting for a mixture of public, private and hybrid clouds. With that in mind, figure out a cloud migration strategy based on your individual business needs, then determine what cloud services are available to support you (e.g. infrastructure-as-a-service, platform-as-a-service, etc.).

6. No adoption strategy: Save time by getting executive and senior management buy-in from the start. It's not uncommon for existing managers and employees to resist change, so ensuring department leaders endorse a cloud migration will help you devise the right adoption strategy.

Cloud migration best practices

Understanding common cloud migration challenges and adopting best practices are two sides of the same coin. Building a cloud migration blueprint that integrates leading strategy, processes and tools is another key component of success. Here are a few best practices to consider as part of your overall plan.

Set objectives and communicate accordingly: Before you create your cloud migration strategy, know exactly what business objectives you're trying to achieve. Identify your team's concerns so you can address them and keep employees feeling positive about the migration.

Carefully map out all aspects of the migration and start slowly: Know which apps will work better in the public cloud versus private or hybrid clouds. Start with applications that are relatively easy to migrate and learn from those processes before tackling more challenging parts of the project.

Consider the unique requirements of your particular organization: The pay-per-usage public cloud is highly scalable but isn't always the right choice for a sensitive workload. Private clouds suit companies with the budgets to run an on-premises cloud tailored to their needs. A hybrid cloud can let you get the best of both worlds.

Create a cloud transformation budget: Forecasting cloud migration costs accurately can be critical to its success. You'll have to consider how many assets you are moving, cloud infrastructure costs, how long the migration will take, expert consultant costs and post-migration costs such as application testing, administration, training and labor.

Benefits of outsourcing to an experienced cloud partner

Every cloud migration requires an individually-tailored, comprehensive plan designed to meet the organization's specific business goals. An experienced cloud partner can help you achieve this goal. Our team of experts will work with you to understand business and IT needs, map your transformation goals, assess your workloads, evaluate cloud readiness, plot an effective migration strategy and deploy your applications to the right cloud platform. Reach out to our digital IT specialiste to accelerate your cloud adoption today.

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