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Moving to the Cloud is a Journey, Not a One-Time Event: Part 1

MyCloudIT

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One mistake many companies make is assuming moving to the cloud can happen overnight. While moving to the cloud can be a quicker process than updating your hardware, it is everything else it impacts that makes it a journey.

The cloud continues to gain popularity and more and more companies continue to make the switch. According to Forbes, 83% of enterprise workloads are expected to operate on the cloud by 2020. Keep in mind, this is everything from the public cloud to the private cloud to the hybrid cloud. It’s no surprise why companies are making the switch.

While there are numerous benefits to moving to the cloud, in Part 1 we are going to focus on the financial piece of the journey.

Financial Cost: The Challenge
In the long run, moving to the cloud can save you money by increasing efficiency, lowering capital expenses, and streamlining processes. That said, while there are benefits to moving to the cloud, you have to be willing to look at the big picture to see this because once you get started, you are going to feel as though you’re fighting an expensive uphill battle.

There are a few different types of costs you will mostly likely see regarding a migration and they are outlined below. There are some immediate costs and future costs.

  • Immediate Costs
    • Rewriting application architecture for the cloud
    • Investing in people and tools needed to migrate successfully
  • Future Costs
    • Training users on the new systems
    • Performance issues including latency, interoperability, dependencies on non-cloud apps, and downtime
    • Bandwidth costs

Despite the challenges the list seems to pose, a successful cloud migration is possible. Knowing what costs to expect and being proactive can make for a much smoother process and a better financial outcome.

Financial Cost: The Solution 
Below are a few strategies that may be helpful in implementing the cloud and being able to keep costs low.

Planning
As with anything else, planning and preparation can help put your company in a good starting position. A well thought out plan can help you manage the scope of the project and ensure you know what level of disruption will take place. Knowing this ahead of time can greatly reduce the burden on all employees.

Before you begin planning, start by understanding where your IT operations currently are and what cloud options are available and make sense. This will help identify potential issues, opportunities, and other things that may come up and can help you better prepare for them. 

Moving a Little at a Time
One mistake many companies make is trying to move everything all at once. While it sounds easy, it does take time to move everything and make sure it translates well. You can’t assume everything will move over without any issues. As much as we would like to think that, you should always plan for something to break down. Then it is less shocking when something does happen. This can also equate to additional costs if you are not expecting them.

One way to manage the move is to plan to do it in manageable pieces over a period of time. By moving a little at a time, the company not only has more flexibility and options, but it also doesn’t have to invest as much money up front. It gives the company more breathing room for the migration.

Hybrid Cloud
A full cloud migration isn’t always the best option for companies. Sometimes a hybrid cloud migration may make more sense based on the company’s needs. Keep this in mind when the decision is made. You don’t have to go all in at the start. Another decision is to decide if you want to go with the public cloud or private cloud. Both have their pros and cons but understanding the risks and benefits can help you in your decision and approach to the migration.

One way to look at this decision is based on the usage of the applications. If an application has usage spikes, then it could benefit from the public cloud because it is scalable. It would be able to meet the company’s need and help lower costs. On the other hand, if you have application with consistent usage, then it might make more sense to keep it on on-premise or in a private cloud. As you can see, there are several options based on the company’s need and the best part is you are able to have the best of both worlds and use what makes the most sense versus having to pick one option.

MyCloudIT
While there are several tools out there, MyCloudIT can provide an easy way to run multiple applications in the Microsoft Azure cloud. Instead of re-writing an application, you can deploy remote desktops or remote apps with the applications your company needs. You are able to simplify the delivery of your IT infrastructure, create a better user experience, and use IT automation to save time and money. A great example is moving QuickBooks to the cloud. We have many companies who contact us looking for a solution. They not only find exactly what they are looking for, but they have the ability to implement it in the same day, saving them time and money.

Migrating to the cloud can be a major initiative for any company. While it may bring financial challenges, those challenges can be overcome. The key is to plan ahead and be realistic with your expectations.

Check out Part 2 of Moving to the Cloud is a Journey, Not a One-Time Event. See how people impact the journey.

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