Cloud Migration: How to Overcome Roadblocks and Move Forward 

images 6

Cloud computing has been a significant trend for the past ten years. In 2015, it saw triple-digit annual growth. By the end of 2019, the biggest cloud providers grew at a slower rate, just 31% annually. This rate was expected to decrease in 2020 and 2021 as the industry matures, but cloud growth still surpassed many other sectors.

In 2020, the cloud market grew faster than in 2019 despite a severe economic downturn. The growth was due to increased demand from the pandemic, lockdowns, and the shift to remote work.

In the present day, every company utilizes at least one public or private cloud. By the year 2025, 85% of organizations will adopt a cloud-first approach.

Global organizations are getting ready to migrate various workloads in the coming year as their cloud strategies evolve. That includes areas like advanced analytics, business intelligence, data analytics, server virtualization (VMs), systems management, and orchestration (server, storage, and internal private cloud), virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and mobility management, CRM/sales and marketing, and enterprise resource planning (ERP).

However, many businesses are still delaying their cloud migration plans due to common fears of modernization. Let’s explore these roadblocks and ways to successfully overcome them.

Roadblock 1: Insufficient Technical Expertise

The lack of in-house expertise is a major barrier to cloud migration. Cloud technology is evolving rapidly, and as more organizations adopt it, experts are in high demand. In the USA, nearly 40% of respondents admit a lack of skills to manage cloud applications effectively, emphasizing the need for talent. Finding and retaining skilled internal experts can impede the transformation.

How to jump on the opportunity

To address this challenge, consider outsourcing cloud migration to an experienced vendor. Collaborate with your Project Team and Subject Matter Experts for a smooth transition. Simultaneously, foster a culture of continuous learning to retain and recognize top talent in your long-term cloud strategy.

Roadblock 2: High Costs

Cloud migration requires money. That can pose a significant challenge for your organization. You may have already invested in on-premises technology, providing clarity to your budget. Moving to the cloud might appear to be an extra and unnecessary expense.

How to jump on the opportunity

Compare migration costs with ongoing on-premise expenses. On-premise servers require budgeting for storage, power, maintenance, expertise, and warranties. If your organization expands, you’ll need more servers; if it contracts, the allocated IT budget for infrastructure may go to waste.

Cloud migration provides flexibility in server capacity. Pay only for what you use, and let your cloud provider handle maintenance and upgrades. Monthly or quarterly subscriptions include infrastructure and hardware costs, improving budget control. Additionally, cut costs by reallocating your workforce. In total, 79% of IT professionals reported saving costs with the cloud.

Keep in mind that you don’t need a massive budget or complete cloud migration for a solution. Modernize complex on-premises apps step by step. Start with smaller, defined projects to conserve resources. As you succeed, tackle more complexity and scope.

Finally, utilize Azure’s TCO calculator to plan your migration project’s costs and savings effectively.

Roadblock 3: Crucial Downtimes

Organizations require 24/7 data access, and any interruption poses a problem. Tech failures prompt disaster recovery, impacting the business. On-premise servers may seem manageable, while the cloud might seem less controllable. However, on-premise systems still require servicing and upgrades, causing unavoidable downtime.

How to jump on the opportunity

Plan your migration over the weekend or on low-activity days to avoid downtime. Keep the old software as a backup until migration success is confirmed.

Ensure a reliable internet connection, review backup and recovery plans, encrypt your data, and enhance cybersecurity for a seamless migration. Not all cloud providers are the same; inquire about their 24/7 support, guaranteed uptimes, and upgrade management to prevent disruptions.

Roadblock 4: Security Risks

These fears are understandable, especially in domains like Healthcare, HIPAA, and GDPR, which demand extremely high data security.

Moving to the cloud may feel like losing data privacy and control. According to IBM research, 32% of respondents consider security a top concern, with over a quarter seeing it as a barrier to cloud business goals. The main challenges are data governance (49%) and cybersecurity (47%) for integrating business into the cloud.

How to jump on the opportunity

Ensure your cloud provider addresses concerns and meets your needs. Ask them:

  • What data safety measures are in place against security threats?
  • How can you help ensure regulatory compliance for our organization?
  • Do you provide essential IT expertise and support during problems?

To cut data security risks, prep in-house. Over 90% of financial, telecom, and government organizations use security tools like confidential computing and multi-factor authentication. In your cloud strategy, also review employee cybersecurity training, session time-outs, and role-based access.

Your cloud vendor can guide you in adopting best practices for data security, so choosing the right provider is crucial. For instance, cloud tech leaders like Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure prioritize data security, using cutting-edge cybersecurity software to protect customer data.

To summarize

On-premises hosting and data centers may waste money today. Cloud technologies provide benefits like pay-as-you-go pricing and easy scalability. Moreover, cloud-based systems are highly resilient to downtime when compared to on-premises setups. By overcoming common fears and seizing cloud opportunities, organizations can propel their digital transformation forward.