Roadmap to Move to the Cloud

Roadmap to Move to the Cloud

Migrating to the cloud can be intricate, time consuming, and delicate, especially when you have hundreds or thousands of existing workloads to move. Make your journey quick and smooth by planning ahead and using tried-and-true best practices. To help you get started, Nuvodia has created a quick guide that outlines six basic phases of a successful cloud migration and is your road-map to the cloud.

What is a Cloud Migration Strategy?

A cloud migration strategy is how you and your business move your current workloads into your cloud platform of choice. For example, you can move workloads into the cloud without making any changes, you can make small optimizations to the underlying code, or you can rebuild your entire workload altogether. No strategy is better or worse than another; it just depends on what your organization needs.

  1. Assess Your Applications and Workloads

    Assessing applications and workloads for cloud migration readiness allows organizations to determine what applications and data can and cannot be readily moved to a cloud environment and what delivery models (public, private, or hybrid) can be supported. Alternatively, you might start by determining which applications you do not want to move to the cloud initially. This assessment will not only result in difficult decisions, but also in prioritization of the applications. Having identified which applications or workloads are candidates to be migrated to the cloud, the next question is how ready these applications are to be migrated. If you or your organization needs assistance in this step, please feel free to reach out for technical support from the Nuvodia staff.

  2. Build a Business Case

    Developing a business case for migrating applications to cloud computing requires an overall cloud computing strategy, including specific information that describes the current state and demonstrates the advantages of cloud computing to not only reduce costs, but to deliver meaningful business value. High level value propositions for cloud computing include the shift of capital expenditures to operational expenses, cost savings, faster speed of deployment, elasticity, etc. Within the context of an enterprise strategy for cloud computing, individual business problems with existing applications that cloud computing can potentially address need to be identified, and specific business justification must prove that cloud computing is the right strategic alternative.

  3. Develop a Technical Approach

    Broadly speaking, the potential target service models for the migration of an existing application may be a combination of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), or others. If the existing application is a packaged one, there is potential to move it to SaaS, either with the vendor of the software package or with a cloud provider specializing in hosting of the packaged application. To migrate an application to IaaS, the requirements on the cloud service itself tend to be lower. The entire software stack is migrated: the application code itself, plus any supporting code it requires – including the underlying operating system.

  4. Adopt a Flexible Integration Model

    It is common for applications to have several points of integration with both internal and external systems, providers, etc. Such integrations respond to various needs, including but not limited to:

    • Performing an end-to-end workflow that crosses the boundaries between multiple business capabilities or systems.
    • Sharing of common master data between applications.
    • Single sign-on across multiple applications and systems.
    • Monitoring an application in the cloud using a suite of on-premises IT tools.
    • API management – to support flexibility, interoperability and portability.

    Migration to the cloud increases the likelihood of such connections. These connections can be classified into:

    • Cloud to Cloud: newly migrated applications integrating with other applications, services or providers that are also in the cloud.
    • Cloud to On-Premises: The application migrated to the cloud integrating with an application on premises or vice versa.
  5. Address Requirements

    Compliance, security, and privacy are key issues that concern cloud service customers the most, and data residency has been added to the mix in the last few years. Depending on the economic sector, these may be just above or below concerns about availability and performance as highest priority. At the same time, cloud service customers should remember that many of the compliance, security, and privacy concerns raised by cloud computing have existed since the first forms of IT outsourcing were introduced. Compliance concerns include those imposed by external entities such as governments or other regulatory bodies, but can also be imposed by the customer’s own internal IT or legal departments.

  6. Manage the Application Cloud Migration Process

    Finally, having thoroughly defined on paper the why, what, and how of the application migration project, Nuvodia can help plan, execute and manage the actual application migration. Executing a migration is a complex and delicate project, and as such it should have a formal project plan and a skilled project manager. The migration plan, like all project plans, should track tasks, durations, resources, costs, and risks. In general, it is recommended to conduct a pilot for one or two of the suitable applications, test thoroughly, document the lessons learned, and gather customer feedback so that improvements can be made before going live. Once the application migration process has proved successful and the required technical cloud computing and cloud migration skills have been developed, migration of more business critical applications can be considered.

Hybrid Cloud

A hybrid cloud is a computing environment that combines a public cloud and a private cloud by allowing data and applications to be shared between them. When computing and processing demand fluctuates, hybrid cloud computing gives businesses the ability to seamlessly scale their on-premises infrastructure up to the public cloud to handle any overflow. Organizations gain the flexibility and computing power of the public cloud for basic and non-sensitive computing tasks, while keeping business-critical applications and data on-premises, safely behind a company firewall.

Using a hybrid cloud not only allows companies to scale computing resources, it also eliminates the need to make massive capital expenditures to handle short-term spikes in demand as well as when the business needs to free up local resources for more sensitive data or applications. Companies will pay only for resources they temporarily use instead of having to purchase, program, and maintain additional resources and equipment that could remain idle over long periods of time. Hybrid cloud computing is a best of all possible worlds platform, delivering all the benefits of cloud computing—flexibility, scalability, and cost efficiencies—with the lowest possible risk of data exposure.

Citations

By Josh Andrade (Nuvodia, Marketing Specialist)

Last Modified: September 15, 2020