1. Conduct an audit of your current systems
Do you know your company’s architecture inside and out? If not, you will need to address the issue and establish a detailed map of the existing structure and everything that surrounds it: costs, storage, server, maintenance staff, etc. This is essential in order to build a solid business project and calculate your ROI. In addition, this step will allow you to identify your technical failures. This will eliminate the risks of moving to the cloud.
2. Determine your goals
Determining your priorities is an essential step before moving to the cloud. Is the goal of the migration to increase agility, improve security or automate some of your employees’ ancillary tasks to allow them to focus on the company’s primary business? Depending on your priorities, you may be able to start by migrating less important tasks, which will help you test the cloud’s performance and your IT partner’s responsiveness before migrating strategic workloads.
3. Check that your licences and applications can migrate to the cloud
Not all licences and applications can be included in a migration to the cloud. This is the case for licences purchased in “on-premises” mode, highly specialized business applications or those written specifically for certain system architectures, or partitioned databases. It is often possible to convert an on-premise application to cloud mode by purchasing the mobility licence sold by the publisher, but in the other cases, migration is not possible.
4. Choose a cloud tailored to your needs
Before selecting a Cloud provider, consider the performance levels required by your applications. In particular, you should consider the CPU, RAM, DISK and NETWORK metrics to determine the cloud you need. Your IT service provider can conduct this audit beforehand.
It’s also important to evaluate the reliability and capacities of the service provider to which you plan to entrust your organization’s applications and data. Here are a few crucial points to consider: the data storage location in Canada or internationally, the data management responsibility, the security and reliability of the provider’s internet connection, the time required to restore service in the event of a breakdown, and the security levels implemented. You must also consider security features: the physical security of the data centre, virus protection, and intrusion prevention. Strong service level agreements (or SLAs) are essential to the safe migration of your company’s data and applications to the cloud.
5. Plan your migration
After carefully following the steps above, it’s time to develop a concrete migration plan for the targeted applications. It’s important for the plan to take the following into account:
- Minimal downtime
- Order in which the applications will be migrated
- Timeframes and tracking of key performance indicators (KPI) that define a successful migration
Establishing a surveillance plan and monitoring all of your actions is also essential to help you identify and solve potential problems that may occur in this new environment.
6. Entrust a specialist with your migration
If your company doesn’t possess the in-house expertise to perform the migration to the cloud and monitor the implementation of this new business model, you should select an experienced partner that will not only be able to steer you toward a cloud solution perfectly tailored to your needs, but also support you throughout the migration process and beyond.
Before making the switch, take the time to define your needs, build an experienced team or find the right partners. You should also take the time to plan the various steps of the process. That way, you are sure to meet all the conditions of a successful migration.