Top 5 challenges faced when migrating to the cloud

Firstserv’s Sebastian Tyc outlines the risks of cloud migration and how to best approach them

Cloud adoption has its challenges but is vital to protect against cyber-crime. Experts like Firstserv guide you through the process ensuring a smooth transition.

Cloud computing is seeing an inexorable rise, as organisations throughout the world continue to transition more services online.

The trend towards hybrid working, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, has resulted in a huge increase in cloud migration. Gartner research and consulting services firm recently forecast worldwide public cloud end-user spending to grow 21.7% to $597.3 billion in 2023.

At Firstserv we have enabled many organisations to realise their cloud ambitions using our Cloud Adoption Framework. 
We springboard workloads safely from legacy on-premises data centres to cutting-edge public, private and hybrid cloud environments.

Using the Cloud Adoption Framework, Firstserv seamlessly navigates the challenges faced by organisations taking the plunge.

1. Data security and compliance risk

As organisations move to the cloud, data security and regulatory compliance are major concerns. Data and applications hosted on the cloud must be secured at the same level as in on-premises data centres. Some cloud deployment models are better suited to this than others.

For example, in public cloud deployments, a company shares servers and other infrastructure with other cloud customers. Vulnerabilities in the underlying servers or the isolation of the virtual machines (VMs) hosted on these servers could result in data leakage or other security incidents.

Additionally, an organisation may not have visibility into where its data and applications are hosted, which can be problematic for some data privacy laws such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

In addition to managing these risks, Firstserv will carry out a Cloud Assessment to evaluate workloads that are redundant, or can be merged, ensuring more optimised costs in the future. Migrating to the cloud is more cost-effective than the continued maintenance and management of a legacy on-premises infrastructure.

2. Unnecessary Project spend

The most common mistake preventing your organisation from fully reaping the benefits of the cloud is the lack of clear business objectives behind the move, and/or a good migration plan.

Clients approach us after attempting migration in-house, having already undertaken a great deal of work. In these cases, we often must go back to square one, helping with the formulation of business goals and rebuilding migration strategies from scratch.

A strong strategic plan ensures that you can easily navigate the transition and avoid analysis paralysis during later stages. This is especially important given the variety of choices along the way; starting from whether you opt for private, public, or hybrid cloud infrastructure to choosing between Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), or Software as a Service (SaaS) models.

Carefully planning each phase of the migration ensures you make the right choices, arrive at your target, and avoid unnecessary spend.

3. skills gap

One of the primary challenges of cloud migration is finding people who have the skills to manage an effective migration. Despite the many benefits of cloud computing, the complexity of the project stops many organisations in their tracks.

Competition for migration experts has intensified. Unfortunately, the demand for cloud experts exceeds the supply, at least for now.

Firstserv’s team fills your organisation’s skills gap, enabling a seamless transition to the cloud, without having to upskill or increase, and later potentially decrease, your current headcount.

4. Migration complexity

Cloud migration involves moving data storage and applications from on-premises environments to cloud infrastructure. Often, this is accomplished in stages to ensure that one step is completed entirely successfully before moving on.

If your organisation has a complex existing IT architecture, then developing and executing on a cloud migration strategy may be difficult.

Certain systems may need to be collocated, and a complex architecture may make it difficult to identify and document interdependencies and develop a phased strategy for moving certain components or systems to the cloud.

Firstserv’s experience in providing managed solutions and secure cloud hosting including disaster recovery, managed backups, and server monitoring ensures the security of your system during the migration project and beyond. 

5. adoption resistance

When it comes to cloud adoption, the biggest challenge is not technology but people. We all tend to resist change and cloud migration brings with it a lot of change and disruption. Your team needs to adapt and change their working processes.

Good people management is extremely important to ensure successful migration. A properly thought-out change management plan can assist in this transitional journey.

Buy in from the top level is crucial, heavily influencing employee engagement and adoption. By demonstrating support, excitement, and value for the new project the leadership team will help disseminate these values to the rest of the team.

Constant communication encourages the workforce to adapt and progress. Investing in a strong onboarding program and employing experts like Firstserv to train and support employees will ensure employee acceptance faster.

embrace innovation

Moving to the cloud is not a challenge but rather an opportunity to make existing business processes more agile and innovative. Firstly, take stock of all the infrastructure components, business processes and in-house expertise at your disposal. Then, build a strategy that encompasses all the needs of your organisation on your cloud migration journey.

Firstserv can help develop and execute a cloud migration strategy that makes the most sense from the standpoint of your own business objectives.

Based on your actual and target digital maturity levels, our experts customise your migration program for the processes, people, and technologies within your organisation.

Book a free one-hour consultation to see how Firstserv can help you migrate to the cloud at a faster pace and achieve optimisation at scale.

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