September 27, 2016
The cloud is an elusive thing. Though most companies may understand its value and recognize that it should be on their technology roadmap in the next few years, actually implementing a cloud solution is another matter entirely. There’s no “cloud switch” that can be flipped, no hardware that can be purchased that will provide a definitive, one-size-fits-all cloud solution. In reality, cloud migrations require a ton of preparation in order to be pulled off successfully. They involve the messy task of sifting through every application in your data center to find out which aspects of your IT environment can be successfully deployed in the cloud.
One of the largest barriers to cloud adoption is this preparatory step. Without a detailed plan in place, the cloud migration becomes a risky endeavor. If a mistake was made, the company could be left without an essential application.
It is for this reason that Mindsight offers our IT as a Service (ITaaS) Roadmap/Cloud Readiness Report. This consultative service pairs our consultants with your IT team to map out your cloud migration strategy. We can also provide you with the detailed analysis of your IT environment to plan your own migration. Using this consultative service as a guide, here are just a few of the steps we take to prepare you for the cloud.
Preparing for the Cloud
- Determine the Cloud Deployment Model: There are three different deployment models when considering the cloud: public, private, and hybrid cloud. At the outset of your cloud migration planning, set your sights on one of these models. Based on data privacy requirements, particular applications in use, and other factors, one deployment model or another will make the most sense for your environment. Learn more about public, private, and hybrid cloud models on our website.
- Mapping Application Dependency: Nothing in the IT environment exists in a vacuum. Nearly every application, server, or other component of your data center depends on another to function properly. Simply ripping an application from the data center, powering down the server that ran it, and launching it all into the cloud can and will create rippling issues as it disrupts the balance of the IT environment. In our ITaaS Roadmap/Cloud Readiness Report, we document and map any and all dependencies we find and take this into account for the rest of the migration plan.
- Searching for Application Alternatives: The easiest way to migrate to the cloud is to take advantage of an already existing Software as a Service (SaaS) application. Part of your migration planning should involve research on leading business-grade SaaS applications to see if they can replace any on-prem applications you currently use.
- Coordinating Hardware Lifespan with Migration Schedule: There’s no need to deactivate and discard hardware before you have completed its lifecycle. If there are servers on-prem under two years old, it would be a waste of your investment to render them useless. Therefore, a cloud migration is about scaling back hardware resources in your data center as opportunities arise. This requires a significant amount of coordination to determine what applications should migrate first, how much internal resources are necessary to support the remaining on-prem environment, and successfully walk your in-house data center back to a smaller scale.
- Planning a Migration Schedule: There are a number of reasons to migrate your environment in phases, such as making the most of your hardware lifespan, but one of the most compelling reasons is actually the simplest. It’s a lot to keep track of. By migrating in chunks, you can tackle one problem at a time and make the process more manageable.
Path to the Cloud Analysis
Migration itself is a challenge, but the success of the deployment comes from good planning. Mindsight offers a Path to the Cloud Analysis to help our clients understand the process, analyze their environment, and successfully achieve their goals. One of our senior consultants arrives on-site to perform the analysis and discuss your vision for the cloud. Then, with information in hand, our consultant assembles a detailed report which will guide you towards achieving IT as a Service.
Like what you read?
Mindsight, a Chicago IT services provider, is an extension of your team. Our culture is built on transparency and trust, and our team is made up of extraordinary people – the kinds of people you would hire. We have one of the largest expert-level engineering teams delivering the full spectrum of IT services and solutions, from cloud to infrastructure, collaboration to contact center. Our highly-certified engineers and process-oriented excellence have certainly been key to our success. But what really sets us apart is our straightforward and honest approach to every conversation, whether it is for an emerging business or global enterprise. Our customers rely on our thought leadership, responsiveness, and dedication to solving their toughest technology challenges.