5 Steps for a Successful On-Premise to Cloud Migration - V2 Cloud

5 Steps for a Successful On-Premise to Cloud Migration

.

Overview – Clouds can provide valuable information. In fact, numerous businesses from all industries are already using Cloud technologies. However, cloud migrations occur to varying degrees. Not everyone with a migration strategy can transfer data to cloud computing quickly. Many organizations adopt iterative cloud migration based primarily on business and technical needs.

Migrating your business data from on-premise to the cloud is a big move. In the era of cloud computing, businesses seeking this switch stand at the edge of a major transformation that promises operational efficiencies and the redefinition of their technological landscape.

As of 2023, investments in cloud infrastructure surpass 60% of all IT infrastructure spending worldwide, showcasing a pivotal shift towards flexible cloud resources to boost efficiency and productivity. This significant adoption rate underscores the cloud’s role in enhancing the bottom and top lines globally, with over 80% of organizations reporting enhanced cost efficiency through cloud deployments.

It’s not merely about moving data or applications to the cloud but embracing infrastructure as a service and strategic transformation that aligns with the broader trends of digital efficiency, cost management, and technological adaptability.

But how can your team plan and execute the on-prem to cloud migration efficiently? This article will guide you through the step-by-step to implement a successful transition to the cloud environment. From the stakeholder buy-in to getting the cloud platform up and running, we’ll provide all the tools you need for your migration process.

Why migrate data from on-premise to the cloud?

Migrating data from on-premise systems to the cloud is a strategic move that positions businesses at the forefront of technological advancement and operational efficiency. This transition is driven by the cloud’s transformative capabilities in data management, offering a plethora of benefits over traditional on-premises setups.

Here are the main benefits your team will observe shortly after the migration:

Enhanced accessibility for a distributed workforce

Today’s global economy requires businesses to increasingly operate on cloud-based platforms to cater to a geographically dispersed workforce. Cloud services ensure that employees have seamless access to critical applications and documents, irrespective of their location.

This omnipresent access facilitates a collaborative work environment and supports the continuity of business operations across diverse geographical boundaries.

Dynamic scalability to meet business demand

Businesses often experience fluctuating software and hardware demands, which can span from minutes to months. Cloud computing addresses this challenge with unmatched elasticity, allowing for the seamless scaling of compute and storage resources in response to business needs.

This dynamic scalability not only ensures that businesses can handle surges in demand efficiently but also optimizes cost by scaling down resources when they are not needed, flexibility that traditional on-premise solutions cannot match.

Improved performance and organizational agility

The shift to cloud computing heralds significant improvements in application performance, data quality, and operational agility.

Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) leverage a global network of data centers, reducing latency and enhancing user experience. This infrastructure advantage allows businesses to be more agile, enabling rapid adaptation to changing market demands.

Cloud adoption facilitates the deployment of new Software as a Service (SaaS) products, enhances the development and delivery of in-house applications, and ultimately accelerates innovation.

Disaster recovery and business continuity

Leveraging cloud technology for data storage inherently multiplies the resilience of business operations against unforeseen disruptions. By distributing data across a network of geographically dispersed servers, the cloud introduces an inherent redundancy and backup capability into existing systems.

This strategic approach to disaster recovery capitalizes on the cloud’s robust infrastructure to offer a seamless continuity plan, underpinning a business’s ability to remain operational and responsive, even in the face of unexpected challenges.

Different Types of Cloud Migration Process

The choice of cloud migration tools and strategies depends on the particular business requirements you choose.

  • Is this the company’s first migration?
  • Do businesses require data transfers from the cloud?
  • How much are we going to need for our data?

Answering these questions can assist you in selecting the most efficient migration plan possible.

However, it’s not just about the quantity of data but understanding the types of applications, the interdependencies, and the intended future state in the cloud that guide your choice among the four predominant cloud migration strategies:

Rehosting (“Lift-and-Shift")

Often the starting point for migration projects, rehosting involves moving applications to the cloud without modification. It’s favored for its speed and simplicity, particularly for companies looking to migrate quickly with minimal disruption.

Refactoring / Re-architecting

This approach is chosen when businesses seek to optimize their applications to leverage cloud-native features. It’s more complex and involves reimagining how applications are architected and developed, usually to improve scalability, and performance, or to add new features.

Replatforming

Tweaking certain aspects of your applications to fit into the new cloud environment without changing the core architecture falls under re-platforming. It strikes a balance between rehosting and refactoring by providing the opportunity to make use of cloud efficiencies without a complete overhaul.

Repurchasing

Moving to a different product that is cloud-native, often opting for a SaaS solution, falls under this category. This strategy might be considered when the existing on-premises solution is outdated or too costly to maintain.

Single Cloud Or Multi-Cloud Approach

When transitioning to the cloud, companies are faced with the choice of adopting a single cloud provider or leveraging a multi-cloud approach. Each strategy has its distinct advantages and considerations.

Single Cloud Strategy

Opting for a single cloud provider simplifies the management and integration of cloud services. It offers a straightforward operational model, potentially lowering the learning curve for your IT team and reducing administrative overhead.

A single provider can often meet a wide range of IT needs, offering a cohesive ecosystem of services that work seamlessly together.

This approach can lead to optimized performance and potentially better pricing models due to consolidated spending. However, it might limit your flexibility and bargaining power, potentially making your business more vulnerable to provider-specific outages or changes in service terms.

Multi-Cloud Strategy

Conversely, a multi-cloud approach involves using services from several cloud providers. This strategy enhances flexibility, allowing businesses to choose best-of-breed services tailored to specific requirements, whether for cost efficiency, performance, geographic reach, or compliance with regulations.

Multi-cloud environments can also increase resilience against outages, ensuring business continuity by distributing workloads across different cloud platforms.

However, this increased flexibility comes with complexity in management and integration, requiring robust governance models and possibly leading to higher operational costs due to the need for more specialized skills.

Infographic showing the differences between single versus multicloud approaches.
Single cloud vs Multicloud. Source: Synoptek

5 steps for a Successful Cloud Migration from On-Premises Infrastructure

It’s not the same migration project as the one in the first instance. However, in general, these steps should help an organization move smoothly between on-premise and cloud-based solutions.

1. Assess your current data environment

Starting the cloud migration process requires a thorough understanding of your current data and application environment. This foundational knowledge not only highlights potential roadblocks but also ensures that your next data migration project is precisely tailored to meet both current and future needs.

Properly sizing your database and ensuring adequate capacity and storage post-migration is crucial to avoid bottlenecks and performance degradation. The path to successful cloud adoption is multifaceted, with several critical considerations:

Defining business goals and objectives

Identifying your overarching business goals is the first step in the cloud migration journey.

Whether you aim to reduce operational costs, enhance system performance, achieve greater scalability, or improve business agility, a clear set of objectives will guide your choice of cloud solutions and migration strategies.

Evaluating the current on-premise assets

A detailed assessment of your existing on-premise infrastructure is essential. This inventory should encompass all applications, data, workloads, and other critical IT resources.

A comprehensive understanding of these assets facilitates a more strategic migration plan, enabling you to decide which components to move to the cloud and in what sequence.

Exploring the cloud computing models

Cloud computing is not a monolithic concept; it offers a spectrum of deployment models, each with its unique advantages and considerations. Evaluating these options requires a careful analysis of factors such as cost implications, security requirements, performance needs, and regulatory compliance.

The main cloud models include public and private clouds, hybrid clouds, and community clouds, along with the emerging paradigms of multi-cloud and distributed cloud strategies.

2. Determine your timeline and budget

Establishing a clear and comprehensive timeline and budget is critical for a successful transition from on-premise infrastructure to the cloud. Using visual planning tools, such as timeline creators, can significantly aid in mapping out the migration process.

This approach allows you to anticipate both the immediate and long-term financial implications, alongside the necessary time investment.

Key factors to consider:

  1. Upfront Costs: These include expenses related to migrating applications and data to the cloud, any new hardware or software that may be required, and potential training programs for your team to familiarize them with the new cloud environment.
  2. Ongoing Expenses: Monthly or annual cloud service fees, additional costs for data storage, and charges for extra bandwidth or services as your business scales. Remember, the cloud offers scalability, but this flexibility can impact costs.
  3. Time Investment: Consider the complexity of your existing infrastructure, the volume of data to be migrated, and the readiness of your team. Migration projects can range from a few months to over a year, depending on these and other factors.
  4. Budgeting for Success: Ensure your budget accounts for both expected and unforeseen expenses. A contingency fund for unexpected challenges can help keep your migration on track without compromising other business operations.

3. Execute the plan and track the progress

Executing your cloud migration plan marks a significant phase where strategy turns into action.

Begin with transitioning your development and testing environments to the cloud. This preliminary step is crucial for several reasons, but mainly:

  • Familiarization: It acquaints your team with the cloud’s operational dynamics, offering a hands-on experience that’s invaluable for understanding the nuances of cloud-based operations.
  • Testing Rigor: Migrating these environments first provides a safe space to thoroughly test applications in cloud conditions, ensuring they perform as expected without impacting your live production environment.

As you proceed with the migration, maintaining a vigilant watch over both the migration’s progress and its financial impact is essential.

Utilize project management tools to monitor the migration’s pace against the planned timeline. Regular updates from your migration team can help identify bottlenecks or deviations from the plan early on.

Keep a detailed record of expenditures as you migrate. Cloud costs can be dynamic; by monitoring these expenses in real time, you can identify trends and make necessary adjustments to avoid budget overruns.

4. Manage your cloud infrastructure and applications

Now that you’re running in the cloud, you need to manage your infrastructure and applications. This includes:

  • Routine Management: Monitor systems, apply patches, and conduct backups to mitigate risks and ensure continuity.
  • Performance and SLAs: Use tools to monitor application performance against SLAs. Adjust infrastructure or application design as needed for optimization.
  • Cost Control: Monitor cloud expenditure closely. Employ cost management tools and practices to avoid overspending. Regularly adjust resource use to align with demand, leveraging a FinOps approach for balanced financial and operational efficiency.

Effective cloud management ensures operational excellence, aligns costs with usage, and maintains application performance to meet business needs.

5. Monitor and optimize performance

The last step in your on-premise to cloud migration is monitoring and optimizing performance. This includes monitoring your applications for errors, your database for slow queries, and your infrastructure for capacity issues.

It involves:

  • Error Tracking: Keep an eye on application errors to identify and resolve issues promptly.
  • Query Performance: Monitor your database for slow queries that can impact performance, optimizing them for efficiency.
  • Capacity Management: Assess infrastructure capacity regularly to ensure it meets demand without overprovisioning.

For optimal cloud performance:

  • Scale Smartly: Consider both horizontal (adding more machines) and vertical (upgrading existing hardware) scaling based on the application’s needs.
  • Cache Effectively: Utilize cloud-based caching to enhance data retrieval speeds.
  • Leverage CDN: Employ a Content Delivery Network (CDN) to reduce latency and speed up content delivery to users worldwide.

Optimizing for the cloud not only ensures your applications run smoothly but also enhances user experience and controls operational costs.

Screenshot of Pingdom's page speed monitoring tool for cloud performance testing.
You can use a testing tool like Pingdom.

Common Cloud Migration Challenges

Migrating to the cloud, while offering significant benefits, presents a series of challenges that organizations must navigate. These hurdles, if not properly managed, can complicate the transition process and impact the overall success of the migration.

Check the most common cloud migration challenges your team might face:

1. Inadequate on-premise to cloud migration preparation

Organizations often underestimate the effort required for on-premise to cloud migration.

To avoid this, you need to thoroughly assess your current environment before starting your transition. This will help you understand what needs to be done and how much work is involved.

You also need to have a clear understanding of your application landscape. This includes identifying all of your applications, understanding how they work, and determining which ones can be migrated to the cloud.

2. Lack of cloud computing skills and expertise

A notable barrier to effective cloud migration is the shortage of in-house cloud computing expertise.

Building or acquiring cloud skills within your team is essential. This can be achieved through targeted training programs, hiring new talent with cloud experience, or consulting with cloud migration specialists.

Ensuring your team is equipped with the necessary cloud knowledge and skills is critical for a smooth transition.

3. Inability to accurately forecast costs

Predicting expenses in the cloud’s pay-as-you-go model poses a significant challenge, with organizations struggling to estimate monthly costs accurately. This requires a deep understanding of cloud pricing models and monitoring tools to track and manage cloud spend.

Regularly reviewing and adjusting cloud usage in line with budget expectations helps mitigate cost-related surprises.

4. Lack of data governance and control

Maintaining governance and control over data in the cloud environment is a critical concern due to the shared responsibility model of cloud computing.

To safeguard data and applications, it’s imperative to implement stringent security measures, including comprehensive policies, access controls, and regular audits of cloud resources.

5. Downtime during on-premise to cloud migration

The migration process often necessitates periods of downtime, which can disrupt business operations. Planning and executing a migration strategy that minimizes downtime is essential.

This may involve phased migrations, using temporary workarounds, or scheduling migrations during off-peak hours to lessen the impact on operations.

How to Choose the Best Option Among Multiple Cloud Providers?

Selecting the optimal cloud provider is a critical decision that impacts your organization’s cloud migration success and operational efficiency. V2 Cloud stands out as a strong candidate for businesses planning their move from on-premise to the cloud.

Ease of Data Migration

V2 Cloud simplifies the data migration process with its FTP server capabilities, enabling straightforward transfers of data to your Virtual Machine (VM) in the cloud. This feature is particularly beneficial for organizations looking to migrate large volumes of data efficiently and securely.

Secure and Accessible Storage

Data security and accessibility are paramount for businesses transitioning to the cloud. V2 Cloud offers secure storage solutions that ensure your data is protected against unauthorized access and data breaches. Simultaneously, it provides easy accessibility, ensuring that your team can access critical data from anywhere, fostering flexibility and productivity.

When evaluating cloud providers, consider how these features align with your specific business needs and migration goals. V2 Cloud’s strengths in simplifying data migration, ensuring data security, and providing easy data access make it attractive for companies looking to leverage cloud computing benefits.

Frequently Asked Questions about On-Premise to Cloud Migration

What is the detailed breakdown of potential cost savings or increases after migrating to the cloud, including hidden costs or savings over time?

The detailed breakdown of migration-related costs encompasses both immediate financial impacts and long-term economic shifts.

Initially, companies may observe a reduction in capital expenditures due to a decreased need for physical hardware and infrastructure. However, operational costs can fluctuate based on consumption, requiring careful management of cloud resources to avoid unexpected expenses.

Over time, efficiencies gained from scalability and flexibility can lead to significant savings, but it’s crucial to account for potential hidden costs such as data transfer fees, compliance, and security investments, and the need for ongoing training and support for staff.

The specific cloud service provider models and their pricing structures will affect the final cost calculation.

How does migrating to the cloud affect a company’s compliance with industry-specific regulations and standards, and what steps should be taken to ensure data security in the cloud?

Migrating to the cloud impacts a company’s compliance with industry regulations by necessitating adherence to new data protection and privacy standards.

Ensuring data security in the cloud involves selecting cloud services that comply with industry standards, implementing robust encryption for data in transit and at rest, and conducting regular security assessments.

Additionally, maintaining clear policies on data access and control, along with employee training on security best practices, is crucial for upholding compliance post-migration.

What kind of long-term support and scalability can businesses expect from their cloud service provider, especially as their needs grow and change?

Businesses must expect robust long-term support and scalability from their cloud service providers, tailored to evolving needs. This includes dynamic resource allocation for handling fluctuating demands and comprehensive customer support for technical issues.

The best providers typically offer various service levels, ensuring businesses can scale up or down efficiently without significant downtime. As needs grow, cloud services adapt, offering upgraded infrastructure, enhanced security measures, and new technologies to support expansion and innovation.

Count on V2 Cloud to guarantee you all that and more!

Final Words: Efficient Cloud Migration Essentials

A successful move from on-premise to the cloud hinges on a clear understanding of your existing setup and a solid plan for transitioning applications. Ensuring your applications are optimized for the cloud, alongside ongoing performance monitoring, is key.

Though cloud migration might appear daunting, thorough planning and execution significantly reduce downtime and disruptions.

Desktop as a Service (DaaS) providers, like V2 Cloud, streamline the migration process, from initial assessments to the migration itself, and even post-transition support and monitoring, ensuring a smooth transition.

We offer comprehensive customer support and monitoring, so be sure that your transition will be successful. Contact our team now to plan your on-premise to cloud migration!

You might also like...

Back to top

Let us help you find the solution that fits your business needs