Scale your business with cloud transformation. Here’s how.

Cloud transformation enables your organization to quickly adopt new technology, respond to immediate market needs, and scale your business operations. Here is a practical cloud transformation roadmap for you to start migrating to the cloud now.

What is cloud transformation

Cloud transformation is the process of moving your operations to the cloud in accordance with your company’s business objectives. Migrating to the cloud involves modifying, upgrading, and moving an organization’s applications, ranging in complexity, purpose, and criticality, from on-premise or co-located hardware. 

You don’t necessarily have to fully commit. Start by migrating and connecting only some of your apps, software programs, and data. Once you feel confident, you can decide whether to move the rest of your company’s infrastructure to the cloud.

Benefits of cloud transformation

Market needs change fast and often, and cloud transformation’s main value for any business is the ability to quickly onboard the latest technology and rapidly adapt and respond to market needs.

Cloud transformation allows for:

  • new potential revenue streams
  • increased operational efficiency
  • sharable and reusable components
  • optimization of business process costs
  • centralized network security
  • better analytics
  • enhanced ability to react to user needs
  • the lowering of analytics costs (just as mining big data in the cloud has made the analytics process less costly)
  • better business continuity and disaster recovery

Cloud transformation enables IT modernization in a variety of industries. One example: Proekspert developed a heating system control application to optimize and improve the control and monitoring of remote ground-source heat pumps and migration to the cloud.

Cloud transformation allows for a smoother upgrade of your legacy hardware that is expensive to maintain, difficult to upgrade, and limited in capability.

Rather than investing in internal infrastructures, cloud computing provides unlimited computing capacity with immediate access to everyone in real-time.

Where to start with your cloud transformation

Starting something new is always intimidating. Drawing on our experience with clients, we’ve put together a cloud transformation roadmap to best prepare you and simplify your cloud transformation journey.

However, there are unknowns in any journey. Be agile. Don’t overthink. Start now. The help you need is available.

1. Define your business objective: the short-term and long-term cloud visions

Before you begin on the technical side, align your focus and expectations for the cloud transformation.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Why do you want to migrate the business?
  • Do you want to find new ways to store your data?
  • What resources do you have?
  • Do you want to make your business more scalable?
  • Do you want to have more centralized data storage?

The answers to these questions will determine your cloud transformation strategy. It will become apparent whether to go with the cloud-native or lift-and-shift migration approach.

2. Establish a core team responsible for the cloud transformation

Establish a dedicated team that would lead the process of cloud transformation and is responsible for the implementation and the development of the transformation roadmap. Once your business objectives are clear, assess your ability to execute with existing internal resources and, if necessary, engage an experienced partner.

Cloud transformation requires expertise and experience. Don’t underestimate the time and effort needed to migrate to the cloud. It is a full-time job. When looking for a partner, focus on their past cases to evaluate compatibility with your goals.

Finding a good partner for your cloud transformation journey is a crucial part to determine the outcome. Take time to research and test the collaboration properly.

All further steps of the cloud transformation can be taken together with your partner who supports the initiative.

3. Outline possible cloud transformation constraints

Understanding the risks and limitations of the process specific to your business allows you to develop the best mitigation strategies, or you may simply eliminate constraints to avoid any possible setbacks. It also shows which parts of the process need the most attention, focus, and priority.

Constraints may include:

  • not understanding what cloud transformation is
  • your company culture
  • inability to find a good cloud transformation partner
  • impact on existing operational models is to hard to control

Once your vision is established, it and the value of cloud initiatives must be clearly articulated and well socialized among all parties affected. Leaders and influencers must actively engage and support the change.

4. Establish cloud transformation metrics

Establishing a concrete metrics system will help you track progress and ensure you’re moving in the right direction. Focus on metrics that are most important for the process you’ve outlined. 

Metrics show how your migration-in-progress is going, illuminating visible or invisible problems that may be hiding within your application.

5. Choose an application to migrate. Start small.

Our experience suggests starting with applications that are:

  • not mission-critical
  • consume the least amount of resources
  • expected to experience quick growth

Applications that are mission-critical are usually not good candidates for migrating first since any problems they experience have the potential to cause larger problems throughout the business.

Cloud updates are relatively quick and easy compared to on-site updates, and scalability allows for the number of users to be increased easily.

6. Choose the right cloud provider

Select a partner that matches your needs and ethics.

There are a large number of cloud providers in the market, both public and private.

Start by evaluating what matters most to you:

  • brand
  • capacity
  • cost
  • customer support
  • security

Consider multi-cloud

By choosing multiple cloud providers, businesses can take advantage of the best parts of each provider’s services, customizing to suit needs and expectations as they go.

Additionally, a multi-cloud strategy gives organizations greater ownership over their data, reduces the risk in case of downtime, and arms them with negotiating leverage. It lets them shop around for service needs from multiple vendors.

7. Make sure your process is aligned with the GDPR

When moving data to the cloud, you should not only make sure data is safe, but also be certain that sensitive data is not distributed uncontrolled, since data may be transferred from one location to another or may be hosted in multiple locations at the same time.

At this stage you may face GDPR challenges.

Here are the steps necessary when it comes to the GDPR:

  • Data Protection Officer – GDPR law stipulates companies must appoint Data Protection Officers
  • data breach notification and coordination – a contract with a cloud provider must define breach notification obligations
  • data ownership – make sure you own the data, not the cloud provider
  • the right to be forgotten – if an EU resident no longer wants their data to be processed or stored, they can request the complete removal of data and this must be guaranteed by you and the cloud provider

Although the GDPR can be frightening since it’s connected with high fines, you should not worry if you have the right cloud architecture, cloud transformation partner, the right cloud provider, and the correct processes in place.

Begin the cloud transformation now

Cloud transformation in the current global market state is necessary to remain competitive, and it’s an essential component of any innovative organizational strategy. It is the prerequisite step for digital transformation initiatives.

Starting with the cloud transformation will likely lead to many positive changes in all areas of your business: design, testing, implementation of new ways of working, and finding creative approaches to dominate the market.

Get going with your cloud transformation. We are here to help!
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