Just a few years ago, on-premise infrastructure was the way to go for many companies and enterprises. But nowadays things are moving to the cloud very quickly because those same companies and enterprises have realized they’re missing out on an opportunity to grow, improve, and make their infrastructure more secure. In the modern world, it’s an opportunity you can’t be sleeping on if you want to remain competitive in your industry. It’s time for you and your enterprise to consider a cloud migration strategy that’ll help you move your on-premise infrastructure to the cloud.
With that in mind, it’s not something you should be doing on your own, because there are far too many factors you need to consider. Not every cloud migration strategy works for every type of enterprise, so let’s talk about what cloud migration is and what the best way to manage it is.
What is Cloud Migration?
Before we get into which cloud migration strategy is right for you, let’s discuss what cloud migration is. At its core, it’s all about moving everything your enterprise uses – the software, the databases, every application – from your current infrastructure to a cloud environment. Alternatively, cloud migration could also be about moving your enterprise from the cloud service you use at the moment to a different one.
There are various reasons for this, but the main ones are that on-premise infrastructure can become outdated very quickly, is sometimes unreliable and not secure enough, can be difficult to manage, is very resource heavy, and notoriously difficult to scale. Add to this all the running-related costs you have associated with every resource and application being on-premise, and you find that it’s far from ideal.
If you move to a cloud infrastructure service, you have a lot to gain. First of all, you have reduced infrastructure running-related costs – as much as 30 to 50 percent, depending on your current infrastructure and how you manage your enterprise. In addition, you don’t need to invest in expensive on-premise infrastructure, which leads us perfectly to the next point – scalability.
Scalability is difficult to predict when you’re on-premise, due to the related costs and resources. With cloud computing, you likely have every resource you could ever need – all you need to do is make use of it. Sure, the costs of that aren’t always cheap, but they’re more affordable than scaling on-premise infrastructure.
Last but not least, you have security. Cloud storage is a lot more secure than an on-premise infrastructure, and to make things even more interesting, it’s easier to make a cloud-based service more secure than it is an on-premise one. Cloud computing providers tend to put a heavy focus on being as secure as possible, and there are always security-related, dedicated teams that will hop in and manage any potential issue.
Now that you know what it is and why you need it, let’s take a look at a few popular strategies that you should consider.
Which Cloud Migration Strategy Is Right for You?
Before we get into the strategies themselves, it’s important to go through the basics steps you need to undertake. It is these steps that will decide which of the strategies is right for you and which one to go for.
Kicking things off, you need to plan things out. You need to have a clear idea of why you’re moving and which cloud service you are moving to because those two things will greatly dictate the right cloud migration strategy for you. Having a specialist who has experience with these things is crucial towards doing them right, as a well-versed team will be able to suggest exactly what you need.
Then there’s the move, and again – a specialist can help significantly because things tend to not go as planned, which you should try to avoid. And last but not least, you want to compare the performance and make sure you’ve done things right – you want every resource to be used as best it can.
With that being said, let’s check out some of the strategies, shall we? They’re known as the “six R’s of migration”, and each is tailored to a different situation.
With rehosting, you are essentially moving your entire on-premise infrastructure, as is, without any significant changes. This is the perfect cloud migration strategy if you don’t need to implement any of the advanced capabilities cloud computing offers and each application you use is fine as-is.
Very similar to rehosting, replatforming indicates some changes will need to be done to better optimize your business environment for cloud infrastructure. The gist of it is the same, but you usually get better performance and can upgrade things more easily down the line.
If your business relies on an old infrastructure that no longer does the job for you, refactoring is the method you need to be looking into. Refactoring means you will need to completely rebuild every application in a cloud-optimized way from scratch. It is also very time-consuming and the costs can be insanely high. While it’s a bit of a process to get everything done, it’s the best strategy in terms of compatibility and futureproofing.
If refactoring is something you want to avoid, repurchasing is similar. However, instead of rebuilding things from scratch, you optimize preexisting, cloud-native apps that do everything you need for your business or enterprise. Yes, it might take a bit of time until everyone gets used to them, but it’s effective in terms of time and money.
If your business has apps that are no longer in use and it doesn’t make sense to maintain them and pay for them anymore, retiring is the strategy you should consider. Rather than paying for those apps, repurpose the savings towards improving overall performance.
This is the one cloud migration strategy that you don’t see too often, and it doesn’t involve moving to the cloud. Some businesses can’t move to the cloud yet, and retaining leaves things be for the moment with the promise to revisit when things change down the line. It’s about not forcing things that don’t make sense, regardless of how good of an idea it might seem to be.