Essentially all major digital enterprises are in the process of moving to a cloud-based platform in both storage and computational analysis if they haven’t already. There’s no doubt your company has felt the pressure of this immense cloud platform momentum shift; however, the financial models attempting to illustrate the business impact of cloud adoption share a common factor – the time and cost to benefit ratio always fluctuate and rarely shake out the same twice.
So, how is the cost of migrating data to a cloud-based platform still this unpredictable? The reason is not exactly simple, but it is easy to identify… reactive action as opposed to proactive planning.
The trap many companies get sucked into with moving to the Cloud is the nifty phrasing and simplicity of “lift and shift.” What’s so hard about it, just move everything into the cloud! The error in this line of thinking lies in the assumption that every company’s needs are the same and that there’s a set recipe your company can follow to reap the benefits of cloud-based solutions.
In reality, any cloud migration strategy is much more complex than just “lift and shift.” There are countless factors at play when considering a full-scale cloud migration process. That’s not to say it is not worth the effort, only to point out that you won’t be able to decide to figure out a cloud migration strategy on Monday and be completely ready to roll by Friday.
The first thing to investigate is your company’s day-in-day-out infrastructure and application costs. Both direct and indirect costs should be considered. The direct costs cover things like maintenance of any on-premise server, software licenses, warrants, supplies, materials, and other cloud costs while indirect costs relate to the potential losses of revenue for your company during database migration downtime and outages that result in lowered productivity.
Once this baseline has been established, the next step is getting some estimates for cloud migration services – any top cloud service provider will have a user-friendly online calculator to handle this step. Shop around and make calls to ensure your company gets the plan it deserves.
The final factor to consider is the literal costs of cloud migration. While moving data to the cloud is pretty commonplace, that does not mean it’s a quick and easy file drag-and-drop.
In addition, when porting applications and software services to the cloud, there is a lot of grey area. For example, there are common applications already designed and prepackaged for either localized or cloud-based usage. But, depending on what types of legacy software your company uses on a day to day basis, refactoring and augmentations to this software to take advantage of cloud computational capabilities may be costly and time-consuming. Thus, when it comes to sizing up your cloud migration efforts, it is important to deeply consider the plan of action with all direct and indirect costs laid out. That’s why it’s important to ensure you’ve got the right team working on your company’s cloud migration effort, a combination of internal and external experts that are capable of considering any and all variables at play.