Cloud computing has been a godsend for many businesses by providing the flexibility and scalability they need to grow and enhance their offerings. Cloud computing, of course, also provides some capital cost reduction. There is no question that the cloud brings plenty of benefits to companies small or large--they now have the ability to pay per month for the computing resources they were making hefty capital investments for not too long ago; and, by-in-large, these investments pay off.
One problem we’ve seen over the years is that companies are so enthusiastic about the prospects of moving data and business process to the cloud that they don’t properly plan their implementations. This can present organizations with wild scenarios where data is all over the place and that their once-reliable in-house computing environment is now disjointed and not working in concert with cloud-based resources.
In order to keep this from happening, organizations need to do their due diligence and find the cloud platform that is right for their needs, while proactively considering the threats their business faces by performing a hasty migration.
What’s missing from the cloud? For many businesses, proper planning.
Migration tips to consider
When moving to the cloud, you have to evaluate how you are going to get there with what you already have. Unfortunately, many businesses don’t consider their data, their applications, and their in-place integrations before committing, and pay for it afterwards.
- Start small and work from there - You wouldn’t dump everything on your on-premise network infrastructure, so why would you do it in the cloud? After all, these are still physical machines somewhere. Businesses should start with a single application, or process (like storage), or a new Internet-based application that is not critical for business use. Once this is successful, and you show clear metrics of success, you can start amping up your cloud migratory projects.
- Augment your existing infrastructure - A powerful benefit of the cloud is that it can extend what you are already in to. You don’t need to move all of your data and infrastructure to the cloud. Most businesses will benefit most from the hybrid-cloud platform. Moving non-essential infrastructure to the cloud can be a great way to utilize the power of hosted computing, without putting your business in jeopardy.
- Hosted solutions are hosted somewhere - You’d be amazed at how many people don’t consider how there is a physical data center hosting their “cloud-based” data and computing infrastructure. By selecting a cloud provider that uses industry-best practices in their management and security systems, you will know that your hosted data and infrastructure are kept on reliable and effective platforms.
- Cloud security has changed - Things have changed substantially in the past few years. Cloud computing has changed things in administration, but it has also changed things in security. With hosted computing that supported remote workers and anytime, anywhere access, network security couldn’t adopt the old “castle and moat” strategy because there were always too many holes in the firewall. This created the new security model where administrators and solutions focus on protecting data and providing managed access. If you are able to see the cloud as an extension of your on-premise infrastructure and create a model to ensure that data is secure and accessible, you are doing more than the typical organization who jumps into the cloud with both feet, only to fall right through. By looking at how you share and access data on your current infrastructure you will begin to understand where the potential security gaps in your system are, and then focus on patching them.
Call the Experts
If you are looking to move some or all of your computing resources to the cloud, you have to be more careful than you may think. The IT professionals at Computerware can provide you with the resources you need to make a successful cloud migration--protecting the data and applications your staff depends on. For more information about hosted computing options in the cloud, or to talk to one of our knowledgeable technicians about moving some or all of your business’ data and infrastructure offsite, call us today at (703) 821-8200.