Agility, scalability, innovation and more – the benefits of migrating to the cloud are many.
Migrating to the cloud isn’t easy, but the benefits outweigh the challenges greatly – especially in the current climate. Before we walk through the critical steps that will ensure a successful migration, let’s take a look at the beginning, advantages and challenges.
The need for making data more accessible gained importance first back in the 1970s leading to the birth of the floppy disk – a magnetic strip on which one could read and write data with limited capacity. As the need grew, innovation followed in the form of USB drives with greater capacity.
The age of the internet only took innovation in the space further with Amazon establishing the Amazon Web Service (AWS) in 2006 giving rise to the age of cloud computing.
Not only did cloud computing change the way databases are managed, but it also granted us remote access to data. Organisations used to set up in-house data centre’s and hire staff to maintain them.
This came at an additional cost – operational, space and manpower. However, with cloud computing, it was possible to reduce costs and the challenges that came with maintaining a physical server.
The advantages of cloud migration
With a physical server, any innovation came at a huge cost. This caused organisations to take it slow and be very sure of the success of their project. But we know today that sustained innovation is a result of many small yet measurable iterations – not the result of one big idea alone.
That’s the biggest advantage migrating to the cloud brings to the table. The flexibility and scalability it provides allow for small, yet continuous innovation.
The benefits don’t end at innovation and cost reduction though. It also supports growth, agility and security.
- Growth: All organisations aim for growth and success – the vision and milestones are set to enable and empower this. But as you grow, the need for space increases with it, literally and figuratively.
Balancing the investment costs often feels like a juggling act. Now is when the base function of cloud services, which is removing the space required for on-premise servers and the teams to maintain them, comes into play. Whether you plan to grow by 50 or 1000 people in a financial year, the cloud has the flexibility to grow along with you.
- Agility: True business agility doesn’t come from the speed at which your IT team can adopt new solutions or processes. It is a result of the speed with which your entire organisation can pivot to meet the needs of the marketplace.
This means every department at all levels need to embrace change – which demands seamless integration and communication. Cloud-based solutions are built to enable this and more.
- Security: Consumers globally are savvier than ever, and the security of data is their primary concern. Not surprisingly, more consumers today say they’d rather associate themselves with organisations that prioritize security.
Primarily because online threats have grown in numbers and impact significantly in the last decade alone. Cloud service providers are better equipped and resourced to mitigate cyberattacks and the occasional leak due to human error.
It is glad to see that more enterprises and business leaders are now acknowledging and embracing the benefits of the cloud and understanding that it can help drive business change and deliver value.
Overall cloud spending is also expected to reach US$200 billion in the region by 2024, with investment into cloud growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 20% since 2018.
Understanding the challenge
The rising cloud adoption has undoubtedly opened up more opportunities in the region and in fact, attracted suppliers to increase their investment in the APAC markets.
For instance, Google Cloud has opened a second cloud region in India, the tenth in the region, this year where AWS is expanding its footprint into Melbourne next year, to open its eighth cloud region in APAC.
The advantages are significant but understanding the two main challenges it poses is also of utmost importance.
The first and foremost challenge is the need for reliable network services. If you can’t connect to the cloud, you can leverage its infinite solutions.
The second is adoption. Every individual in your organisation is a different place with technology. The younger they are, the more likely they are accustomed to learning and using new technologies.
The same can’t be said for the more experienced team members. Universal acceptance will need consistent communication, organisation-wide training and support.
Planning for these ahead of time is critical.
Two critical steps for success
The first is building the migration path strategically. You don’t want to start with systems that are critical to business continuity. All migration projects have a learning curve, and you don’t want to start learning with a system that you can’t afford to have ‘down’ for any period of time.
The second is choosing the right provider for you. Demand for experience – this isn’t a one size fits all scenario. You want the service provider to understand your industry and needs before deciding on what’s right for – public, private or hybrid services.
You can’t do it all at once. So, start small but start now – the clock is ticking.