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The world of internet is continuously abuzz with what the cloud can do and how it has been evolving. The immense popularity is because of its exceptional features such as flexibility, scalability, reliability and affordability which have been major reasons for cloud adoption by companies. Whether you’ve decided to move into the cloud or not, extensive research would be required. And armed with this knowledge of what you can do and what you should avoid, you will be able to take a better decision.

Let’s Check Out the Do’s First

Do analyze your pain points

It is important to have a strategy before you dive straight in. Test the waters and perform extensive research to know whether moving to the cloud would be a solid solution for you. Make a list of all the pain points you currently face and write down what you hope to achieve by migrating to the cloud. This way you won’t be blindsided by unexpected events.

It is quite often the people and the processes that find it difficult to adapt while you move to the cloud, so ensure that they can change and adapt. Sometimes, you get these psychological barriers that prevent you from analyzing your migration strategies correctly. Recognize and solve them before making the plunge.

Do get the services of seasoned experts

Integrating the cloud in your business can be easy when you have the advice and help of seasoned IT experts. It is true that the cloud doesn’t call for any hardware installations or the need to physically get more infrastructure, but having experts is definitely going to help you more.

The top cloud vendors of 2019 are AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, IBM (it recently made the hybrid move) and other key players like Dell, HPE and Cisco. Interestingly, many of the companies have started the concept of mix and match. This happens when the customers prefer to use more than one cloud vendor; AWS and Microsoft Azure are most commonly paired. Now Google Cloud has also entered into the foray where you can have a mix of existing data center and private cloud assets as well.

Security is a major concern while companies move to the cloud. As security features have been tightened, customers can enjoy a heightened sense of security that makes breaches and hacks ‘virtually’ impossible. As opposed to earlier beliefs, companies no longer have to worry about their customer’s data or their own data going into wrong hands.

Do research on credible cloud providers

Once more, it is imperative to make a point here and emphasize that you need to hire reliable cloud vendors, and avoid the other kind like the plague. Recommendations are galore, on the internet and face to face, but take everything that people say with a pinch of salt.

After all, you cannot trust them until you have tried it and tested it yourself. As you endeavor to get the feel around different cloud vendors, you can ask them questions like “How easy is it to get support from them?”, “Can they solve your pain points?”.

Eventually, you can evaluate the vendor’s compliance against global industry standards to know how they handle your data - how safe, secure and “unshared” your data is.

It is also important to note that choosing the best cloud-based system is also not a recipe for success. They should treat data as an asset and transform organizational forms, work streams and engagement models around data, with expectations about strategic outcomes. Moving to the cloud should be closely aligned with a focus based on customer experience, Agile methods and AI infused operations.

Do get trained and train your employees too

Yes, moving to the cloud is meant to make things better, but if you are not sufficiently trained in the matter of the cloud, then it could complicate things further. New trends are coming in every day, so if you aren’t trained enough, and if your staff isn’t competent enough, then the cloud solution would prove to be a burden. It is important for everyone in the team to have acquaintance lessons, not only for current handling, but also to prepare for future developments in cloud computing.

Cloud training makes it possible for your employees to develop skills that will help them to innovate. And it will also be a boon when your company undergoes complex migrations. Many of the cloud providers, especially the big ones provide great training programs, and through these programs hundreds of companies have improved their cloud skills. They have diversified their curriculum to meet customer demands. By equipping the staff with new skills, it is possible to remove the fear of the unknown, especially when the cloud journey is just beginning.

This would help you create a culture of experimentation, especially when they get the time to implement their projects in new ways. You can also show your staff that they are important to the bigger picture, and this would help you achieve departmental and individual goals.

Do include automated testing

It is important to assess performance issues before the application goes out into the cloud. Most of the performance problems are overlooked or missed out when the application is in production, and this leads to a product that is less than perfect. And when the customer starts using it, he would encounter problems and bugs, and reports the same.

Cloud Based Testing Process

Through a cloud-based automated testing process, you can test the applications to check their performance, test actions and their outcomes. Automation tools help in better productivity and shorter test cycles, followed by quick setup and deployment. Cloud based automation tools are much easier than the traditional tools as you don’t have to bother with lengthy setup or installation process. The testing can be done from anywhere in the world, with access to test reports from remote locations, minus the hassle of uploading or downloading.

Do consider containers

Containers have a way to componentize applications to help them be portable, easily managed and orchestrated. Integrating containers with cloud strategy and DevOps makes it easier. Container based applications can be deployed easily and consistently without the botheration of memory, CPU and storage, hence a better option when compared to traditional virtualization and physical application hosting.

When you use a particular cloud platform, make sure it leverages containers as part of the security, governance and cluster management. However, it is also important to consider whether containers are the best way to build and deploy applications. Sometimes it will not be, but it is imperative to consider this kind of application architecture approach and the enabling technologies involved in it.

Do decouple your applications from physical resources

When you design your applications, make them in such a way that they are decoupled from physical resources. The cloud provides the abstraction or virtualization layer between the physical resources and the application. When you decouple the architecture in the design, you can improve the development and deployment stages of the application in a much better way and it helps you to utilize the cloud resources by more than 70%.

Decoupled architecture allows each of the components to perform its own duties without having to depend on each other; and this also helps in structural variations between the source and the target. There will be a buffer to separate the fetch and decode actions in the execution stage. It also operates the program’s memory access and performs functions. The buffer makes a “parallelism” between memory and functions to achieve maximum application performance.

Do review the costs before migration

Money saving is an important benefit of cloud computing, because you pay only for the resources that you use. However, before planning a cloud migration kindly do a review on how much you are spending on the current working plan. This entails checking into data consumption, hiring IT staff, maintenance and power consumption, hardware acquisition and so on. Compare this cost with that of migrating to the cloud.

Though this may seem expensive when you consider it the first time, in the long run, you will only enjoy the benefits. Cloud providers do charge a fee to transfer data into their systems, so these costs will also have to be accounted for.

Maintaining data integrity is a hard task, because no data should be lost in transition. A lot of work is actually involved in ensuring data integrity, and scenarios make it different so you need to account for labor and time spent in syncing the data correctly.

Some applications are not suitable for the cloud, so first garner an understanding of how your platform would interact with current infrastructure and OS. As the next step, you can consider the changes that you will be making for these applications to work in the new cloud environment. This process also asks for more time and money, so you have to be prepared for that.

Do collect more knowledge

Even if you have made the move into the cloud, and the vendor does all the jobs, it would make a positive impression for your business if you are aware of the technological insights. This would help you make well-informed decisions and better strategies to take your business on an upward path. Make it a point to attend cloud computing conferences, seminars and workshops.

Now, what can you Avoid

Don’t forget about security

Security is an integral part of moving to the cloud. Don’t assume that the cloud vendor will manage it all. Ensure whether the security tools provided by the cloud providers will protect your data. Security is an important part of automated testing and should be built as part of CI and CD processes. Security should be extended into DevOps tools and organizations too.

Don’t relocate many applications into the cloud

Sometimes, companies may have hundreds of applications, data and documents to migrate to the cloud. It would be tempting to move them all at once, but that would not be a wise move. Certain applications need extensive changes and making all the changes before migration would make it very expensive.

Don’t be too selective

There is nothing wrong in using the private and public cloud simultaneously. But do a thorough check of the cloud security issues that usually come with the territory. That does not mean you have to be too selective. While security is very important while migrating applications, it is also important to remember to create multiple backups so you don’t lose any data. However, you have to be selective when pricing cloud storage and hosting options.

Don’t transfer everything to the cloud

Having a new operational database is exciting enough, but then that doesn’t mean you have to move all your files to the cloud storage. Sometimes you will have to retain certain files, perhaps for security reasons or perhaps for better efficiency. You can rely on your chief technology expert to help you with what to migrate and what not to.

Don’t start the project with rigid views of the outcome

It would be wise not to experiment too early in the cloud journey. While it is okay to fail in the beginning, don’t let it go slow or halt delivery. You still have an application that has to be tried, tested and shipped. You cannot under deliver on the experiment. Even if it is so, it is equally important you should measure its success so the application’s quality is retained.

Conclusion

Businesses of all sizes and shapes are making use of the cloud advantage, not just the large enterprises. According to a report by the Forbes contributor, Louis Columbus, about 78% of the people running small businesses are expected to shift to the cloud by 2020. This proves that the business sector is fully recognizing the benefits of moving to the cloud. But it is also imperative to consider the Do’s and Don’ts before making the actual move.

Interested in moving to the cloud the right way? We can help you with that!

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