Cloud computing has been a hot topic for over a decade. Most businesses and organisations, including the government, are using some element of cloud computing already.
Gartner estimates that a shift to the cloud will affect $1 trillion of IT spending between now and 2020. This makes “cloud computing one of the most disruptive forces of IT spending since the early days of the digital age.”
This should be no surprise as IT budgets go much further in the Cloud; significant savings can be made in all areas of cloud services.
“The Cloud” is an umbrella term for a vast market of IT service providers and vendors, supplying everything from Software as a Service (SaaS) to Business Processes (BPaaS) Application Infrastructure (PaaS) and Systems Infrastructure (IaaS). Almost any IT function you can imagine, from email to connectivity, data storage to productivity tools and backup servers has a vendor - or several - that provide these services in the cloud.
Moving to the cloud is a popular choice with businesses wanting to save money, improve processes, enhance security and vastly reduce capital investments in technology. Here are a few things you need to know before you get started, or before you move everything else to the cloud.
#1: Have a Plan
With new data protection legislation coming into force, such as GDPR, you are no longer protected from third-party mistakes or failings if you outsource. Now more than ever, you need confidence that consumer data is secure.
Put a strategy in place, especially when you’ve been selectively moving some services to the cloud already - such as productivity tools, storage (e.g. Dropbox, Box, etc.), email (Gmail) - to ensure infrastructure, websites (a major target of hackers) and data is secure. Connectivity security is vital.
Sending secure files through a connection with weak security - such as the Internet - is as secure as leaving a laptop open in a coffee shop or train.
#2: Join the Dots
Most organisations already have some functions already served by cloud providers. Now is the time to ensure a migration includes everything else, thereby reducing costs - including maintenance, upgrades and investing in new hardware. You don't need to worry about any of that anymore.
With cloud providers, you only pay a monthly fee, plus any extra costs, as agreed beforehand. External IT services aim to deliver a fixed-cost model that businesses love. Joining the dots and connecting existing cloud services with infrastructure, such as cloud servers and connectivity networks is the most effective way to make IT more efficient and maintain high levels of security.
#3: Keep Local Copies or Backups During Cloud Migration
Moving to the cloud can be a little scary, especially when moving valuable client files and customer data. IT providers should always suggest keeping backups, at least for a while, either on local files, or establishing the backup servers first, before the main data migration.
Once that is done and everything is running smoothly, you can start clearing out the local data, to save space and get everyone used to accessing files through cloud servers.
Businesses can also use this time for some housekeeping. Delete data you no longer need, providing you keep within data protection and accounting rules.
#4: Get the Right Level of Support
IT support, such as a help or service desk, can also be provided remotely. You don't need to manage this function in-house.
In fact, just like the migration of cloud services, companies are finding external support superior to internal teams. They cost less, whilst finally making it possible for internal IT teams to focus on long-term strategic objectives, such as making a cloud migration as smooth as possible for the whole business.
To explore cloud migration in more detail with relevance to your organisations IT systems and infrastructure contact me directly on 0845 643 6060 or email Chad.Stigant@ukngroup.com