Six Steps to Pandemic-Accelerated Digital Transformation

Has COVID-19 accelerated your digital transformation plan? Learn how to experience the benefits of cloud migration.

Whether you had a digital transformation strategy that included harnessing the benefits of cloud solutions before the pandemic or not, it’s likely you do now. Enterprises across the globe adjusted to a sudden shift to working from home and its challenges by making the most of what the cloud has to offer – including, most importantly, its work-from-anywhere format.

Like any cloud migration, those focused on solving COVID-19 challenges are using it as a means to an end. The end goal is not to have a fully cloud-based environment, but to utilize the benefits of cloud technology for the purposes of equipping teams, boosting productivity, and retaining customers and revenue.

Enterprise IT should not rush to migrate any workloads without some planning and preparation. While cloud-native applications are the preferred approach, few enterprises will be successful in the migration of existing and legacy applications to the cloud. It’s not as simple as just shifting code from an on-premise server to the cloud. There will be heavy lifting to enhance, extend, and rewrite some sections of applications. These six steps will help you get there seamlessly:

Establish Priorities: As stated above, migrating to the cloud is not your goal; you need to use digital transformation to execute your business goals. As such, not all workloads are ideal for the cloud, so you’ll need to spend some time determining what you’re trying to achieve and how moving different types of workloads to the cloud might help you meet those objectives.

Determine Options: There are many factors that will determine the right path for your transformation:

  • Lift-and-shift or rehosting, which moves an application workload to a cloud environment. It is the least labor intensive, but may result in overprovisioning and sub-optimal deployment.
  • Extend to the cloud, in which existing workloads use cloud services only when necessary.
  • Cloud optimization, which rearchitects and rewrites sections of applications, while keeping the basic application intact.
  • Cloud native, which replaces an existing application with one that’s written to take full advantage of cloud resources.
  • Software as a service (SaaS), often favored for non-core applications, such as billing or human resources, to replace existing applications.

Identify Interdependencies: No matter which path you choose, you will eventually move some workloads from on-premise or private cloud platforms into the public cloud, but you’ll need to be aware of the risk of breaking dependencies. Workload interdependencies are also important for determining the sequence of your migration or what will need to be kept on-premises.

Profile Workloads: You’ll need to develop your initial cloud migrations and the associated costs, grouping workloads if they number in the hundreds or thousands. Cluster them according to utilization, resource, and time-based characteristics in an effort to condense complexity and limit the scale of your profiling process. You’ll need to create a sample workload for each of these groups, which you will use to estimate configuration choices and costs.

Test, Refine and Optimize: Test the configurations you propose, gaining understanding about the performance and costs before making a commitment. Test the performance levels to ensure it meets application requirements and that your network is equipped to handle cloud application demands. Create plans to continue to monitor and optimize in order to keep the cloud infrastructure the right size for your enterprise in terms of efficiency, cost, and performance.

Assess Results: In the age of COVID-19, survival may be the first measure of success, but once the initial race to keep everyone connected has been successful, take time to evaluate. Examine results compared to your expected benefits of cloud migration.Is your enterprise racing to implement a digital transformation plan as a result of the pandemic? Don’t jump in without a reliable and informed guide. Contact us at ITBroker.com to prepare for a smooth transition to cloud migration.