Cloud migration becomes more and more popular way to boost your business performance. Digital transformation enhancing technological development in your company gives your business incredible growth opportunities. But how not to get lost in the process?

Why So Many Cloud Migrations Fail?

Surveys show that even up to 30% of cloud migrations fail. If you compare it to $88.46 billion, which was the valuation of the cloud migration market in 2019, that’s a huge loss for companies. However, most of their money could be saved.

Usually, it’s not only one factor that causes problems and leads to financial loss. It makes the situation even more complex. You could compare it to a multifactorial disease. Fighting only one cause isn’t enough to make your brand-new cloud work the way you planned.

Cloud migrations fail when companies neglect at least a few issues crucial for the process. Below you have a list of the most common and the most dangerous matters to cover. Moreover, you will also find some advice on how to avoid them.

10 Common Cloud Migration Mistakes and Pitfalls

1. Migrating everything at once

Migrating all your data to a cloud at once is an organizational and technological challenge. You can think it’s the quickest way, but usually, it’s the other way round. Therefore, start your migration with smaller chunks of data and applications. It’ll enable gradual adjustments so that all your systems work the way you need.

2. Neglecting differences between cloud environments

You shouldn’t assume that all cloud environments are the same. Every cloud provider has its specificity. Their infrastructure, architectural solutions, and applications will differ. When you’re making your decision to choose between various cloud providers, make sure you know the differences and choose what‘s best for your company, or choose cloud-agnostic solutions and services based on defined protocol or API.

3. Migrating without a cause

Before you start the migration process, consider which data, workflows, or applications will benefit from the migration. In other words, moving every piece of data or software to a cloud must have a business justification. Check how working in a new environment will affect your applications and their ability to provide the required level of service.

4. No data and apps adjustments

Some data and applications are ready to migrate right away. However, most of them need some adjustments to get the most of the new infrastructure. Some applications will need to be replaced with a cloud-ready solution. Even more, sometimes you need to decide whether a particular app should run faster or cheaper.

5. Unrealistic projection of cloud migration costs

Cloud migration is a complex process. If you want to have the full picture of upcoming costs you should take into account a few issues: analysis and market research, planning, data adjustments, infrastructure configuration, migration itself, optimization, training, and maintenance. Every migration project is unique, therefore you should carefully estimate the overall cost for your company and check it against expected profits.

6. Neglecting security issues

On-premise infrastructure gives you full control over your digital assets. With cloud infrastructure the situation is different. That’s why you need to check how your cloud provider defines security services. How their cloud is protected for breaches and what additional means of security you can apply.

7. Lack of expertise

Do you want the cloud migration to be aligned with your company strategy? If so, you’ll need an experienced specialist, or better a whole team of specialists, who knows the rope of running a successful cloud migration projects. Such an implementation team needs not only management skills but also matured experience and a deep understanding of the cloud environment.

Moreover, your cloud experts will be handy after the migration as well. Their help will be invaluable for maintenance activities, but also problem-solving, optimizing, and knowledge sharing. You can choose from at least three solutions to this issue. One is training your employees, another is hiring new talents in your company. Finally, you can outsource the skills you need and hire an experienced company dealing with cloud migrations.

8. Lack of cloud migration strategy

You can read about the cloud migration strategies in our article. You need to think globally about your company and the cloud migration. Migration and the way you conduct it will affect the way your company works on many levels. In today globalized world you may need to think even about the locations of cloud infrastructure and your users.

Moreover, anything can go wrong. As I pointed out at the beginning, almost a third of cloud migrations fail. That’s why it’s good to have a plan B. Prepare backup procedures and think, what will you do if something goes not as planned.

9. Ignoring Infrastructure as Code approach

Infrastructure as Code (IaC) is one of the most common ways to optimize and automate infrastructure provisioning and maintenance. Applying the IaC approach increases the potential for scalability. You also benefit from better cost control and quicker response to changes in the business or technological environment. Moreover, with version control, IaC is safer and more resistant.

10. Lack of upgrade policy

Lack of upgrade policy or sticking to the non-cloud upgrade policy is a big mistake. As your application or service will develop and the environment will change, you’ll need upgrades. With on-premise infrastructure you would turn off the software, upgrade it, and then switch it on again. As a result, users lose access to your service. A proper upgrade policy for cloud solutions includes the blue-green deployment approach and lets you upgrade your application with no downtime. Even if you plan to upgrade a distributed system, you can perform a rolling upgrade on a running system, upgrading single elements one after another. In brief, you create a new, upgraded instance, redirect all traffic from the old one, and then shut it down. Simple and effective.

Are you ready for the migration?

We know that you can avoid all these mistakes and pitfalls on your way to a flexible cloud-based company. 10 mistakes described in this article aren’t the only ones you can commit. However, they’re the most common. Moreover, they affect the whole migration, therefore are more dangerous to the cloud migration project.

If you want to consult your cloud migration plans:

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