News of nightmare public cloud migrations are the type of headlines that keep businesses awake at night. No one wants to see everything fall apart during a public cloud migration, but it’s a reality that hits many companies the hard way.
Of course, migrations can’t always be perfect. This is particularly true without a comprehensive plan and public cloud migration strategy! Establishing your strategy in advance reduces stress and ensures an easier post-migration cleanup for your team.
In order to improve performance, you have to understand your current performance. Start by establishing a baseline performance and determining the key performance indicators for your workload. This will help you identify potential improvements and right-size your cloud deployment.
For instance, assess some current bottlenecks (e.g. storage and computing power). Consider how these bottlenecks impact workload performance and how this would improve by making resources available in the cloud. Once you’ve completed the migration, your performance profile will change, but it’s still essential to understand your current standings. During the migration, you’ll be in a better position to optimize and provide quantitative improvement data.
An evolutionary mindset is essential to a successful cloud migration. Since migrations can take as long as one to two years, technology and requirements are likely to shift, such that additional changes will be necessary. In some respects, a migration is never completely finished.
Try to see the migration as part of your ongoing evolution. Adopting a philosophy of continuous improvement can help put these changes in perspective and drive your team to embrace new concepts and services in the public cloud.
Along the way, it’s important to test your systems and reduce downtime to a level appropriate for end users. While internal users of an application might be satisfied with temporary workarounds during downtime, your customers will quickly abandon you for competitors offering a more resilient solution.
It’s critical to understand how your workload is currently configured to provide high availability and resiliency in the face of failure. Transferring this knowledge to the cloud will not be a 1:1 mapping; you’ll need to update your configuration to take advantage of potential improvements and mitigate any gaps.
Workload selection is all about prioritization and migrating the right workloads at the right time. In other words, which workloads need to stay on-premises, which ones should be migrated first, and in what order should the migration occur? Your organization needs to answer these questions before starting the migration process.
While it may seem tempting to move the most important workloads first, this would likely be the most complicated scenario, with multiple confounding factors. Instead, choose a simpler, less critical workload for your first migration, and then increase the level of complexity in subsequent attempts.
Performing a small, quick migration first as a test and pilot can help you establish winning strategies and approaches. The important thing is to choose the right small project for this initial migration phase. During this process, be sure to keep a close eye on the migration—services such as AWS Migration Hub will help you monitor the process.
The right Migration Plan can dramatically improve your chances of a smooth, uneventful migration to the cloud.
If you’re crafting your public cloud migration strategy and need to avoid a migration nightmare (and who doesn’t?), please don’t hesitate to reach out to us to learn more about what’s involved and how Anexinet’s expert consultants can help.
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