Does slow and steady win the race to the cloud?
The Tortoise and the Hare. You all know the story (Aesop’s Fable) ... smart-arsed Hare makes fun of Tortoise for being so slow. A challenge is made, a race ensues, a Fox officiates, the race begins. The Hare storms to a lead, feels confident, has a nap, the Tortoise passes him as he sleeps, the Hare wakes up, but its too late … the Tortoise wins. It’s a great story … so um … what on earth does this have to do with your migration to the cloud?
Companies that were further along in their cloud uptake have probably adapted easily to the new normal we find ourselves in, without too much disruption. They had already made their move to the cloud before COVID-19 started knocking us about. However, companies that haven’t yet started their cloud journey, must consider whether to take the route of either the Hare or the Tortoise. Such wise words.
The Tortoises amongst us, that feel like they've fallen behind in the race to the cloud, may have experienced multiple challenges when the pandemic struck. But there are still benefits for organisations that are just now starting their digital transformation, and there are reasons not to be the Hare in the rush to the finish line.
At the heart of many digital transformation initiatives is the cloud. An efficient and well-managed cloud can help organisations innovate, remain agile, and provide a competitive edge. Despite how integral the cloud has become for doing business, many organisations have yet to adopt it. Before they do however, there are things to consider when developing a cloud migration plan, including cost, training and security.
In addition to your monthly cloud service invoice, you must factor in the cost of moving data to the cloud. The additional training to familiarise employees with the new services and initiatives, plus potential consulting and engineering fees on top of that. Organisations need to take these costs into account as they are spinning up a budget. Consider the following to help you plan your costs for migration; audit the cost of your current IT infrastructure, use the calculator from your cloud provider to get a sense of what your monthly spend will be and allow for any additional costs such as training or consulting fees.
One challenge that needs to be overcome when moving to a cloud service, is making sure your team has the skills to manage it once you’re there. Lack of skills in this area could delay your move, and it’s not an overnight fix to bring your IT staff up to speed either. Gartner reported back in 2020, that half of organisations that want to move to the cloud will be delayed by up to two years due to lack of in-house IaaS skills. You may also find some reluctance in your team to migrate because of the time and energy that it takes, and also because people naturally don’t like change. It’s worth investing the time and targeting early adopters in the organisation and let this spread organically. Organisations can avoid delays by partnering with companies that specialise in cloud management and have a successful track record with migrations in their industry.
Rushing like the Hare through your migration can leave your organisation vulnerable to future security breaches and cyber-attacks. The increase in cloud uptake due to the pandemic has security experts concerned. Many are saying that it’s likely that Covid has increased the level of cyber-threat and that this is now the new norm. In addition to this, it is estimated that the cause of many cloud breaches is due to human error, in the form of configuration mistakes, underscoring the importance of training for your team. Organisations should carefully proceed with migration plans to ensure their newly adopted cloud infrastructure is secure and compliant.
The best approach to cloud migration is to not rush it, and this is how the Tortoises of digital transformation will thrive. Organisations that think ahead and plan their migration avoid increased costs and lessen their vulnerability to security risks. This means getting the full benefit of the cloud and maintaining a competitive edge. Taking the time to find a partner that provides services or products that can assist your organisation with cloud management sets you up for long-term success.
It may seem like it’s crucial to adopt the cloud as quickly as possible. The marketing behind it makes it seem like a no-brainer. But jumping the gun too early, or a poorly thought out, poorly spec’d migration, and throw a global pandemic into the mix … well, you could end up like the Hare. The cloud is constantly evolving, and Covid has changed the game further. Organisations that have waited for the opportune time, can still reap the rewards of this innovation.
When it comes to cloud migration, perhaps being a Tortoise is the best option. Slow and steady may win the race.