Cloud Migration means moving a company's applications, databases, digital assets and services, IT resources, and subsequently business capabilities from on-premises to the cloud, either partially,or fully. If applications and assets are already in the cloud but shall be modernized within the service portfolio of the existing cloud service provider or moved to another cloud service provider, we call this a Cloud-to-Cloud migration.
In general, cloud transformation is the broader concept, referring to the entire project of moving an organization, including IT infrastructure, applications, data, and processes to the Cloud. Theoretically, cloud migration refers to only a part of a cloud transformation, describing the actual shifting towards the cloud. However, cloud migration and cloud transformation are often used synonymously.
In this blog article, we will guide you through the 5 main steps of a cloud migration.
A cloud migration needs sound planning, a thought-through strategy and often requires the entire organization to support the process. For an organization to become cloud-based, there are five main steps to take:
After the selection of the preferred cloud service portfolio, the actual application migration takes place. However, the cloud transformation doesn’t end here (Spoiler: it never really ends at all, as IT needs to innovate and adapt constantly). To ensure optimal cloud usage in term of price, service types and quality and other business requirements, constant reevaluation of services is needed. This is covered in the fifth and last step: Continuous modernization and portfolio optimization.
We’ll cover each transformation phase with ane extended summary, more details and additional resources (posters, videos).The 5 phases of a Cloud Transformation
Every cloud transformation project roots in one question: “What’s the business value for the company of moving to the cloud (or another cloud)?” The company's internal stakeholders need to align on their desired business outcomes to ensure a goal-oriented transformation process. Possible business values pursued by a cloud migration could be:
To understand whether there is a business case, you first need to analyse the cost of existing on-premises or cloud estates. Then, to allow for comparison, you have to forecast target state cloud cost, know your current and future carbon footprint, determine alternative cloud services or cloud service configurations. Based on these initial evaluations, you can derive your business case. Business case building can be supported by system integrator partners or the customer facing teams of your strategic cloud service provider.
You can also read more about cloud business cases on the respective pages of AWS, Google, and Azure.
If you don’t know what you’re getting into, you can’t reasonably expect a good outcome. So when moving to the cloud, the first thing you need to do is getting an overview of all data, applications, assets etc that need to be migrated. This data may be easily available or scattered among different sources, formats and often data silos, requiring manual work from application owners and other stakeholders.
Key pieces information you need to gather are:
If you want to learn more about the data collection phase, head over to this blog article “Understanding the IT landscape before moving to the cloud”, download our data collection poster or watch this short video:
In this phase, you assess your data and applications for mainly two tings: First: How easy is it to migrate this asset? And second: How much will it benefit from the migration? This includes a thorough evaluation of possible migration risks and pitfalls to avoid. Organizations must assess their applications from four different perspectives to cover the full picture:
Based on these assessment findings, suitable migrations strategies have to be defined for every single application. The most commonly used framework are the 6R’s of Cloud Migration, referring to 6 different migration (or non-migration) strategies that can be applied. You’ve never heard of Refactoring, Rearchitecting, Repurchasing etc? In that case you should familarize yourself with the concept in our most popular blog article “All you need to know: The 6R’s of Cloud Migration”
To learn more about the application assessment phase, head over to this blog article "What is a Cloud Readiness Assessment?", watch this short application assessment video or download our poster:
What does the ideal cloud estate look like and how do you get there? The target architecture describes your desired cloud architecture, containing a detailed list of services and cloud products.
These are the key steps to building a target architecture:
If you’d like to read more about target architectures & migration planning, head over to this blog article How to define a right cloud target architecture?, download our target architecture poster or watch this short video:
We warned you, transforming your IT is never “over”. After the transformation is before the transformation and to keep up with ever-changing business goals and technical innovations, you have to keep an eye on your cloud portfolio. Continuous portfolio modernization can lead to significant benefits for an organization, such as increased cost-efficiency, more scalability, or the ability to innovate faster. So what are we suggesting? Keep a clear picture of your IT portfolio by continuously collecting and maintaining information about the existing applications and technology stacks. Continuously identify applications where modernization will reduce technical risk and costs while improving agility through cloud native technologies.
There are 4 steps to continuous modernization that have to be executed in a permanent loop:
Curious for more details on continuous cloud modernization? Read more about target architectures & migration planning, head over to this blog article "Cloud-to-Cloud Assessment and Cost comparison", watch this short continuous modernization video or read our whitepaper:
If you liked this condensed overview of the phases of a cloud transformation, we’d recommend you to check out our YouTube Channel or to head over to our blog for up-to-date cloud knowledge articles.
To have a tool guiding you through all these different phases can be a real game-changer for a cloud transformation. Txture offers guidance and facilitating features for every single transformation phase. Read more about what Txture can do for you on our phase-specifc pages:
Or reach out to our experts directly: