By Nils Solvang, Managing Partner

177578_4d26b1b1f6f542558e7f3565848a71f7Cloudification, the process of moving IT to the Cloud is a fast growing trend. There may be a number of drivers, like exasperation with the unpredictable cost of maintaining in-house IT, desire for ubiquitous secure access to your data and applications or just a recent experience of data-loss due to hardware failure.  For whatever good reason, you now find yourself wondering what moving to the Cloud really means.  Will it solve my problem? How will it work?  What are the benefits?  What will it cost to implement and run and how will it impact the day-to-day operation of my business whilst the migration is going on?

These are all valid questions, but since no two business are alike they will have distinct answers depending on your business’ particular circumstances.  The answers are normally best found in a discussion between someone well aware of current Cloud technology and someone who knows exactly how the business currently operates and wants to evolve.  Luckily, there is no need to do a ‘big bang’ migration to the Cloud overnight.  Most business will go through, and maybe stay in, a hybrid scenario where some services are in the Cloud and some remain in-house. The main thing is to maintain a strategic view on how to prioritise services to be cloudified.

If you run a business with an Internal IT department, you may find that IT are increasingly occupied with day-to-day operational fire-fighting at the expense of developing new services. This will often cause friction with business units urgently requiring new systems and functionality. Cloud services can be an excellent solution in such situations due to its availability and often a good range of generic functionality.  An organisational disconnect may evolve where the business unit does not engage with internal IT and purchases Cloud services where Cyber Security and Integration issues are not properly researched, thereby increasing risk and cost. Sometimes external help can bridging the gap between IT and the business units and provide a thorough assessment of the current state of play.

Regardless of whether your hand has been forced or not, you may want to start taking charge of your business IT evolution by defining a strategy, or more simply put, creating a prioritised list of services that should be moved to the Cloud.  Let’s be clear, Cloud is not the answer every time and the vast majority of businesses have evolved a hybrid of on premise and cloudified services that best meet their unique needs.

At CloudCIO, we hold the view that commoditised services are most successfully cloudified. More often than not, we would recommend to our clients that they seriously consider starting by moving their office environment (Word processing, Spreadsheets, Presentations, email, document management etc.) to the Cloud.  Google and Microsoft have both been developing their Cloud offerings in these areas a long time and have both reached a good state of maturity.  Typical benefits are secure Cloud data storage (including built-in backup), mobile integration, fast on-boarding, near unlimited scalability and predictable ongoing IT costs.

Many businesses actually undertake this transition themselves, and through this Blog Mark Fincham, CloudCIO’s Chief Technology Partner will over the next few weeks publish our top tips for ensuring a successful migration.

We wish you the best of luck with running and growing your business, and hope your IT is fully supporting you in both aspects.

For informal discussion on Cloud Migration in particular contact CloudCIO

Watch out for our first top tip to be published in a week’s time.

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