The Enterprise Journey to Cloud (introduced in a previous blog), can bring a myriad of benefits to your enterprise, but the road to the cloud is not without many challenges, most of which are not foreseen initially, some of them are unexpected and some of them overlooked.
In general, you’ll have to prepare and train or reskill your IT staff, change some business processes regarding IT financials, modify your IT Governance to resemble the needs required by Cloud service and support procedures, redesign and rearchitect your security policies, guarantee your compliance regulations, and plan carefully whether you are going to adopt Cloud Services for new systems and applications or your migrations.
All of those challenges can be addressed and solved if there is a strong sponsorship and commitment from decision makers and upper management.
The adoption of cloud is a process that requires considerable effort for the entire enterprise, like in every disruption and change within companies, there will be natural resistance (some of them with reason, but also many of them will probably be excuses and objections to any new or change process), which is the usual reaction to any changes, both in personal and professional environments.
The move of systems, application and data to the Cloud will impact in many enterprise Business processes, in some roles, in the organization, and that´s why strong commitment from the management is a must. More than ever, technology and business agility are key aspects for enterprises growth and for survival in a strong and global competitive business landscape.
Management have to establish reasonable goals for adopting the cloud computing paradigm. Adoption or migration to the cloud requires a team effort to plan, design, and execute all the activities to move the application workloads and systems to the new IT based on consumption of Cloud services.
Below you can find an introduction to the most common technical and organizational challenges when adoption or migrating to the Cloud. Following two blog posts cover them with further details. This is an extract of the Cloud Migration Handbook Vol. 1
Technical Migration Challenges
From a technical perspective, a Cloud migration project can be quite simple or can be quite complex, depending on factors such as the migration scope and maturity and lifecycle of workloads being moved. The way to find out is to perform a very good process of discovery and Workload Analysis.
If you find (in your Discovery and Analysis phases) that technical challenges are low complexity, then the migration should be much easier and faster. However, as the level of complexity and the migration challenges are higher and bigger, you should expect increased time and effort required for successful migrations.
The main challenges that you are likely to find include:
- Dealing with Integration
- Data Gravity and Downtime
- Networking, connectivity and Latency
- Supported Platforms on Public -hyperscale- Cloud
- Understanding the technical differences between on-premises and Cloud-IT
Organizational Migration Challenges
Transitioning your IT to a Cloud or a hybrid model, and whether adopting, implementing or migrating to Cloud, challenges go beyond just the technical ones, which, with the right experience and maybe with external help and budget, can be achieved and accomplished successfully. It might seem paradoxical, but your organization might have some more trouble when dealing with those challenges coming from the organizational changes and the impact they might have.
In the third post of this series, I discuss with further details the most important ones that you can most probably have to deal with. Of course, the nature of your organization, such as if you are working for a private profit and customer facing enterprises, or for a public organization and institutions will have different angles and challenges.
The main organization challenges when adopting or migrating to the Cloud include:
- A New or Updated Governance Model for Cloud
- Service Management
- Lack of Internal Experience
- Enterprise Readiness for the Cloud
- Change Management
More detailed information about Migration Challenges can be found in the following posts (2 and 3) and in the first chapter of the Cloud Migration Handbook Vol. 1