Cloud computing has rapidly become one of the most important innovations of the internet age. While companies have been switching their infrastructure, data, and applications to the cloud at a steady rate over the past decade, the coronavirus pandemic put the process into overdrive: with millions of people working from home, cloud computing has become an essential tool for modern business.
According to TechJury, 61% of businesses migrated their workloads to the cloud in 2020: an astonishing number, but one that makes sense in the context of a globalized pandemic that made it more important than ever for businesses and their employees to be able to access secure networks from any geographic location.
But this rapid technological shift would likely never have been possible if it weren’t for the cloud migration and management experts working behind the scenes.
Overcoming Skepticism About the Cloud
For those who work in tech, it can be hard to understand why any business wouldn’t want to switch to the cloud. After all, cloud computing has been a big deal since at least 2006, and the advantages are as numerous as they are obvious.
But many businesses, and especially small- to medium-sized firms, have a hard time adapting to large-scale technological change. When it comes to the cloud, business owners tend to express four main concerns:
Loss of Control
This resistance reflects both the natural force of inertia and also a failure to fully understand what the cloud offers. Many business owners who know a great deal about the internal dynamics of their own industries don’t necessarily understand how the cloud can help them.
It wasn’t until the pandemic forced people to start thinking about the vulnerabilities of their current data storage protocols that businesses started to reconsider the benefits of cloud computing. And many were helped along in this by cloud migration and management experts.
The Challenges of Cloud Migration
Imagine for a moment that you are the owner of a small company that employs 100+ people. You have been using traditional servers for years, but have had to re-think your approach due to access and security issues related to working remotely.
Because you’ve been in business for years, you have a huge amount of data on your servers that you need ready access to in order to manage daily operations. You also use Google Drive for some items, and you’ve been relying on it more and more over the past year, but you’re worried about losing important data and the costs of buying more and more storage room are rising.
There’s also the question of how your employees can access the files they need, and how you can guarantee your sensitive information will stay secure.
You have an IT department that is advising you on the issue, but they have also been overwhelmed with day-to-day tasks, and you don’t have the personnel to put someone on the problem full-time. But you’ve decided that switching over to the cloud is the right move.
Unfortunately, this isn’t always as straightforward as it sounds. There are public, private, and hybrid clouds, and three basic service models for cloud computing:
Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS): servers and storage managed by a cloud vendor
Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS): servers and storage, as well as operation systems, database management, and development tools
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS): all of the above, in addition to cloud-hosted applications
In order to get the most out of the switch, it is necessary to understand the range of options that cloud computing makes available to you, and to make sure that in migrating your system, you are taking advantage of the full functionality cloud computing makes available to you.
All of these issues are barriers to cloud migration, and a lot of businesses are looking for someone who can help advise and manage the process for them, and who can provide support and security after the migration has been completed. This is where cloud migration and management service providers step in.
What Services Do Cloud Migration and Management Companies Provide?
With more and more companies moving toward infrastructure and data solutions based on cloud computing, many are opting to handle the transition by reaching out to cloud management services that can handle the process on their behalf.
Because different companies have different needs, the best cloud migration companies will start out with a strategy consultation that will help assess current infrastructure, data, and applications and explore which cloud deployment and service model will be most effective. At this point, a plan can be drawn up for how the migration process can move forward.
While it is possible to simply move a company’s infrastructure and data over to the cloud, cloud migration is also an excellent time for companies to revise their approach to infrastructure and data management. A company may have evolved certain organization systems that have become unwieldy and hard to manage over time, and before switching to the cloud, they may want to re-structure the architecture of their system.
The type of services provided will vary between cloud migration companies, but many will help optimize infrastructure design before the migration, and provide ongoing management and support after the migration has taken place. Others may specialize in turnkey solutions that help companies get their infrastructure and data moved over to the cloud as-is as soon as possible, or provide a combination of these different types of service.
Given all this, it isn’t surprising that many of the companies that have switched over to the cloud over the past year have done so with the advice, help, and guidance of cloud migration services and are currently drawing on the expertise of cloud management companies.
For people working in tech, it has been clear for a long time that the future is in cloud computing. The fact that businesses are finally catching up is due in no small part to the dedicated help and support of the burgeoning cloud migration and management industry.