Blog: Cloud

Creating a Successful Azure Cloud Migration Strategy: Common Mistakes and Best Practices

February 14, 2023 - by Synoptek

Organizations on the digital transformation path are increasingly advancing to the cloud to boost efficiency and scalability. Many are turning to Microsoft Azure as their preferred cloud platform because of the compelling benefits it offers.

Yet, organizations make several mistakes while crafting their Azure Cloud Migration strategy. This makes the migration process tedious (and overwhelming). Businesses need to be proactive in addressing these challenges to build a robust strategy.

Read on as we explore the missteps in crafting an Azure cloud migration strategy. Learn the practical solutions to help organizations conquer these obstacles and achieve a seamless migration.

Common Mistakes While Crafting an Azure Cloud Migration Strategy

Migrating in-house workloads, applications, and data to Azure Cloud can bring enticing rewards. From better availability to easier scalability, reduced operational costs to streamlined maintenance and management. A robust strategy enables organizations to have the necessary infrastructure and resources in place for a successful transition. But the pressure to become cloud-ready as soon as possible causes most companies to rush their efforts.

Let’s look at the top 5 mistakes organizations make while crafting their Azure Cloud migration strategy.

1. Opting for a standard strategy

Every organization is different and requires a tailored Azure Cloud migration strategy. Opting for a standard strategy, just because it is popular or economical, can be devastating. The strategy you build should be tailored exactly to your needs. This is important to achieve the desired business and technical outcomes.

Make sure to have deep knowledge of your business goals and your application portfolio. This is essential to have end-to-end visibility into the TCO and ROI of migration.

2. Not performing a cloud readiness assessment

A cloud migration strategy should depend on the organization’s current state and its ability to move to the cloud. In a hurry to quickly move workloads, many organizations take the easy route. They steer clear of performing a detailed cloud readiness assessment – which can result in detrimental outcomes.

Assessing existing culture, skills, and tech stack and pitting them against a cloud maturity model is fundamental to migration.

3. Not prioritizing workloads

One of the most common mistakes enterprises make in their Azure Cloud migration strategy is not prioritizing their workloads. Simply moving all workloads to the cloud without understanding their criticality or importance can jeopardize the entire migration effort. 

Every workload is unique and requires a tailored migration plan. Many may also be irrelevant and need to be retired or replaced. If you want to address your entire application portfolio effectively, you should first make a list of important workloads. You should then develop a plan for migrating, testing, and adjusting the strategy as needed.

4. Not being cautious of the architecture

When migrating to Azure Cloud, you should be cognizant of the architecture of the source and destination platforms. A poor understanding can lead to building a roadmap and using tools that aren’t fit for purpose. Ultimately, this will tend to impact the effort and cost of migration.

When you craft an Azure Cloud migration strategy, rehost, re-platform, or re-architect existing apps as required. This is important to ensure a seamless transition – without impacting application availability or day-to-day operations.

5. Downplaying security

A migration strategy needs to have clear and documented processes for securing data in the cloud. Cloud security is a shared responsibility, and your cloud provider will offer a bunch of basic security measures.

But the Azure Cloud migration strategy you craft should specify roles and responsibilities. This will ensure your teams and your provider are aware of their duties and obligations. You should also ensure all data and applications you move to the cloud comply with industry standards and regulations.

Tips and Best Practices

Migrating to the cloud, no matter how critical, can be daunting for many organizations. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Crafting the right strategy can allow you to migrate to Azure and capitalize on its benefits successfully.

Here are some tips to embrace to get the best results and ROI from your Azure Cloud migration:

  • Make crafting a migration strategy the single most important element of your migration plan. Don’t simply adopt a “popular” approach. Instead, take the time to assess your current business needs, tech infrastructure, culture, mindset, and challenges. Then build a strategy that addresses each of these elements in detail.
  • Carry out a detailed evaluation of current workloads and understand the maturity and importance of each workload. Performing such a deep discovery for every instance can give you a better idea of where you currently stand. It will also throw light on the cloud migration approach you should take for your unique workloads.
  • Evaluate the skills and capabilities of your in-house team to understand their ability to build a practical cloud strategy. Engage with an expert cloud migration partner to have skilled resources and craft a successful migration strategy.
  • Make sure to design your cloud migration strategy with milestones, clear goals, and reasonable durations for each task. Also, have a deep understanding of possible risks (and solutions) should things go awry during a workload migration.
  • Maintain a focus on security and governance from the very beginning. Make a list of security requirements and clarify roles and responsibilities early on for end-to-end transparency.
  • Develop in-house expertise if possible. Or better still, engage with a Cloud Services Partner to build a compelling strategy and ensure a seamless migration process.

The road to the cloud is laden with unsuccessful or delayed migrations. Just having a clear intention for cloud migration won’t take you far. What you need is a deep understanding of why migration is necessary for your unique business.

Take Charge of Your Azure Cloud Migration

Microsoft Azure allows organizations to lay the foundation of innovation. But the success of your cloud transformation and migration hinges on the quality, feasibility, and robustness of your migration strategy. Being aware of common mistakes and possible solutions can ensure a quick, seamless, and successful migration process.

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