The Shape of Today’s Cloud – 7 Things You Need to Consider
September 28, 2021
As kids (okay, and as adults too), we’d gaze at the shapes of clouds in the sky and talk about what they looked like to us. Today, in a technology context, the shape of your cloud takes on a whole new, and much more important, meaning when you’re talking cloud migration.
Whether you’re leaving your on-prem systems behind, or looking to jump from your current cloud set-up, you need to take a hard look at your prospective new cloud homes. Make sure you compare the qualities and benefits in each cloud provider, so you get the combination that’s right for your business goals – not all clouds are created equal.
Here are seven things to think about when you’re gazing at the tech clouds and contemplating migration:
1) Cost. As compared to on-premise, cloud saves you big money on hardware, maintenance and related infrastructure (like climate-controlled rooms). It also frees up IT staff to do more important work. Yet, among the big cloud service providers, things like optimized computing pricing; per second pricing; and available commitment discounts vary, as do data storage and movement costs. While these charges may seem similar on paper, you could save tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of dollars based on choosing the right cloud platform for how your business runs.
2) Scalability. Clouds are certainly scalable. But make sure you only pay for what you need; and know whether you have to purchase access or pay a scheduled fee to scale up or down.
3) Availability and redundancy. What’s the cloud vendor’s uptime guarantee? A 99.95 percent guarantee still means about ½ a workday down in total over a year. But – do uptime guarantees come with any additional costs associated with redundancy? Does it cost you more to get to 99.99 percent?
4) Security and Access. What’s the provider’s approach to security? Have there been any breaches? What enhanced measures are in place? On the flip side, can you access your data at any place (e.g., remotely), method (e.g., mobile) and time?
5) Compliance. Similar to security, does your provider meet all needed provisions for government regulations, like privacy regulations or PII protections? Especially consider the compliance regulations or certifications most important to your industry and company.
6) Compatibility. Again, not all clouds are created equal. There could be compatibility issues with operating systems, apps, image formats – issues you need to know about before you choose your provider, not in the middle of a migration.
7) Lock-in. You may have felt locked-in with your aging on-prem systems or the cloud set-up you’re looking to leave. Don’t let it happen again. Does the provider have high fees for data transition or transfer? Is there a claw back of those original commitment discounts? Know your exit strategy so the next move isn’t a surprise mix of costs and difficulties.
So, keep your eyes skyward and if you need help finding your right cloud shape, feel free to connect with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.