Five Questions You Need To Ask Before Migrating to the Cloud

It is important to consider all aspects of the move in order to determine if a cloud migration makes sense for your business.

October 20, 2014 by Alex Collins, IT Services Consultant

cloud migration

Many businesses today are considering migrating to the cloud for a variety of reasons. Whether it is an anticipated cost savings or working to better secure critical data, moving to the cloud should not be a decision made in haste. It is important to consider all aspects of the move in order to determine if a cloud migration makes sense for your business.

Here are five questions you need to ask before migrating your business to the cloud:

  1. How secure is your cloud? Security is a major concern today, regardless of the type of business. It seems like you hear about another network breach on the news every week. The truth is the cloud can be incredibly secure, if it is designed properly. It is important to understand what encryption and security measures are in place in the cloud hosting provider. Make sure to ask about security patches and hardware maintenance plans. Some Service Providers are more helpful during audits as well if you are subject to compliance requirements so this is something else you should consider.

  2. What is the backup and recovery process? It is important to understand how a cloud service provider will keep your data and applications safe. What is the backup process? And just as important, how easy is it to get your data back if needed? What is the time frame in which a recovery can be completed? How easily can you extract your data should you decide to make a decision to leave in the future?

  3. What is your SLA and what technical support solutions do you offer? Every cloud service provider should have an SLA (service level agreement) that outlines uptimes, security provisions, audits, and the like. Make sure you understand all aspects of the SLA and how it affects your business. If you do not have an on-site IT team, can the cloud service provider help manage your cloud resources and provide support when needed? If you are in a regulated industry, such as healthcare, it is important to ask if the cloud service provider has experience supporting the needs of that industry.

  4. What type of cloud option makes the most sense for my business? There are several different cloud options available – public, private, and hybrid. A public cloud is a “multi-tenant environment,” where you “rent” a portion of server space in a cloud environment that is shared with a number of other clients or tenants. A private cloud is a “single-tenant environment” where the hardware, storage, and network are dedicated to a single client or company. A hybrid cloud is a computing environment that is a mix of resources that are kept in-house and other resources are kept in the cloud externally. A cloud service provider should be able to provide guidance as to the best design for a specific business.

  5. What is the cost? Of course cost is always a factor when deciding on any new expenditure. It is always a good idea to do a cost analysis and see what could be saved by migrating IT resources to the cloud. When comparing delivering your IT services out of a data center instead of a typical corporate office, the numbers will not always show moving to the cloud is less expensive. When looking over your IT balance sheet, make sure to consider the costs associated with maintaining server hardware and other resources, backup storage, media, and server room real estate including battery backup, UPS, generator, etc. This all should be weighed against the cost of the initial cloud migration, ongoing support, and other costs outlined in the cloud service provider’s proposal.

These are just a few of the considerations when deciding on a move to the cloud. It is important to understand everything associated with a cloud migration and how it will potentially affect your business. Ultimately, it is important to have confidence in the selected cloud service provider as you are selecting not just a vendor, but a new business partner.

The All Covered Difference

All Covered is here to work with you to set up, configure and monitor your cloud computing technology. Our goal is to protect your company’s data by implementing a solid IT infrastructure. Contact us today at (866)446-1133 for more information or to schedule a consultation.

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