Migrating your business to Microsoft Azure is a major milestone. After the move, you can look forward to faster processes, greater security and accessibility, and lower costs for your IT budget. However, these benefits don’t kick in until after you go through the daunting process of moving your entire IT infrastructure. Migrating to the cloud is a long and sometimes tedious process, but every step is crucial to the success of your business. The easiest way to proceed with your migration is to divide the work into clear stages. This will allow you to analyze your current system, set concrete goals for during and after the migration, and prepare your entire company for a successful transition. Learn how to better navigate the road ahead with this guide that breaks down the Azure migration process.
Step 1: Assess Your Current Infrastructure
You can’t perform a migration until you have a clear picture of your current infrastructure. Take the time to catalogue all your existing workloads and applications. Identifying these will help you prepare every detail of your infrastructure for a successful transition. While this process may be tedious, it’s better than forgetting about workloads and having to deal with them halfway through the migration process. As you assess your current setup, take note of your current capacities and capabilities. This information will help you make smart decisions about what areas of improvement you should focus on as you design and implement your new infrastructure.
Choose the Right Storage Solution
Storage is a key factor in your IT infrastructure. Migrating to the cloud is a great opportunity to expand your capacities and fix issues that haven’t been addressed yet. As you analyze your storage needs, divide your data into hot and cold categories. Hot data is information that employees need to access regularly. Cold data, on the other hand, doesn’t need to be as regularly accessible. Categorizing your information this way allows you to create a multi-level storage solution. Keep hot data in fast and accessible storage, while cold data remains in slower and more affordable solutions. This will help you organize information and optimize the cost of your storage system.
Step 2: Create Your Migration Strategy
Once you have a better idea of your current infrastructure, you can make a detailed migration strategy that sets your company up for success. This is the time to decide what your new infrastructure will look like, which tools you want to use, and what the migration process will look like. Do you want to take a migration or a modernization approach? Migration is the best approach for time-sensitive migration triggers, while modernization best serves specific, business-critical workloads that will see continued investment.
As you plan your migration, establish clear goals for both your immediate migration and in the months and years after your transition. Short-term goals help you prioritize immediate needs for a smooth transition. Long-term goals, on the other hand, create a vision for improvement and help define the path you need to take to help your business continuously grow within the cloud.
Partner With the Professionals
Designing the ideal cloud solution for your business takes time and expertise. With so many applications, tools, and services to choose from, the decisions before you can be daunting. While knowledge of cloud computing is essential, it also helps to have specific knowledge about Azure and the opportunities it offers your company. That’s why many companies choose to work with an Azure managed services provider to create their migration strategies. By working with dedicated Azure experts, you can design a sophisticated and customized structure that prioritizes the needs and goals of your company. Atmosera offers free Microsoft Azure migration services to help your business create and implement an effective Azure infrastructure.
Step 3: Prepare for the Move
Before you can put your plan into action, you must make a few key preparatory steps. Create clear landing zones for your workloads so that you can hit the ground running on the other end of your migration. Double check your timelines and funding to make sure everything is in place for a smooth transition. Finalizing details like these will help you move forward in the migration process with peace of mind.
Prepare Your Teams
Remember that it’s not just your tech you need to take care of. A cloud migration is a major change for everyone in your company, even if they have nothing to do with your IT department. Your teams need assurance and training to tackle the migration with confidence and success. Provide workshops and resources for your employees before implementation so that everyone is ready for the shift. Train management early so that they can offer a helpful hand when the rest of your staff starts learning their way around. Organized training and education efforts help your employees feel more at ease with the change. Even if things go wrong during migration, your people will have more confidence about what to do and how to handle their work while they learn the ropes of your new infrastructure.
Step 4: Migrate
With these preparatory steps of the Azure migration process broken down, you’re ready to make the transition to your new Azure infrastructure. Move your workloads in waves to keep the transition manageable for everyone. Automated tools help you perform the move as quickly and accurately as possible. This also frees your IT staff to focus on other technical issues or road bumps that occur along the way.
Focus On What You Can Do
Remember those short- and long-term goals mentioned above? These will be an essential guiding force throughout your transition. Migrating to Azure is a lot of work, but your goals will help you manage and prioritize your processes. This allows you to quickly meet your immediate needs, which simplifies the process and minimizes system downtime. Once you accomplish your short-term goals, you can move on to longer processes and goals that will do more for your business in the long run.
Step 5: Continue To Optimize
Running your cloud system is an ongoing process. You can’t just migrate and forget about it. After implementation, you must continue to think about software updates, workload optimization, and new tools that can continue to give you the most effective infrastructure possible. It’s also important to keep scalability in mind as you continue to manage your system. Your infrastructure should continue to evolve with your business as you grow. Ongoing management and optimization ensure that your cloud infrastructure continues to work for you no matter what the future holds.