Here at VNT, we’re in the business of visibility. Looking at a clear view of cloud migration in today’s business and IT world is a great way to get an understanding of trends and behaviors. While more than 93% of respondents told Commvault that they are moving some of their processes to the cloud, just 56% say that they are either already cloud-only, or have plans to be. This means that 44% of businesses work in a hybrid cloud reality, either by accident or design.
This is an important metric to understand, as in order for cloud adoption to work, your people need to be on board. If your cloud strategy is patchy, led by two or three over-excited forward thinkers or siloed to one or two departments, it’s much less likely to succeed overall.
Open Dialogue to Ensure Opportunistic Quick Wins
Firstly, think about how cloud adoption is viewed in your organization. At its core, the cloud is there to solve problems, to make feature releases quicker and more straightforward, to scale faster and more affordably, to use Business Intelligence and Machine Learning to do more with data. These are positives that can be leveraged by any department or industry, and yet many people think that the cloud has nothing to do with them.
Educating your staff to take an interest and step forward with their current challenges to see how cloud adoption can help is one of the first steps to getting everyone on board. Make it personal. Ask your employees what they would do if they could wave a magic wand.
The first migration of applications to the cloud is most successful when it’s ‘opportunistic’. By that, we mean when it has clear value that can help you get buy in from board-level, or is so obviously good for the business that employees of all levels can see the benefits.
Ensure Early Success by Forecasting Ahead of Time
Knowing what these applications are can be complicated in and of itself, and involves having deep visibility of your network traffic overall so you can identify the problems you’re having on premises or in a hybrid ecosystem.
You also need to be certain that your initial migration has low risk. If you migrate applications to the cloud, and end up surprised by application dependencies that you were unaware of, you’re going to find that employees associate cloud adoption with frustration and delay, especially with the less technical stakeholders who you really need to be “all in.”
On the other side of the coin, if you have ensured that the applications you choose do not have unique dependencies, are uncoupled from other services, and are not particularly sensitive to uptime or latency requirements, you’re much more likely to experience and early win for your cloud strategy. Once business stakeholders see the benefits, they will be much more willing to accept more complexity with the next migration.
Give your Enterprise One Clear View of Your Entire Network
Communication is key, and that’s one of the reasons why so many cloud projects fail when they don’t have visibility at the start. Culture is very important to a company, and the cloud comes with a whole new culture to get used to. In fact, it often comes hand in hand with DevOps practices such as Agility, Failing Fast, and a continuous cycle of planning, testing, releasing and change.
If these ideas are new for your enterprise, then one forward-thinking department is not going to be able to change everything alone. In fact, they will likely come up against irritation and stumbling blocks at every stage.
Using an interactive map of your ecosystem can make all the difference, especially when speaking to less technical stakeholders. First, you can share a physical representation of the low-risk nature of the changes you’re proposing to help get initial buy-in. After migration, you can easily share company-wide the changes you’ve made and the positive effects on speed, scale, or cost.
Many businesses struggle to prove the benefits of the work they’ve just achieved, making it impossible to get budget for the next stages. As the cloud is a continuous journey – this is like falling at the second hurdle, after a whole lot of initial leg work just to get into the race. Remove this issue with maps that show both before and after metrics, or the comparison of current post migration data with baseline information collected at the start.
The technology is already out there to make a real difference to your business, waving a magic wand at the problems that you struggle with every day. At the core, it’s going to be people that hold you back – not technology. Education and buy-in start with visibility, and real-time discovery solutions don’t come with better visibility for cloud migration planning than VNT.
Interested in seeing how it works in practice? Get in touch.