Cloud Migration Process: It’s Never ‘Done’

Joshua HaynesCloud Migration

Cloud Infrastructure is the Exact Opposite of “Set it and Forget it”

The cloud migration process is merely the first part of managing your cloud infrastructure. Seeing success on the cloud requires an evolving skill set and willingness to embrace change.

To recap, we have so far addressed two key factors in making sure your migration to the cloud is successful:

  1. The absolute requirement of security
  2. Proper alignment between your business strategy and all teams involved

Cloud Migration Process Key Factor 3: Skill Sets

Migrating to the cloud can be a daunting effort.  We have seen many people jump into the cloud without first considering if they have the skill sets to do so.

Technology is ever changing.  Do not expect to migrate to the cloud and leave your configuration intact for the long term.  It will change, and it will be required to change as AWS shifts its technologies year after year. The price of staying static can, literally, be quite high-- AWS charges more for using older technology.  

An example of this is something that those who are experienced with AWS can see year-over-year.  AWS actually increases the instance costs of EC2 compute resources for older generations.  Customers using older EC2 instance types will notice that each year the per-hour instance cost will slightly increase.  

The latest generation of EC2 compute is usually the most appealing because of up-to-date specifications as well as lower cost.  This makes the latest generation of instance types actually the most beneficial, both from a cost and performance perspective.  So if you don’t stay up-to-date, you will pay more over time, for less than up-to-date compute resources!   

Cloud Migration Process

New AWS Services Need to Be Evaluated Often… or Your Cloud Technology will be Left Behind

AWS is constantly adding services as well as changing them.  To attempt to keep up with this amount of delta, you can follow “What’s New at AWS?”  and the AWS News Blog.  Just browsing through the blogs, you will see that the amount of technologies that are changing would take a full-time job just to read about them.   

All this to say, “The cloud will move on regardless of your team’s skill sets.”

What Skill Sets are Needed for the Cloud Migration Process?

I’m sure you are wondering WHAT skill sets we are talking about.  

First, and very importantly, we need to make something very clear:  You need people who can manage, troubleshoot, maintain, and improve your cloud infrastructure.  You cannot simply hire a team of app developers for your cloud migration and expect that to be enough. 

Even some development firms will try to sell you that myth.  Do not fall for it.  You need more than just programmers.  You need systems people who understand operating systems, networking, security, performance analysis, database administration, systems administration, etc. Developers are not, and SHOULD NOT BE, administrators.  “DevOps'' does not mean “Developers doing Operations.”   

The type of people you DO need are people with job titles such as Site Reliability Engineers, Cloud Solutions Architects, and Cloud Support Engineers.   These people may have some development experience (and should these days), but the priority should be on the skills below:

  • Automation technologies: Gone are the days of clicking and hand-jamming each system into place
Cloud Migration Process

How Can Your Team Manage the Cloud Migration Process and Beyond? 

So what should you do to ensure you can keep up and make sure your cloud migration is successful in the long term?  The simple answer is to have a team that has the technical expertise needed to keep moving forward with the ever-shifting cloud landscape.   Easy peasy right?  Wrong.  

If you are a large business, you can typically staff this team and spend quite a bit of money on salaries and turnover, to make sure you have enough expertise to ensure you stay up-to-date.  Even then, you’ll run into creating a team of people that only know how to maintain your current environment and are able to offer little on-going innovation. They are usually only exposed to how you’ve always been doing it, and are not necessarily privy to innovations that come from being exposed to multiple ways of doing things.  

Startups or small businesses really need to rely on outside resources.  The sheer amount of expertise needed to reliably support a cloud environment is typically more than a startup or small business can provide from within their own ranks.  

AWS Partners Have the Skill Sets for the Cloud Migration Process

Allow me to briefly and shamelessly plug Bloomip.  As an AWS Partner, this is what we do.  We have the knowledge, diverse expertise, and certifications required to make your cloud migration process successful and optimally manage your infrastructure. 

Feeling a little overwhelmed about migration? Start a conversation with the Devoted Experts of Bloomip and contact us.


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