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Sarah UKFast | Account Manager

Leveraging the power of the cloud

10 November 2020 by Laura Valentine

Download our Buyer’s Guide: Leveraging the Power of the Cloud

With organisations turning away from traditional, on-prem solutions, cloud adoption is soaring to new levels. Earlier this year, IDG reported that 81% of businesses have at least one application, or a portion of their infrastructure, in the cloud. As Covid hit, the uptake of cloud-based solutions was boosted yet again, accelerating the digital transformation of companies across the globe.  

As businesses continue to realise the potential of the cloud, it’s becoming increasingly important to recognise that not all cloud solutions are created equal. When it comes to cloud, one size doesn’t fit all – and there’s a lot to consider if you truly want to leverage the full power of cloud technology. 

Have a clear vision 

It might seem obvious but, if you’re going to maximise the potential of your solution, it needs to be developed with your business objectives firmly in mind. While many businesses take the leap and move into the cloud, few truly embrace the transition. Before you even begin to migrate, you need to fully understand not only the current needs of your business, but the direction you’re heading and what your future needs may be. 

Make sure you’re aware of all your options and a find a partner who can advise on all the different routes into the cloud. Digital transformation doesn’t have to come all at once – perhaps it’s better for your business to consider a hybrid approach? This would allow you to begin to transition some of your workloads onto the cloud, whilst keeping others on-prem. There are many options out there and it’s easier to navigate with the right provider on your side.  

Pay close attention to the details – many cloud providers offer bespoke solutions but fail to be exact in their execution. Working with a managed cloud provider can provide the analysis, insight and innovation required. Look for a partner who takes a truly consultative approach, working alongside you to identify the precise needs and goals of your business in order to create a solution that will drive your success.  

The right partner can be relied on to find the perfect solution for your business, mixing customisation with standardisation to keep costs down and complexity low. Moreover, with the right partner, you should gain new understanding of the potential of the cloud and the opportunities it presents your business.

Optimise at every stage 

Standing in between your business and where you want to be is the task of overcoming the way things have always been done. Legacy systems, applications designed for physical infrastructure, traditional processes – these are only some of the obstacles you face when you embark on migration. Simply lifting applications and shifting them onto the cloud might work as a quick fix, but it almost certainly won’t make best use of your available resources.  

According to Gartner, between now and 2024 nearly all legacy applications migrated to public cloud will need to be optimised if they are to become more cost-effective. Once again, expert advice and knowledge becomes invaluable. Consult with a specialist to learn which of your processes need to be adapted and how, and discover the efficiencies that come with best practice solutions.  

Without making the right optimisations early on in your transition you run the risk of being hampered in your growth further down the line. If your solution isn’t correctly engineered in the first place, you can end up paying for remedial work later. Work with a partner who has the expertise and knowledge to optimise your systems at every step, and who can make your solutions portable – an important consideration for future growth and those who want autonomy over their business’ evolution.  

Gain access to the right skills 

Of course, it goes without saying that you can’t leverage the cloud’s full potential unless you have someone on your side who knows what they’re doing. The repercussions of a gap in the skillset can range from delayed migration through to misconfiguration – which can bring with it huge security risks. In fact, Gartner has also predicted that through to 2022, insufficient cloud skills will delay 50% of enterprise IT organisations’ cloud migration by two years or more.  

Selecting a partner with the right skills is important, but you need to go beyond this, especially if you have limited expertise in-house. It’s advisable to seek a partner that can become an extension of your IT team, who can offer your teams training and enhance their knowledge, all whilst engineering a solution that accounts for performance, cost optimisation and security.  

Set up for success 

Deciding to migrate is the easy step; doing it well takes extra consideration. It’s true that digital transformation can bring operational benefits, scalability and cost savings, but only if you leverage the technology to maximise returns. If you’re not sure where to start, consider vendors who offer managed cloud services with the expert advice to guide your cloud journey.  

Find out about managed cloud services from UKFast and how we can help you at any stage of your cloud journey

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