Moving Your Business to the Cloud: What You Need to Know

Over the past few years, businesses have been benefiting from cloud hosting and cloud computing. Moving data and services to the cloud allows businesses to give their employees access to data no matter where they are in the world. It also allows them to use various services, software and applications without having to install anything, and removes the burden and complexity of storing data or installing the needed software themselves. If you are yet to switch to the cloud or are considering it, here are a few things you need to know to make a successful transition.

You Need to Learn the Language

Cloud computing is becoming increasingly complex by the day as more services and software and hardware offerings are introduced. To take full advantage of cloud computing, you need to learn the basics. Once you understand the basic languages used to describe software, hardware, and cloud services, you can go further to learn more advanced cloud computing concepts. This is especially important for business owners who want to know exactly what they will get or those who want to compare different cloud providers and their offerings.

Have a Clear Plan and Purpose

Moving to the cloud can be complicated and so it is best to have a precise plan for how it will be done and a reason you need cloud hosting services. Being able to explain both to your employees and other stakeholders will make it easy for everyone to get on board and to adapt to the new arrangement.

You should also consider tools that can show the need for the change and that you can use to explain why the move is necessary. Do note that moving to the cloud might require some reorganization to your business’s workflows, so prepare for that too beforehand.

Be Clear About What You Need

Being clear about what you need will make it easier to find a cloud partner who will be right for your business. For example, are you a media company that needs a lot of space for its videos and images? Are you a game development company that needs a lot of computing or graphical power? Are you thinking of offering software-as-a-service? Other considerations include the level of security, backups, scalability, geographical availability, and the software and applications you can use on the services. Having a clear idea of what you need will help you go through the options and providers a lot faster and find the best way easily and quickly.

Consider a Hybrid Model

For many businesses, the switch to cloud services often involves moving from on-premises hosting to cloud hosting. This means moving their existing entire software and hardware stack to a cloud platform. However, completely switching to a cloud-based model can be expensive for some businesses, in addition to these businesses having to offload the hardware they already have. Fortunately, there is a middle ground, which is the hybrid deployment method. 

The hybrid deployment method is a hosting model where half of the infrastructure is hosted on the cloud and the rest of it is hosted on-premises. Businesses can host many of the services that require a lot of space and computing power on the cloud while the rest of the services, like local networking and hosting sensitive files that do not have to be hosted on the cloud, are hosted locally.

By doing this, businesses can benefit from cloud hosting as well as the infrastructure they already have set up. While hybrid hosting is a great option for businesses that already have some existing infrastructure, businesses can also consider full cloud hosting, which is the most popular method for smaller businesses that do not have the funds to set up their own infrastructure or the staff to manage it.

To learn more about all the available cloud computing models as well as the different cloud deployment models, you can read the detailed guide provided by Virtasant for more information. Virtasant provides all the cloud hosting solutions businesses need, including cloud migration, cloud management as well as cloud optimization. They also have a global team of cloud experts to help businesses with their cloud needs, no matter where they are located.

Understanding the Pricing

For many businesses, the need to save some money often motivates the need to move to the cloud. To ensure that you save some money, it is important to understand the pricing models used by the different cloud hosting providers you are considering. These costs include the actual cost of the service (hardware and software) as well as what it will cost the business to transition (usually measured in the time your team needs to get up to speed).

Knowing what each part of the switch will cost can help you make the right decisions and make it easier to budget for the move.

Ask About Security

You are encouraged to take measures to protect your data, such as activating two-factor authentication or using a virtual private network. However, it is still important to ask the cloud provider about the measures they have put in place to protect your data. If possible, also ask them if they can provide training to your staff about security.

You Might Need to Train Your Staff

It is likely that if you are moving from an on-premises solution, your staff has not worked with the specific cloud provider you are considering. The good news is that most cloud providers provide training for your staff once you transition. Here, you also get help auditing how well your team is doing with the new system and any issues that need to be addressed.

Besides helping train your team on how to use the new service, you might have to train some of them in how to migrate data to the cloud in case there is no training available.

Transitioning to the cloud seems like a logical step for businesses that want to cut costs and streamline their operations. However, this is a delicate process that requires a lot of planning, patience, and, sometimes, training.