As cloud computing has become more popular, many companies have come to take the migration process for granted. However, moving various apps and services into a cloud environment still presents numerous challenges, especially as every cloud is a little bit different. With major vendors, such as Microsoft, Google and Amazon all offering their own ecosystems, every cloud migration ends up being distinct from the one that came before. Companies can't afford to take a transition to the cloud for granted, and must instead plan carefully and train staff to handle any challenges that may arise.
Cloud migrations aren't always easy. In fact, an InfoWorld report explained that the rate of cloud migration failure is actually increasing. This rise was evident in an Innotas study and stems, according to InfoWorld, from the fact that many businesses transitioning an app or data set to the cloud are still doing for the first time. Whether you are going into your first cloud migration or taking on a new project that offers unique difficulties, it is key to understand some of the major reasons why cloud initiatives end up failing. Here are three of the most prominent ones:
Problem 1: Rushing into projects
InfoWorld pointed out that many organizations send IT experts work to complete a cloud migration as quickly as possible, setting up timelines that aren't feasible and creating excess pressure. While the cloud is capable of accelerating IT operations, there is still plenty to think about and manage, especially during a first-time migration for an app or system.
Network World echoed this sentiment, highlighting that excessive urgency can cause organizations to get out ahead of themselves. In some cases, a business will get so excited by the value offered by the cloud that they start to ramp up migration across the business, rushing the process. This causes projects to stagnate as teams aren't comfortable with the cloud and don't have time to fully understand its implications before they migrate mission-critical systems.
The solution: Organizations can take a two-pronged approach to avoid rushing in their transition to the cloud. The first is to train IT experts on the cloud ecosystem you're moving into. For example, if you want to port a database into a Microsoft cloud, seek out Microsoft-certified training programs and develop your staff. From there, project management training can help your leaders gain a stronger understanding of how to set expectations and manage timelines effectively.
Problem 2: Neglecting communication
The consumerization of IT has led to a situation in which non-tech users are often empowered to roll out cloud services as they need them. Network World reported that this is particularly evident in the rise of shadow IT, and companies need to open up lines of communication between business and tech teams. In many cases, migration efforts fail because executives aren't giving IT leaders clear expectations about business goals and IT is left unable to adequately specify project requirements.
The solution: This is one problem that calls out for strong project management expertise. A well-trained project manager can serve as a mediator between business and IT leaders, understanding the needs and challenges of both groups and ensuring a cloud migration remains focused on the right priorities.
Problem 3: Lack of support for staff
Working in the cloud often presents entirely new and unique challenges to a business compared to a traditional IT environment. Network World explained that companies often neglect to invest in the underlying support systems and tools that come into play when transitioning to the cloud. IT training, time spent discussing business goals and a clear awareness of the cloud service model stack are all critical in properly supporting the IT team as it moves systems into the cloud.
The solution: IT training programs that cover a wide range of specializations can play a large part in moving to the cloud. Having a holistic staff training strategy in which employees are tasked with gaining expertise in specific, but relevant, areas can lead to the broad departmental knowledge needed to handle a move to the cloud.
While investments in professional development can't guarantee a successful migration to the cloud, they can certainly improve the likelihood of success and prepare your staff to respond to issues that arise along the way. Whether you're an IT pro looking to get a cloud-focused job or an executive trying to train your staff, New Horizons can help. Contact us today if you want to learn more about our cloud-related IT training programs.