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5 steps for preparing your firm for a migration to cloud computing services

So, you’ve finally taken the plunge and decided it’s time to move your company’s digital services to a cloud computing provider. Well done – you’ll be in good company. Some of today’s most innovative and successful firms have already moved to cloud computing services and are taking advantage of cutting-edge tech combined with reduced overheads and true IT flexibility.

However, while a shift to a cloud provider will undoubtedly improve your working practices and transform your firm’s digital services, making the change requires preparation and the formulation of a plan. Even the most professional provider will benefit from your input and from you having a clear idea of what you hope to achieve. 

  1. Involve as many stakeholders as possible

Moving to the cloud will completely transform how your employees work, improving access to digital resources and very likely changing work processes. For this reason, you should look at gaining insight from all those involved in making the migration a success. While no one wants to get bogged down unnecessarily with too many opinions, you should still at least have a clear understanding of how your departments currently work, the software they rely on most and have a deep knowledge of internal processes.

2. Assign a migration team leader

While involving all stakeholders is essential, very few projects get off the ground without having a team leader (or leaders). Ideally, this should be your IT department but, if you don’t have anyone internal with that level of knowledge, at least make sure you assign someone that has a strong knowledge of your firm and how it operates and can explain this to your potential cloud provider, like

3. Work out what to move and what to keep locally

Not all software applications work well in the cloud – moreover, oftentimes you’ll find apps that simply don’t need to be migrated. Take some time to study in-depth how you and your team currently use software in your organization, then work out what to migrate.

4. Find a cloud provider that fits your firm and your requirements

Just as with other areas of life, not all cloud providers are created equal and some may fit your firm and your needs better than others. As a general rule, you should look for a provider that has knowledge of your industry – or is, at the very least, capable of quickly ascertaining your requirements.

Remember, cloud providers work with a huge range of firms so it’s quite likely you’ll be able to find one that has previous knowledge of your industry (although you may want to avoid working with a company that’s worked with your competitors).

5. Prepare a plan and timeline with milestones

Having a plan on how you intend the migration to happen plus deadlines will help keep everyone on track with the move. This should also be carefully coordinated with your choice of provider so everyone knows exactly what’s expected of them – and when. Most cloud companies will be able to offer extensive advice on these aspects, plus provide a clear outline of how your precious data and apps are to be migrated.

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