One of the most common migration types that we execute for our clients is the on-premise to cloud migration. This is because there are still many organizations that depend on legacy on-prem infrastructure, databases, and applications. Sometimes, it feels safer to stick with what you have rather than make a big change.

However, because cloud computing technology and services have improved so much, the decision to migrate is getting easier. Today’s cloud services providers offer robust migration support, migration planning solutions, and common strategies. Plus, once on the cloud, taking advantage of modern technologies, like AI/ML, data lakes, and serverless infrastructure, is often as simple as activating a pre-built service.

In this blog post, we explain what an on-premise to cloud migration entails and why it’s one of the best ways to enhance IT performance. We’ll also point you toward some helpful resources you can use to plan ahead.

What is an On-premise to Cloud Migration?

An on-premise to cloud migration refers to moving data and applications into a cloud environment from an in-house data center. In other words, teams opt out of self-managing certain aspects of their IT in exchange for Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) or Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) solutions delivered by cloud service providers.

On-premise to cloud migrations are different from cloud-to-cloud migrations where data moves from one cloud environment to another. On-premise to cloud migrations may result in multi-cloud or hybrid cloud setups, depending on the desired end state. These migrations can take anywhere from several weeks to many months.

On-premise to cloud migrations can be intimidating for those with limited migration experience. As with any major IT transition, there is always the possibility that something could go wrong and disrupt day-to-day operations. However, migrating to the cloud in the current day and age is tremendously compelling for forward-looking organizations.

Why Move from On-Premise to the Cloud?

There are many reasons to move from on-premise infrastructure to the cloud. First, IT teams can automate time-consuming software and hardware management. By offloading this work to a cloud service provider, teams are able to focus more on innovation and development. And things like application life cycles, contracts, and old equipment aren’t nearly as concerning.

Additionally, the cloud offers virtually unlimited scalability under pay-as-you-go pricing plans. Organizations can spin up or wind down infrastructure as needed to meet market demand in real-time. In many cases, this on-demand pricing reduces the total cost of ownership.

The cloud is also an engine for growth. Teams can collaborate securely and efficiently using off-the-shelf, next-gen technology. Moreover, refactoring legacy applications into microservices and adopting serverless workflows is painless. In other words, the cloud provides countless ways for organizations to update legacy IT processes, improve flexibility, and harness the power of modern technologies built for the digital era.

How to Migrate from On-premise to the Cloud

The key to a successful on-premise to cloud migration is first going through a careful migration planning process:

  • What are your specific migration goals?
  • What migration approach do you want to take?
  • Where do you have cloud readiness gaps?
  • What infrastructure do you want to leave on-premise?

It’s difficult to answer questions like these without first conducting a thorough migration readiness assessment. You should clearly understand your current infrastructure costs and what you stand to gain by migrating to the cloud. You should also know your existing dependencies, where you have the potential to make improvements, and how the cloud can create value for your business.

After all, migrating to the cloud is no small endeavor. To make the time and energy investment worthwhile, it’s important to consider all the ways the cloud can benefit your organization. It’s also crucial to mitigate risks – data loss, downtime, etc. – that could tarnish your brand. The cloud should elevate your services, not hurt your reputation with customers.

Given the high-stakes nature of any migration, it makes sense that so many leaders choose to bring in a third-party migration expert to support the transition. At ClearScale, we specialize in AWS cloud migrations. We are an AWS Premier Tier Services Partner with 11 AWS competencies, including the Migration competency. We’ve helped organizations in numerous industries migrate and modernize legacy on-premises infrastructure on the AWS cloud.

What separates us from other migration service providers is that we help teams think through the best way to accomplish their enterprise goals, rather than simply implementing technical solutions. We approach every on-premise to cloud migration as an opportunity to achieve a tangible outcome, whether it be boosting IT performance, reducing infrastructure costs, or reaching some other goal.

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