7 Best Practices for A Successful Cloud Migration

Jun 01 2022

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Making Your Cloud Migration a Success

Moving to the cloud is now essential for any business to thrive. Cloud has brought significant shifts by changing how business is conducted by becoming an enabler for organizations to go global with ease. According to Precedence Research, it is expected that the cloud computing market size will reach approximately $1615 billion by the end of 2023, which is roughly $453 billion. Based on these metrics, we can get a very clear idea about cloud migration benefits and why market size is significantly increasing can be generated.

There are plenty of reasons to migrate your applications to the cloud and reshape how IT is delivered across the company. For most companies, the cost reduction is enticing enough; however, the true impact of the cloud is that it increases business agility and staff productivity and promotes operational resilience.

Most companies are now investing in a defined cloud migration strategy to reinforce their digital journey. They are amplifying their efforts by modifying business models to be more innovative through several cloud solutions. However, this journey has its share of roadblocks and complexity if there's a lack of a proper approach. Hence, knowing the best practices can truly help to reduce the time and effort which is required to have a successful cloud migration strategy.  

Six Types of Cloud Migration Strategies

Before delving deeper into the best practices to achieve real-time success in a cloud migration strategy, let's quickly look into the different types of migration strategies.

Known as the "Six R's of migration," these are the six most common approaches:

Re-hosting ("lift and shift")

As the name suggests, this includes lifting and shifting the stack to the cloud. You send an exact copy of your existing environment without making significant changes for the quickest ROI. This strategy suits companies with no traditional culture and long-term plans.


This involves further adjustments to streamline the process and your landscape for the cloud. However, the core architecture of applications will be the same. This is an excellent strategy for traditional organizations that want to harness cloud capabilities.


This strategy helps get rid of obsolete apps for your business. Once you have evaluated your application for cloud readiness, you may find some outdated apps. In this case, you have the option to turn them off. This will help shift your focus to the apps crucial for business goals and consumer demands.


This cloud migration strategy involves shifting your applications to a cloud-native product such as a SaaS platform. Here, the challenge can be training your team on the new platform. Even then, this is one of the most cost-effective options.


Refactoring is re-creating and re-designing your applications from zero through coding. This is generally led by a business's need to maximize the cloud capabilities that are not yet available in the current environment, such as serverless computing. Refactoring is usually considered the priciest option and the most compatible with the subsequent advanced versions.


This cloud migration strategy helps know which applications aren't yet ready for shifting to the cloud but might need a quick revisit after completing your cloud migration process. In this case, you can retain the particular aspects of your IT solutions for the time being before they are ready to move to the cloud.

Best Practices for Delivering a Successful Cloud Migration

Cloud is no longer a technology that is "nice to have." It is an urgent mandate for businesses that aim for a successful digital transformation. Due to the significantly rising competition, companies have no choice but to try to beat this race by managing digitization in the most advanced way, i.e., through cloud migration. But it needs to be done correctly, securely, and rapidly.

Take ASTM International as an example. Known as a heavyweight in the standards industry, ASTM saw a shifting landscape that prompted them to rethink its approach to business to best confront the new future. They wanted to keep their value intact by deciding to become the SaaS solution for all standards industries. With Icreon's unique view into cloud technology and business, ASTM redefined its business operating tools to be more innovative and agile with an increased focus on end-user experiences.

However, a cloud migration service can't be a one-size-fits-all solution. Your cloud migration strategy can change depending on specific business objectives and demands. As our cloud engineering experts keep on helping several brands migrate to the cloud, we have shared seven best practices to make your cloud adoption strategy a success.

Best Practice #1 Take the Initial Step – Cloud Readiness Assessments

Don't simply move an application to the cloud without any specific reason. This may not result in anything significant. Hence, each application has to be assessed meticulously to understand what its cloud migration path looks like. This precision will bring the blind spots that will deliver a faster return on investment.

Start your journey with a cloud readiness assessment that will provide your organization with a crystal-clear vision and steps that are needed to adopt cloud. This assessment serves as an extremely valuable function to achieve cloud agility and elasticity which are being increasingly sought after by enterprises. To support your migration assessment, consider soliciting business goals and objectives for your cloud initiative. The point of having them is to ensure the many decision points along the cloud journey are being solved quickly with these goals in mind.

The next important step is to identify the potential of your team and skill gaps. After having an idea about your IT team’s knowledge base, you can either set up educational programs or opt for a strategic partner who can enable your team with the implementation of the migration. Next step is to evaluate your existing IT infrastructure as it helps in determining the feasibility of your cloud migration initiative. Additionally, you have to determine your operational readiness as this will help you to understand how equipped you're to handle the operational aspects of the cloud. Next is to determine the budget and calculate the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of the cloud with adequate planning.

Best Practice #2 Have a Cloud Migration Plan in Place

While looking to modernize applications and your organization is planning cloud migration, you don't want to repeat others' mistakes. Businesses need to consider a wide range of factors while planning a cloud migration. A successful migration involves solid planning and both leadership and executive staff need to be supportive throughout the process. To mitigate the growing pains the crucial step is to create a detailed plan that should contain the following elements: Workload Assessment and Prioritization, Platform selection, Cloud infrastructure selection, Micro execution plan, Macro executions plan, and Foundational architecture. Additionally, leaders need to communicate the sheer benefits of migration to both employees and customers, support training program, and discuss about the concerns.

Best Practice #3 Identify and Set Quantifiable Goals

The most important practice is to set quantifiable goals for initiating this cloud migration for your company. In general, quantifiable goals are those goals that trigger your business to progress faster with enhanced productivity than it would progress organically without migration. Consider these factors and gather an appropriate answer to each of these targets to ensure a successful migration upon the implementation of the strategy:

  • Calculate the current ROI for each application as well for the whole business over a specific period
  • Calculate and predict the expected ROI for each application and the whole business over a specific time
  • Set small, short time spans along with milestones to target in each
  • Identify the period within which you expect the complete implementation of the migration strategy
  • Research about the implementation costs and methods to cover those costs through the generated revenue after implementation
  • Identify the investment cost reductions that you expect after migration

Based on these factors, set aggressive goals for your organizations so you and your migration experts can remain focused. This way, you can bring the tangible expected organizational outcomes into reality and gain a wealth of experience since experience only solidifies the organizational case. 

Best Practice #4 Implementation is What Brings Strategy to Life

Here comes the time for real action. Once a carefully crafted plan is in place, it is time to implement the migration. Several factors have been considered to expedite the transition to the cloud while improving the value. Here, the crucial step is to build a Cloud Center of Excellence (CCoE), essentially a team of expert IT professionals overseeing the entire project and ensuring adherence to best practices and compliance requirements. The implementation phase also includes mapping out the inter-dependencies between multiple applications and implying a method to migrate them.

Best Practice #5 Operate and Optimize Your Cloud Environment

Once in production, it is essential to keep optimizing your environment. These are performed consistently -

  • Cost optimization
  • Process automation
  • Improve operational efficiency

Best Practice #6 Start with Small and Spot the Quick Wins

Accomplishing a few quick wins can have plenty of meaningful purposes, such as you will become confident from these successes as you learn more from experience. Eventually, this makes the opportunity for your ongoing transformation efforts.

Best Practice #7 Keep Data Integrity and Service Continuity Intact

Managing the entire cloud migration strategy involves high risk as critical and sensitive data can be exposed. Ensure that automated controls are delivering similar outcomes with any disruption.

Also, make sure to develop a plan for service continuity during the implementation of cloud migration.

Acquire Business Success through Cloud Migration

With tried and tested best practices, a successful cloud migration strategy will need the right expertise to move workloads to the cloud. It demands intrinsic knowledge, relevant skill sets, deep experience, and a dynamic plan that is detailed and carefully crafted. To ensure cloud capability is infused throughout your organization, starting with a reliable cloud migration service provider is essential.

If you have questions about cloud solutions or want a customized discussion based on your organization's workloads, our cloud migration experts are here to help. Explore Icreon's cloud migration & modernization to ensure the best migration strategy for your business.