How to deal with challenges when migrating to the Cloud
Published 3 May 2021
A lot of organisations have been shifting to cloud ever since the pandemic began.
This raises the question of whether organisations are ready for adapting to the cloud environment and the challenges that come with it.
This was delved in detail at W.Media’s Digital Week South Asia panel discussion titled ‘Dealing with cloud migration challenges’. Moderated by Arun Gupta, Technology Advisor, Shalby Hospitals. The panellists included Shobhana Lele, CIO, The Bombay Dyeing Manufacturing Company Limited. Atanu Pramanic, CIO, Hindalco Industries Limited. Arivuvel Ramu, CTO, Tonik Bank and Ajay Meher, Group CIO, Ampersand Group.
Cloud migration is different for every organisation
“However, there is no magic formula every organisation has its own infrastructure and assessing that is extremely important,” said Shobhana Lele
She further underlined that the challenges faced by organisations while migrating to cloud are with regard to the availability and performance, ROI, cost, compliance.
These parameters are important to be figured out by an organisation before migrating to cloud.
“It is also important to carry out a cloud assessment. In the current times we have a number of cloud providers and various data centres with private cloud approaches. It is important to carry out the assessment to decide what fits your organisation the best,” added Lele
She further mentioned that it is important for the organisation to understand the ecosystem of the cloud service provider which the organisation decides to work with.
Giving an example of a cloud provider who may not have a good ecosystem with its supporting partners then the organisation might have to reconsider partnering with that provider. A good ecosystem is important because if one partner has a problem then one can always move to the other partner. The ownership of the data has to be with the organasiation and not anyone else.
These factors are important when migrating to the cloud which are at times overlooked while being in a hurry to adapt to the cloud.
Identification of all possible costs is another thing which needs to be taken care of as cloud providers might give you a break up and a lot of it will go on the estimate and assessment of your existing infrastructure.
Making realistic assumptions is important in order to arrive at a cost that does not overrun during the implementation. These assessments are important for any organisation before moving to a cloud partner, according to Lele.
ERP is one part of the decision for cloud adoption the other one is latency, pointed out Atanu Pramanic
“The plant locations in our country are so remote that we don’t have a proper, sustained and consistent MPLS connection. When you talk of a response on data insight on which you are going to act on your production line if you depend on cloud you could land in trouble.
The time that it will take for the data to reside on cloud and do the data massaging and come back with your inference on the data insights it will be 10, 15, 20 seconds whereas you will have to see the inference in a millisecond or half a second. In most of the production line, cloud is still not the way to go on most of the OT areas”, said Pramanic
He further added in some cases the latest cloud infrastructure is not compatible with the legacy applications or the legacy OS. In such cases even if the organisations want they can’t migrate to cloud. These are some of the areas where we are bound by the current IT investment, OT environment and users responsive conditions.
“Whether you are a small medium or large enterprise, my recommendation is either you look at your problem in terms of a DC modernaisation or App modernaisation. The first step to cloud migration is to begin with the cloud portfolio analysis”, said Arivuvel Ramu.
He further added that it is important to look at the road map that the organisation has and then accordingly decide upon migrating to cloud.
If the road map is very agile then one should look at digital front end migration vs system of operation which called as the critical system migration. The organisations need to balance out as to which one they want to migrate first.
Multi Cloud environment
“Multi cloud strategy can be painful and requires high cloud maturity in an organisation”, said Arivuvel Ramu
He further added that various reasons that they opt for multicloud is the architecture which one builds to support multi cloud’s workload deployment and vendor locking is important and can the workload be easily deployed to cloud.
When working with a multi cloud vendor, the price is different and multi cloud provides different accepts today, data residency for example if one cloud provider’s services are not functional in one country then maybe tying up with the vendor whose services are present there would be an added advantage.
Best inbuilt architecture and technology is another aspect which is important as different cloud providers provide different technology, different solution providers use different solution or priority technology which is required for the business in such situations one needs to choose a specific business solution to run on a specific cloud in such cases as well a multi scale cloud will be beneficial.
“When we have to look into the strategy of what is the payload, what is that we are migrating and what the regulatory requirements are. In these times there are challenges as to which cloud provider should one partner with”, said Ajay Meher
He further added that after a while after migrating to cloud, companies might feel the need of building something with multiple providers and this is where some challenges could be faced and this is where a CIO helps the organisation in solving the challenges with regards to how a multi operative business can be worked upon and how the purpose of an organisation is solved with multiple partners involved.
In the current times it is not difficult working with multiple cloud providers and to a certain extent it is of benefit in terms of the pricing when one has multiple cloud providers.
Multiple cloud environments do have benefits but it also brings certain challenges.