26 Cloud Experts Reveal the Biggest Cloud Migration Mistakes Companies Make When Moving to the Cloud

The cloud computing industry has experienced tremendous growth over the past 5 to 10 years, and what used to be simply a buzzword in the technology world, the “cloud”, is now a common and valuable tool among businesses and independent online users alike. In fact, as of today, at least 72% of businesses have adopted the cloud. Within 3 years, that number will reach a staggering 91% of businesses.

But adopting the cloud, or in other words migrating a business to the cloud, is not necessarily an easy feat. Any cloud professional will tell you that failure to properly prepare your business for cloud migration can end up in costly results such as company-wide disorganization, prolonged downtime, loss of productivity and even loss of data. Things like security, capacity, reliability, and employee training are just a few of the issues you’ll need to be aware of.

Since we here at ProfitBricks pride ourselves on providing comprehensive cloud computing support and services to businesses that are either looking to migrate their business to the cloud or have recently done so, we wanted to find some expert advice on how to safely and efficiently execute a cloud migration, and more specifically, how to avoid the most common (and avoidable) mistakes that most companies tend to make when migrating to the cloud. To do this we reached out to 26 cloud computing and business cloud experts to answer this question:

“What are the biggest mistakes companies make in migrating to the cloud?”

We’ve collected and compiled their expert advice into this comprehensive guide on how to effectively migrate your business to the cloud. See what our experts said below:

Meet Our Panel of Business Cloud Computing Experts:

Andrew WalkerAndrew Walker

Andrew Walker is the Founder of Clicktools, a technology company that enables organizations to collect, centralize, and act on customer interactions, leveraging the power of CRM.

The biggest issue that comes up when businesses seek to migrate to the cloud is…

The creation of data silos and the lack of centralization of data, especially when it comes to customer data.

Frank MuscarelloFrank Muscarello

Frank Muscarello is Co-Founder and CEO of MarkITx, an online exchange for trading used IT hardware. Over the span of Frank’s career as a serial entrepreneur, he has executed more than $400 million in contract sales to technology enterprises from the Fortune 50 to 500. He served as President of Vision POS, a self-funded business that sold used and refurbished point-of-sale hardware and ranked among Inc. 500’s list of fastest-growing private companies in 2008. In 2009, Frank was awarded Northwestern University’s Entrepreneur of the Year award.

Typically, a move to the cloud is coupled with the disposition of a large amount of physical IT assets. One of the biggest mistakes we see when this happens is…

Companies simply discarding their used data center equipment or worse, paying a third party to have it removed.

The fact is, there is a $312 billion secondary market for used IT gear. By aggregating demand via a neutral exchange like MarkITx, these cloud-bound companies can recoup a non-trivial amount of IT budget for equipment they may have otherwise deemed worthless.

Sarah McMullinSarah McMullin

Sarah McMullin is the Project Coordinator and Customer Development Specialist for Camino Information Services, an IT solutions company based in Houston, Texas with clients nationwide. Camino serves a variety of industries as a cloud provider, network manager, and Microsoft Partner.

One the biggest mistakes that companies make when migrating to the cloud is…

Not doing their homework.

The cloud can be an overwhelming concept for a business, but more and more I see people rushing to adopt it without really understanding what it means for their particular business. For example, any company that has to deal with regulatory compliance must make sure that their cloud vendor meets the required security standards before handing over their data.

For these reasons, my advice is always, “Don’t jump in without doing your homework.” Homework means researching what type of cloud service is the best fit for your particular business model, learning what makes for a good cloud provider (i.e. downtime, server location) and writing out a set of expectations of costs and benefits to discuss with potential vendors. Simply saying, “Put me on the cloud!” isn’t enough and leads to disappointing results.

Kevin BarnicleKevin Barnicle

Kevin Barnicle is the Founder and CEO of Controle, LLC, an IT/Legal Consulting and Software firm. Controle consults with companies on how to best control electronically stored information and migrate to the cloud on a daily basis. The firm has been involved in over 100 migrations and has seen the good, bad, and ugly with migrating to the cloud.

Our company has lots of experience when it comes to migrating businesses to the cloud, and when it comes to the biggest mistakes companies make in migrating to the cloud here is some advice I would give:

1. Before you migrate data to the cloud make sure your house is in order.

Many companies focus on all of the benefits of moving to the cloud, to which there are many, but skip the details on what it will take to move the data from their Corporate environment to the cloud. Subsequently many companies make the huge mistake of not cleaning up their environment before migrating to the cloud. This results in (depending on the size of the company) potentially hundreds of thousands or millions of wasted dollars and many wasted hours of effort.

If you were moving houses you would make sure you would throw out the garbage that you collected over the years instead of bringing into the new house right? The same goes for migrating to the cloud.. Many organizations have piles of what my company affectionate refers to as “eTrash”. Get rid of garbage electronic data before you move to the cloud and you will save a ton of money and a ton of time in the long run

2. Consider how you will respond to Compliance/Litigation requests.

All companies have to deal with Regulatory and Legal obligations as it relates to managing data. Many companies think about the IT benefits of moving to the cloud and completely forget about the Legal impact.

One client of ours came to us to come up with a solution after a dire situation. In the middle of a lawsuit all of the company’s corporate data had been moved to the cloud but the tool that the IT department had selected had zero Legal review capabilities. As a result this customer lost a 6-figure lawsuit mostly because of their inability to get the necessary data out of the new cloud environment. Companies cannot overlook these requirements and must get buy in from Legal on moving to the cloud.

Orlando Scott-CowleyOrlando Scott-Cowley

Orlando Scott-Cowley is the director of technology marketing at enterprise cloud services provider Mimecast, which he joined in 2006. Orlando has worked in the IT security industry for his entire career, working with government organizations, businesses, vendors and resellers and in consultancy. He also writes for influential publications and speaks at industry events on a range of IT security issues, particularly as related to the emergence of cloud and SaaS technologies.

One serious mistake companies make when migrating to the cloud is…

Putting all their eggs in one basket, and committing to one single vendor’s cloud, which risks serious downtime or data loss in the event of a cloud outage. This can be addressed using a ‘blended cloud’ strategy, whereby risk is spread across two or more clouds, providing redundancy and business continuity should anything go wrong with one cloud.

Another major mistake is when organizations invest in solutions which are marketed as ‘pure-cloud,’ but actually still require local appliances on the company’s own network – making them vulnerable to all the classis security gaps associated with LANs in the first place: data leakage, hardware failure, server crashes, etc. Instead, organizations should choose managed cloud services that can guarantee high availability, lower total cost of ownership and security, without leaving anything to chance with on-premise hardware.

Patrick TownsendPatrick Townsend

Patrick Townsend is the Founder and CEO of Townsend Security and has been in the data security industry for more than 25 years and brings both a deep well of knowledge and a unique perspective to the subject. He speaks regularly on data protection and encryption key management topics.

Companies moving to the cloud often make the mistake of…

Assuming that their data is automatically protected.

Just because a cloud provider is, let’s say, PCI DSS compliant, it doesn’t mean that you are guaranteed PCI compliance. While you can leverage the hard work they have done to go through their certifications, it is still ultimately your responsibility to encrypt and protect your data.

Keep these things in view, as a starter, to make sure your data security posture (in the cloud) is rock solid:

  • Make sure all data at rest is protected by 256-bit encryption.
  • Ensure that your encryption is protected by proper key management.
  • Verify “assignment of roles” to each user is strictly monitored with respect to data access.

Moving to the cloud has exciting possibilities to the enterprise, but the increased cost savings and flexibility will only be realized if the data is secure. If the data is compromised, the loss to the company, in most cases, will outweigh the savings.

Anthony MongeluzoAnthony Mongeluzo

Anthony Mongeluzo is the Founder of PCS, which he started in 2002 with no staff and a few clients. Today, PCS has 44 employees and offices in four states. Anthony is also FOX-TV’s IT expert in Philadelphia, the 4th-largest media market in the U.S.

The biggest mistake companies make when migrating to the cloud is…

Failing to conduct a full cost comparison.

Many companies just assume when they move their technology to the cloud that all of the expenses of IT evaporate and are all combined into one bill for the cloud. Presto! Gone.

Completely wrong.

The cloud and the way it is been marketed has led people to believe they do not need an IT staff, will never need to buy hardware again, and then the server closet will “run itself”. Business owners forget that employees will eventually or terminate employees, desktop/laptop computers will still have issues (sometimes complex ones that don’t get solved quickly by searching Google), and in our mobile world support will be needed for tablets, laptops, cell phones etc.

The cloud is great and offers many benefits but all business owners should calculate the total cost of ownership during a three-to-five-year period to see if moving to the cloud makes financial sense. After all, it’s NOT just about the cloud and IT, it’s also about profitability and a sound financial approach.

Steven SaslowSteven Saslow

Steven Saslow is Vice President of the Information Technology Group (ITG). Steven believes that customer satisfaction in IT is ultimately created through proper engineering. He is passionate about helping organizations troubleshoot and discover the technology they need to reach their business goals.

To avoid running into problems when migrating to the cloud, the first thing a company should do is…

Find a scalable, redundant internet modality for the organization.

Many companies don’t take the time to do this when developing a cloud strategy, which can lead to major headaches down the road. To elaborate, the cloud is creating services and the internet is what’s connecting these services, so the organization is going to require a strong bandwidth. If they lose their internet connection, then they lose the ability to work.

Companies also need to address both the redundancy of where the service is located (in the cloud) and the on-site connections they use. For example, the primary connection might be a fiber connection and a backup cable connection could be the secondary connection.

Jennifer RigginsJennifer Riggins

Jennifer Riggins is the Marketing Director of GetApp, an SaaS marketplace. Before entering her role as Marketing Director at GetApp, Jennifer was the Content and Social guru at business software companies Quote Roller and PandaDoc.

The biggest mistake in adopting technologies isn’t asking questions before, but instead, it is the fact that…

Most people adopt cloud-based software based on notoriety or what their friends said. But, unless their friends are in the same sector, this makes no sense.

You need to ask yourself who is going to use this tool and what are our business needs? Separate that into must-haves and would-be-nice. Then use a comparison site to whittle down — first by intended business size, then by those features. Finally, narrow your choices down to a couple apps, and then take them for a test drive. Once you know what you need and which business software can solve your pains, then you need to find out which fits most comfortably in your team and your processes.

Carlos GrandaCarlos Granda

Carlos Granda is Executive Vice President of Worldwide Services at RiverMeadow. In his leadership role, Carlos is responsible for all consulting, education/enablement and product support services. He leads RiverMeadow’s Worldwide Services team to develop cloud migration IP, methodologies and repeatable cloud adoption best practices and services, which are delivered to customers by RiverMeadow partners.

The biggest mistake companies make in migrating to the cloud is…

Choosing any cloud solution without respect to your particular business’ needs.

Migrating to the cloud can come at a cost if you don’t employ a well-thought-out strategy, leveraging the right solutions to aid your endeavor. Many companies don’t appreciate the challenges and methodologies associated with migrating IT infrastructure into the cloud. There are different types of migration projects that both managed service providers and end users will encounter, and there needs to be a best practices approach to make a migration project successful and cost-efficient.

John BiglinJohn Biglin

John Biglin is the CEO of Interphase Systems, Inc., a premier provider of Information Technology Services, and is a seasoned business executive and board-level advisor with 27 years of industry. He and his team have helped many firms build their Cloud Computing Strategy and successfully migrate key systems to the Cloud using Tier-1 Cloud providers. John is also an Amazon Best Selling Author, is often interviewed by major industry trade publications (PharmaVoice, Pharmaceutical Commerce, eWeek, infoWorld, etc.) and has been a speaker at industry conferences and corporate events.

My team and I often get brought into assess and resolve cloud issues for many of our clients. Here are some of the bigger mistakes we have seen when it comes to migrating your business to the cloud:

1 – Poor Planning & Testing

Like any key business system, implementing a Cloud system requires proper planning. Some systems can be implemented as fast as you can enter your name and credit card information. But that doesn’t mean they are properly configured for your firm’s needs. There are often various configurations needed, such as user accounts, access rights, etc. that need to be planned and then configured. In certain cloud systems, if you wait to configure security settings for example, you run the risk of lost data. We just recently had a client accidentally delete their entire blog because the intern they had mistakenly had full administrative rights to their website, rather than just editing/publishing access rights.

2 – Poor Due Diligence

As with any vendor, it is important to do some due diligence on firms that say they are Cloud Providers. There are many companies that masquerade as a “Cloud Provider”, or similar euphemism. Some of them are simply a small group of software or networking staff who have a computer room or data center where they host the systems they sell. That’s not Cloud Computing. A couple years ago, we picked up a new client after the Microsoft Exchange Hosting they outsourced to a so-called Cloud provider was down for 4 days. It turned out that the client’s ‘Cloud provider’ had re-outsourced the client’s Exchange e-mail system to yet another provider.

3 – Poor connectivity to the Internet

Since almost all Cloud-based systems are accessed via the internet, a reliable, high-performance internet connection is crucial. We’ve seen companies roll out a cloud-based system to their users and then experience very poor performance – assuming it is ‘The Cloud’ that is unreliable. We often find that they are using a slow or unreliable internet connection. They would have had a more successful rollout had they done the proper planning & testing of the new system before rollout.

4 – Limited Backup

Even though most Cloud Computing Vendors say your data is safe, that doesn’t mean that they have an adequate backup of your data. Always ensure you have access to a backup of your firm’s data that complies with your retention needs.

Dennis NajjarDennis Najjar

Dennis Najjar is the Co-Founder of AccountingDepartment.com, the leader in virtual accounting and bookkeeping services. Founded in 2004, AccountingDepartment.com is the next generation solution for SMB owners looking to streamline and improve their accounting and bookkeeping functions with cutting edge technology, forward-thinking culture and dedicated, full-service expert processes. The 2014 Gold Stevie Award winner for Company of the Year – Professional Services, AccountingDepartment.com is leading the virtual revolution in the accounting and bookkeeping services industry.

The biggest problem we’ve recognized in migrating to the cloud is…

Not educating the end user or getting “buy in” before migrating.

We’re 100% virtual but we’ve learned our clients need to fully understand every aspect of a new cloud-based program, including security and ease of use, before they’re confident about it. Assuming everyone is just ready and willing to move to the cloud is a big “No-No”, especially when it comes to their financial data.

Tim Singleton StriveTim Singleton

Tim Singleton has been in the IT industry for 15 years, and currently owns and operates Strive Technology Consulting, an IT service provider for small businesses in the Boulder/Denver market.

I think the single biggest mistake companies make when migrating to the cloud is…

Expecting that it will be the same as it was on the LAN.

Modern LAN’s run at a speed of 1000 Mbps. A T1 line to the internet maxes out at 1.5 Mbps. A fast cable connection is 50 Mbps. So when moving an application the cloud, remember that data transfer will be tens to hundreds of times slower than it was on the LAN. Many cloud apps are not affected by this because the amount of data transferred is quite small. But for certain areas, such as file sharing and storage, this can result in greatly decreased efficiency.

Also, cloud applications are only as sable as your internet connection. Cloud apps may break less than on the LAN because a server outage or misconfiguration is not as likely. However, your access to the cloud is dependent on your internet connection remaining always on, fast, and consistent. Some internet connections go down, some are unstable or untrustworthy. If your internet connection does not have 100% uptime, you will be without access to your cloud application.

To mitigate around the unstable internet connection, consider a backup/redundant connection, or keeping mission critical applications in-house. As for the speed problem, consider how much data you will be transferring and how fast your internet connection is before making this switch. Some applications, such as email and backups, are perfect for the cloud. Others, such as Active Directory and file sharing, should probably remain onsite and be re-evaluated a few years down the road.

Efrain GastelumEfrain Gastelum

Efrain Gastelum is the Director of Integrated Technologies at PARALLELTEK, a provider of unified network cabling, audiovisual and security solutions to simplify communication between employees, clients, and smart office technology. In his leadership role, Efrain is responsible for customer-facing technology needs and facilitating all the integrated technologies within the workplace. His approach with clients is honest and straightforward to ensure their needs are met and expectations exceeded.

I believe the biggest mistake companies make in migrating to the cloud is…

Under estimating the control aspect.

When we move some or all of our data to the cloud, we seem to move the security, control and responsibility to the cloud as well, without really wanting to. But not knowing who’s on the other side can sometimes be a concern. Properly creating a mission plan can assist you with the redundancy required to keep your business network infrastructure UP and Efficient.

All of the Cloud providers today rely on some sort of ISP like you and me. We cannot predict the future or assume that all measure of contingency have been taken into place. Sometimes considering having a dual network with On-Premise and Off-Premise can be the best for a company. Ask your service provider key questions about how their network infrastructure is built, and if they have a back up that can support your needs.

Another key mistake many companies make is to base the decision on cost value vs service value. One cannot assume that all service levels are equal. In this day and age you pay for what you get – increased bandwidth, increased storage, user accounts and so on. The cloud is not a one-time investment. It is a continuous investment that adjusts with market trends and serviceability needs. One must analyze their ROI for the next five years to determine if it will truly benefit them or not.

Jeff KearJeff Kear

Jeff Kear is Co-Founder and Co-Owner of Planning Pod, a cloud-based event management software-as-a-service for event professionals and venues. He is a serial entrepreneur, having launched 3 businesses in the last decade, and has 20+ years of marketing and branding experience for Fortune 500s and tech companies as well as small businesses.

I run an online business that provides cloud-based software for event planners and professionals, and we have dozens of companies migrating their data to our cloud-based applications every month. Here are two of the biggest issues we have found that companies run into when migrating:

#1 Many companies do not properly and thoroughly scope out their needs prior to researching cloud-based solutions.

The first thing a company should do before they begin a search for cloud providers is to determine what features, functions and data storage/retrieval capabilities they require. Most businesses have different processes and different ways of doing things, and the only way to know if a cloud solution or application fits your business’s processes is to first map out all your needs and requirements. Schematics and flow diagrams are great for doing this, but sometimes even a spreadsheet will suffice.

#2 Many companies do not conduct adequate testing prior to launch.

Often companies are in such a hurry to get their new cloud-based solution up and running that they neglect to test it out thoroughly. This includes walking through the application or system step-by-step and testing our a variety of use-case scenarios as well as testing data output mechanisms to ensure that the correct data is being delivered back to them in the proper fashion and format.

Alex Henthorn-IwaneAlex Henthorn-Iwane

Alex Henthorn-Iwane is VP of Marketing at QualiSystems, the leading provider of DevOps orchestration and automation solutions for IT infrastructure, network, development and test organizations, and is responsible for worldwide marketing and public relations. Prior to joining QualiSystems, Alex was Vice-President of Marketing at Packet Design, Inc., a provider of network management software, and has 20+ years of experience in senior management, marketing and technical roles at networking and security startups.

The biggest mistake organizations make in migrating to the cloud occurs when…

High-level management may naively believe that it will be a simple task.

It can be a daunting task for IT staff to introduce new network, computing and storage technologies into an environment filled with legacy components that will continue to operate for many years, Both old and new infrastructure need to be reconfigured and integrated, which can be difficult when many organizations operate within silos with limited collaboration and cooperation.

Migrating to the cloud will also require that IT organizations make significant progress towards eliminating the barriers that typically exist between the various technical domains; e.g., network, computing and storage, and between IT and their application developer and other customers. It may be difficult for IT staff to accept that once applications and infrastructure are virtualized, their jobs may change. IT organizations will need fewer people to perform manual tasks such as configuration management and will require more people who are skilled in automation, agile processes and business requirements analysis.

Jim HaelmaierJim Haselmaier

Jim Haselmaier is Founder and Consultant at Accelerated Insight, a firm that provides product management & business planning for businesses moving to the cloud. Jim consults with companies considering or already using cloud technologies; specifically OpenStack. His ability to analyze complex market opportunities enables him to help organizations define strategies and plans that incorporate cloud technologies.

The biggest mistake businesses make in migrating to the cloud is…

Assuming that only moving the solution to a cloud based system guarantees them 100% application availability.

There is a reason cloud suppliers don’t guarantee 100% uptime – because portions of the cloud WILL go down. The application has to be designed to handle disruptions in cloud operations. Some people think if they move their application – with no changes – to the cloud then it will be available 100% of the time.

Guy Baroan headshotGuy Baroan

Guy Baroan is the President and Founder of Baroan Technologies, a managed service provider located in northern NJ. Baroan Technologies is a member of the Microsoft SMB VAR Champions Club Program and the exclusive Microsoft SMB Cloud Champions Club. Guy uses a combination of over twenty years of IT and business experience in his role as the Senior Solutions Engineer. Guy is currently part of the Ingram Micro VentureTech Network Council.

Some of the biggest mistakes companies make migrating to the cloud are as follows:

  • Assuming they will be backed up in the cloud and they will NOT be.
  • Assuming they no longer need to maintain their systems if they are in the cloud, this is NOT true.
  • Not taking into account that if they move to the cloud, they are extremely reliant on the internet access. Many times they don’t add a redundant (2nd) line and when something happens to the main line they cannot do any work until that comes up.
  • Underestimating the internet speed needed to be able to work with the cloud environment. Many times we have seen people using slower internet access because they don’t have what they need available in their area.. Or they may be paying a very high monthly fee, because they are limited to only certain types of connections.
  • Their applications may not be ideal for the cloud, so making them cloud ready may require a whole lot of investment that was not considered.
  • The monthly fees from a cloud infrastructure may add up pretty quickly compared to an internal infrastructure.
  • The cloud partner/data center is not right. Not all data centers are built the same.

Kevin VarnonKevin Varnon

Kevin Varnon is the Founder of ClientTrax CRM, is an ACT! Cerified Consultant, and has over thirty years of IT experience. He has worked in numerous industries including sales, retail, banking, finance and insurance. His experience includes platforms from mainframe to client/server, web and Internet, and various databases including DB2, SQL Server and Access. For the last fifteen years, Mr. Varnon has concentrated on custom database and CRM applications. These disciplines bring his extensive database experience and his accumulated business knowledge to bear on the particular challenges faced by businesses pressing into the customer tracking and relationship area.

The biggest mistake businesses make in migrating to the cloud is…

Not making sure you can get off of it.

Invariably, when you go to the cloud, you’re going to another system. That means a different data structure, different format. Different values mean different things.

If you decide to get out of it, how do you get your data back in a format you can use? They’re not going to convert back to the old system for you.

And by the way, you better have your own backup in case these guys go out of business. In that case, you still have to get it in a format you can use.

Lars HilseLars Hilse

Lars Hilse is the Founder & CEO of Lars Hilse – Web Strategy & E-Business Development Consultants, a management consultancy founded in 2008 to advise and assist organizations during the creation, evolution and unification of their web related marketing and product distribution efforts, in particular with the seamless integration of complex workflow, customer relationship management, customer-service, and other related issues.

The main mistakes businesses make when migrating to the cloud are…

Underestimating the security risks involved.

When taking IT infrastructure to the cloud, it is automatically assumed that the provider has undertaken all necessary steps to secure the customer data.

Since this field is rather new, experience is missing on whether or not all measure are being undertaken to guarantee data-security.

Another factor adding to insecurity is the speed at which providers are pushing (often unfinished or insufficiently tested) software to the market, just to be “in the game”.

Further factors, which add to the security headaches in the cloud are external threats, for instance through BOYD policies.

When “friendly” users bring exploited devices into the company, then all efforts undertaken in context to network security/cloud are compromised.

Ray GasnickRay Gasnick

Ray Gasnick is Director of IT Technologies at Miles Technologies, a leading provider of IT, custom software, online marketing and web design services.

One of the mistakes most commonly made when a business migrates to a cloud solution is to…

Underestimate their connectivity.

Many businesses overlook the fact that their data / applications reside on the same local network and typically have a gigabit network connecting clients and servers. Because most off the shelf “cloud” services are accessed over the internet and not a dedicated point to point network, the amount of available bandwidth connecting the users with their data can drop sometimes by 100 times and as such that becomes a significant pain point to any end user.

Along similar lines, most businesses maintain their single internet connection despite the fact that without any internet connectivity, their business can potentially come to a halt. Overlooking the value of a “failover” internet connection or a mechanism that can automatically switch in the event of an outage can be the cause of significant distress with any “cloud” based systems. Employees will lose immediate productivity and potentially dread using that service because “We never had these problems with the OLD system”.

Allen FalconAllen Falcon

Allen Falcon is the CEO of Cumulus Global, a cloud solutions provider specializing in cloud data security and delivering a wide range of communication, collaboration, and productivity solutions. Allen is a technologist and entrepreneur with more than 20 years of experience helping small and mid-size businesses understand and manage trending technology issues.

The biggest mistake companies make in migrating to the cloud is…

Not planning to ensure that they are creating or extending their ecosystem.

When picking cloud solutions, the services should integrate or provide a cohesive solution that includes the user and administrative services typical of on-premise solutions. These choices should be based on business need first; the technology comes later.

Kevin RamirezKevin Ramirez

Kevin Ramirez is Co-Founder and CTO of Sixty Vocab, a foreign language vocabulary building tool.

The biggest mistakes companies often make when migrating to the cloud are…

1) Doing it too late.

2) Forgetting that code still needs to be optimized. Just because you have the power of the Internet doesn’t mean your queries can’t be tightened up. Google loves speedy websites.

3) No backing up their data. You still have to backup your database to someplace secure -the cloud still sits on a machine.

John C. Fournier EliassenGroupJohn C. Fournier

John C. Fournier is a Systems Support Specialist at Eliassen Group, a firm specializing in IT recruitment and staffing as well as tech staffing and recruiting nationwide. John was one of the overseers of Eliassen Group moving all of its IT functions into the cloud a short while ago. He is also the SharePoint Administrator for the 19th largest IT staffing and consulting services company in the U.S., according to the annual rankings compiled by Staffing Industry Analysts’ Magazine for 2013.

The biggest mistakes a lot of companies make when migrating to the cloud is…

Not knowing what it means to be in the cloud.

They also have no idea with what the costs are associated with such a move. Depending upon the size of the enterprise, they can be substantial. For example:

  • How many servers are needed with such a move?
  • How much bandwidth do you need for a successful adoption?
  • What is the plan for backup?
  • Then, once you’ve migrated into the crowd, how is your system going to be maintained?

A successful move into the cloud means you have to pay attention to all of the ‘little’ details that are a part of the overall larger decision.

Rich SilvaRich Silva

Rich Silva is the Founder of Pain Point IT Solutions, an IT Consultation and Managed Service Provider. Too many companies prefer to take reactive approaches to IT instead of proactive. Pain Point IT Solutions’ cause is to help them with short-term fixes and establish a long-term, trusted partnership with those companies and organizations.

The biggest mistake we find companies make when migrating to the cloud is…

Having the false sense that they are moving towards independence from their current IT department or IT arrangement.

The pitch from cloud technology companies is that they will manage the applications, the
backups, and provide remote desktop support. While much of this is all true, companies subscribing to these services can’t under-cut their budgets for quality on-site people and lose site of the fact that their physical computers and network are still essential conduits to getting to the cloud.

Brian BurnsBrian Burns

Brian Burns is Director of Cloud Services for Agile Defense, Inc., a leading provider of cloud migration and day-to-day management services and IT for the Department of Defense and other public sector agencies. He has more than 17 years of technology and cloud experience and specializes in working with clients on cloud migration.

Perhaps one of the biggest mistakes that companies make when migrating to the cloud is in…

Assuming that by moving applications to the cloud, all of their security is taken care of by the cloud service provider (CSP).

While the CSP is responsible for the security of the cloud (data center, network, servers, etc.) CSPs do not, by default, manage the security of your virtual network, servers, applications, or data.

Companies need to plan and budget for internal resources or outside 3rd-party system integrators to setup the initial security (including configuring routing, firewalls, and operating system/application patches). After this initial configuration, companies need to continue to monitor, manage, and remediate possible security threats to their systems. This ongoing responsibility needs to be performed 24x7x365. Without properly planning and budgeting for proper security management, companies open themselves up to system failures, security breaches and possibly even data theft.


What is your Cloud Migration plan?

We’d be happy to share some insight on what our engineers believe are the steps to a successful cloud migration. ProfitBricks is the price/performance leader in cloud computing, which makes that part of the decision easier.  We have published a Cloud migration white paper [PDF], which is a short overview and has the top tips by our teams. Download it today.