4 min to readCloud Services

How SoftwareOne can help you conquer cloud adoption challenges

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Gordon DaveyGlobal Azure Cloud Services Leader
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Organisations have many reasons for moving to the cloud. But if they haven’t fully articulated those reasons – or if they start with unrealistic expectations – their well-intentioned modernisation plans can quickly run up against a variety of obstacles and grind to a halt.

SoftwareOne has helped many companies in such situations break down the barriers to cloud adoption and get their transformation journeys back on track. Here’s what we’ve learned about the most common challenges and how to overcome them.

Understand why you’re moving to the cloud

One of the first hurdles your company might encounter centres on what you expect cloud adoption to achieve. Often, the C-suite and the technology team have different views: board members might believe the business needs to keep up with cloud trends, while IT might focus on the challenges and complexities of cloud migration. It’s important for everyone to recognise that the cloud brings fundamental changes to how an organisation stores and handles data – this has implications for data privacy, security, governance and more. The cloud also provides access to features, functionality and capabilities your business might not currently have.

After you understand what cloud adoption can bring your business, you need to articulate why you want to move to the cloud. Is it to reduce costs – maybe by being able to close on-premises data centres? Do you need greater scalability to handle ups and downs in IT service demands? Or are you looking to grow your business and expand to new markets? You need to clarify your business goals before you can connect these to the capabilities that cloud can deliver.

Envision your cloud adoption roadmap

Another common obstacle facing businesses on their cloud journeys is the sheer magnitude of the change that’s needed. This can lead to analysis paralysis, where the research phase seems to go on forever. Or it can lead to a decision to simply leap into the cloud wholesale, without fully considering whether some workloads are appropriate for that move.

Either way, these decisions can get in the way of making the most of cloud.

If you’re in this situation, it helps to focus on applications rather than on technologies and architectures. The key is to decide what’s needed for each application. Is it feasible to move the application to the cloud? Does it need to be modernised first? Or would a simple lift and shift work? Knowing this helps to prioritise and break down a migration program into more manageable chunks.

A licensing assessment will provide important guidance. This uses automated tools to understand your current software licensing landscape and whether each application should be retired, moved to the cloud as-is using your existing license or reimplemented with a new license in the cloud.

SoftwareOne supplements this automated assessment with a tool-based review using short, focused surveys to get more details from each application owner in an organisation. For example, these surveys can help to identify applications that are about to be decommissioned, or applications that need to be updated to meet new compliance requirements.

Develop a migration plan

After you’ve clarified your business goals and assessed your licensing and application needs, you can prioritise which applications should be moved to the cloud first and start building your migration plan. For example, you might conclude that you are able to modernise 20% of your applications, lift and shift 50% and decommission or relicnse the remaining 30%. Knowing this, you can begin to fill in the details of your cloud strategy.

SoftwareOne understands how to guide organisations through this process, helping with considerations such as how to time the migration of certain applications to ensure that key business processes aren’t disrupted. For instance, if your company has workloads with specific seasonal usage, you might want to migrate the applications used for that process well outside of those busy periods. Having an application-centric approach allows you to plan your migration much more simply than if you use a more traditional server-centric approach.

An effective migration plan will also provide a clear view of what your costs will be. Although a move into the cloud can reduce some expenses, that’s not always the case early on. Consider a plan to shut down a data centre: although you’ll save on data centre operating costs once a migration is 100% complete, a phase-one migration of just 15% of your data center applications probably means you’ll still need to be paying the vast majority, if not all of, the on-premises costs. Aspects such as electricity, cooling and even building rent will not necessarily decrease in cost in a granular way if they are still required for the applications that remain. Again, SoftwareOne can help here. We’re deeply familiar with the migration funding programmes available through all of the hyperscale cloud services providers – Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure – and these can reduce your transitional costs considerably.

Cloud migration and adoption expert guidance

How to approach cloud adoption.

How SoftwareOne can help

In addition to our migration capabilities, SoftwareOne also provides expertise in FinOps, operational best practices, managed cloud services, security, user productivity and more. To learn more, or to get started on your cloud journey, contact us today.


Two men in business suits posing for a photo.

Gordon Davey
Global Azure Cloud Services Leader

Cloud Services (Azure)