Many companies struggle when it comes to their infrastructure and their network.  Too costly, too low level, too much of a hassle.  Migrating systems and infrastructure to the Cloud is going to be a priority for almost every firm.  It is of course important to address common issues and deployment concerns before moving forward in the process of migration.  A key feature which is usually left out of budgeting a migration to the cloud is training.  This includes cultural change and change management.

 

Migrating to a cloud-based system should be a smooth transition for everyone involved. That’s why training staff and personnel in the process of migrating legacy systems to a hybrid cloud, along with proper usage and cultural change; can make this transition somewhat easier and more transparent.

 

What is a Hybrid Cloud?

A hybrid cloud is a type of cloud environment which enables the use of private cloud and third party services.  It basically is a hybrid arrangement between an on-premise and a secure private cloud system.  You connect your internal legacy systems to the private cloud and offload your infrastructure, processes and some applications onto the cloud infrastructure.  This allows companies and employees to move workloads between both private and public systems; giving businesses more flexibility in their data usage and deployment options.

 

Benefits of the Hybrid Cloud

When you are making the decision to migrate legacy systems to a hybrid cloud you are choosing a valuable resource that can help manage workloads within your company. The public cloud portion of the hybrid cloud offers scalability and then eliminates the need for you to make large, expensive purchases to accommodate your short-term demand in data deployment.  The public cloud will scale up or scale down depending on your demand usage.  You are only billed for what you use.  Most importantly it removes the tedious concerns of infrastructure management from your company, allowing your business and IT resources to focus on value add processes and business centric improvements.

 

A common issue with Migration: Training and cultural change

A major obstacle in migrating legacy systems to a hybrid cloud is training.  First, we will need to rewrite, ‘wrap’, and migrate legacy applications to a Web-Services, cloud-enabled platform and stack.  This is not simple, especially if your code is millions of lines in size.  Your application code needs to be web-serviced enabled.  It will likely cost some money to improve and migrate your code to a proper code base.

 

Another obvious issue will be the skills of your internal IT team.  You might not have the skills in house to upgrade and migrate your code and apps to the cloud, nor manage the platform and cloud infrastructures.  Re-training your IT staff in Cloud technology and skills, has be budgeted. A similar re-training program will likely be necessary for management and end-users, as the company shifts its computing and business processes to a flexible, distributed model.  This is especially poignant if you have a workforce which is used to using legacy apps, or ‘older’ technology systems or products.

 

Conclusion

The benefits of a lower cost hybrid infrastructure outweigh the costs and fears [eg. Security, end user apprehension], in developing a hybrid cloud infrastructure. What we see in the real world, is that the training and cultural management costs of migrating to a hybrid-cloud can be the same as the actual costs of the technical migration itself!  Yet often times firms ignore this investment and do not spend enough time on cultural management and change issues which are embedded in hybrid cloud deployments.  This can lead to problems in understanding, using, and profiting from the migration to the Cloud.