Cloud Migration Begins with an Application Portfolio Analysis

While the COVID pandemic has delayed or cancelled many IT projects, one thing remains certain: organizations are moving to the cloud not just at a steady but at an increasing rate.

Earlier this year, IDC issued a press release stating that “for the full year [2020], investments in cloud IT infrastructure will surpass spending on non-cloud infrastructure and reach $69.5 billion or 54.2% of the overall IT infrastructure spend.”

cloud migration imageWhat is driving the continued push to the cloud?

According to IDC, “Widespread lockdowns across the world and staged reopening of economies triggered increased demand for cloud-based consumer and business services driving additional demand for server, storage, and networking infrastructure utilized by cloud service provider datacenters.”

Moreover, in a survey of more than 500 IT leaders and executives, Deloitte found that security and data protection are top drivers. “Cybersecurity attacks are rising in sophistication, and a shortage of skills means that many companies are struggling to manage security in-house.”

How to Get Started with Cloud Migration

For organizations eager to begin cloud migration, the first step is to conduct an application portfolio analysis. An analysis will give you the information you need to determine how well applications across your portfolio are serving the business, which ones are candidates for cloud migration, and what—if anything—should be done with other applications to reduce costs and achieve business improvements.

An analysis will identify:

  • Applications that are active versus those that are not (replaced by more modern systems, for example)
  • Applications that are current and those that require upgrades
  • Where your applications run today
  • The current cost of running and maintaining applications

Your analysis also will reveal applications that are candidates for lift-and-shift to the cloud, systems that require refactoring before going to the cloud, applications that aren’t good candidates for the cloud, and systems that can simply be retired.

Amazingly, some organizations struggle to even identify application boundaries and what constitutes an application and where application boundaries exist. This lack of understanding of application topology can paralyze a cloud initiative, in that organizations cannot identity a path to incrementally move applications from on-prem to the cloud.*

Know Your Application Dependencies

Part of identifying applications that are good candidates for cloud migration is understanding dependencies with other applications and in your overall infrastructure. Your team, along with an asset discovery tool, can map the dependencies to help with this process.

Once dependencies are identified, you can assess which applications may not be worth the effort to move to the cloud and the interdependencies to ensure once others have made the migration.

With your application portfolio analysis in hand, you will know:

  1. Cloud Migration Candidates: Applications that are candidates for cloud migration and those that are not.
  2. For systems that are good candidates, what the related dependencies are.
  3. Applications that have been replaced by more modern systems and can be decommissioned for immediate cost savings.

When Flatirons conducts an application portfolio analysis, we also deliver an estimated total cost reduction from moving appropriate applications to the cloud and identify other ways leveraging the cloud accelerates business goals.

Whether your cloud application is up and running or you are in a planning phase for leveraging cloud capabilities, we are here to help. Let’s get started!

*Be aware that some cloud vendors advocate simple ‘lift-and-shift’ engagements, where the customer is advised to simply move their existing app as-is into the cloud. Our experience is that this approach is a bit myopic and organizations that adapt this approach miss a strategic opportunity to simplify, modernize, and secure their application portfolio.