Insights

Is your head stuck in the clouds?

Over the last couple of years, cloud computing has exploded as work went virtual and businesses adapted to the pandemic by focusing on the delivery of digital services.

Undoubtedly, in 2022 we will see this rapid adoption and growth continue. Gartner predicts that global spending on cloud services will reach over $482 billion in 2022, up from $313 billion in 2020.

While a move to the cloud might seem like a technical decision, at their core, they are a strategic business decision.

The shift to cloud is inevitable and the sooner organisations embark on their cloud journey, the better off they will be.

The question is what are your options and where do you start? Well, that’s where expert advice is required – there are lots of clouds, and not all of them are made equal.

Different types of cloud

Public clouds are the most common type of cloud computing, where the resources (servers and storage) are delivered over the Internet and are operated by a third-party cloud service provider like Microsoft Azure or Amazon AWS.

Hardware, storage and network resources are securely shared with other organisations or cloud “tenants”.

Public cloud is often used by organisations who have modern applications that can easily fit into pre-built solutions like Azure App Service, or Amazon S3 – and need rapid and infinite scalability.

Costs are often metered per minute which can suit firms with unpredictable or seasonal workloads, whilst leave those with persistently high resource requirements paying over the odds. It’s worth noting that every feature is individually metered too – like bandwidth usage and backup charges, so getting your budget right from day one is really important.

Public cloud can take many forms, such as IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), PaaS (Platform as a Service), or SaaS (Software as a Service).

A private cloud is built on similar technology to public cloud but is typically more reliable at the expense of rapid adoption of new features and technologies.

The key difference is that the services and infrastructure are maintained on a private network, and cloud resources are dedicated to the organisation. More customisation is also available than in the public cloud.

Costs are typically fixed and linked to a static set of resources which are available 100% of the time, which can end up being more cost effective for businesses with relatively static workloads. These costs are often all-inclusive too – rolling things like backups and bandwidth usage into the cost.

It is for these reasons that a private cloud is often used by firms who have business-critical reliance on their infrastructure, typically run more traditional technologies, and don’t need the ability to rapidly scale up or down.

Private cloud is usually delivered as either IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), or PaaS (Platform as a Service).

Hybrid cloud refers to a mixture of both public and private cloud solutions, as well as often having some on-premise infrastructure too.

So, which one is right for me?

This is where a scoping and design exercise needs to take place.

Luckily, at razorblue we have a broad product offering including public cloud solutions from both Microsoft and Amazon, as well as our own private cloud offering based in our own UK datacentres, giving clients a breadth of choice.

Our architects are also trained in multiple different technology stacks and can help you make the best decision for your business.

Cloud migration

Cloud migration is the process of moving a company’s digital assets, services, databases, IT resources and applications into the cloud, this can be done partially or wholly. Migration can also be moving from one cloud environment to another.

Many companies are now moving from outdated and increasingly inefficient legacy infrastructures, such as ageing servers or hardware solutions that are no longer operating at optimum capacity.

Moving to the cloud can be a transformative shift for your entire business, so it is vital to look at each step of the journey to truly understand what is involved.

  1. Defining a strategy
    It’s important to answer the question: “what business value will be gained by moving to the cloud?” Cloud migration is far from just a technology exercise. It needs to be rooted by business outcomes and specific goals your company wants to achieve.
    Based on these goals, you can begin to develop a cloud migration strategy. This will involve determining what applications will be moved, as well as what the infrastructure ultimately should look like.
  2. Planning
    Whilst the cloud does improve flexibility and make costs more efficient, you must anticipate how your applications might perform due to major infrastructure changes. This is where our experience comes in.
    This can only be achieved through discovery and assessment- we will scan and assess your existing infrastructure, applications, and data landscape to determine the most appropriate methods of migration.
    Risk assessments will take place based on current usage as well as pre-migration predictive analysis, enabling you to make informed decisions, with minimal risk and downtime.
  3. Making the move
    This involves modernising existing applications for the cloud, developing new cloud applications and/ or transforming architecture and infrastructure to eventually create an entirely new culture on the cloud.
    At razorblue our approach ensures a smooth migration. Our experts are well experienced in cloud migration and ensure a speedy process, whilst delivering high quality, consistent and repeatable results.

Cloud support from razorblue

Regardless of whether your business opts for public cloud, private cloud or a mixture of the two, our experts are here to help you make the right decision based on your specific business requirements.

Our cloud migration process provides detailed, robust methods for migrating datasets and applications of all sizes.

Our priority is the safety of your data and for many it is your most expensive asset. Business leaders need to know how and where their data is stored and what recovery and backup strategies are in place to protect it.

Using razorblue as your cloud provider means you have 24/7 access to our support team. Should you encounter any issues, you will speak to a real human on the phone, every time.

Our Infrastructure Team and proactive monitoring works around-the-clock, so issues are resolved quickly.