migrate your IT infrastructure to the cloud

Step-by-Step Guide to Successfully Migrate Your IT Infrastructure to the Cloud

This is a step-by-step guide on how you can successfully migrate your IT infrastructure to the cloud. It is important to note that this article is general in nature and only provides main headings for defining a migration plan.
Cloud Migration as a service

Table of Contents

1. Assessment and planning

Evaluate your current IT infrastructure:

Assess the systems, applications and data in use with a view of identifying what needs be moved. The environment must be accurately characterized (Specify SQL technologies in use, VMs among others,etc…).

Document all assets:

Catalog all IT assets including applications, data and hardware so as to know what is there now and what should go where during migration.

Study performance of security controls:

  • Evaluate your infrastructure ’s performance vis à vis security controls; the cloud should meet all the necessary standards otherwise improvements have to be made.
  • Identify who owns each asset.

Determine what goes and what stays behind:

Some things may not require being moved at all thus it is necessary to determine which ones they are.

Set objectives for migration:

One must know why he/she is doing this  migration. 

  • What does he/she intend achieving out of it?
  • Is it for instance just meant for enabling service delivery efficiency through regular resource reallocation or rather disaster recovery preparedness such that in case some systems fail then others automatically take over?

Be aware of risks involved:

Identify challenges that might arise along the way and come up with possible solutions for each anticipated problem.
As you consider each potential cloud migration project, it is helpful to begin by asking a few basic questions about the nature and scope of the project.

  • If you are planning on migrating an application, for example, what are its dependencies?
  • How does it create or store data?
  • Does the data move to different servers as it is processed or is it stored centrally?
  • What languages libraries does the code depend upon?
  • You should also try and get some idea of what kind of hardware will be required
    • For instance, will the application need fifteen network cards or is it happy with one?
    • If the service provider is offering a fixed price, you should try to make sure you understand what that price covers.
    • Will there be additional charges for extra bandwidth?
    • Will the provider also support LAN traffic if required?
    • These are just a few examples, but they illustrate why each project needs to be addressed individually. In some instances, it may become evident from this exercise that a particular application is not a suitable candidate for cloud hosting.


migrate your IT infrastructure to the cloud

Steps to migrate your IT Infrastructure to the Cloud

For additional information, you can refer the Microsoft article that defines the steps to migrate your infrastructure to the Cloud.


2. Objectives and Timelines

Initially, the main objective of cloud computing was to reduce the cost of data centers. Cloud services have many advantages such as elasticity, scalability in the cloud environment. 

The main aim of this project should be clearly defined in terms of what you want to achieve with this migration and realistic timelines should be established for each phase. 

  • If you are planning to migrate an application using the same operating system as the current server, it may not be necessary to retest the application on this OS.
  • You can move some workloads to the cloud before others. For example, you might want to try out a few test and development environments in the cloud first.
  • You can migrate less complex applications first.

3. What is Software as a Service (SaaS)?

 It is the delivery of software applications over the Internet. Here are some important things you need to know about SaaS.

Choosing the Model

Assess your needs first and foremost, you must assess your business requirements and technical needs. Do you need a lot of control over the software or do you prefer it to be more customizable? This will help narrow down which type is best for you.

Selecting A Cloud Provider

When choosing a cloud provider consider: 

  • Reliability 
  • Scalability 
  • Security measures taken by providers 
  • Compliance with industry standards among others.
  • You should use cloud migration services that have been pre-qualified for your industry and are compliant with relevant regulations.
  • Service Level Agreements (SLAs): Do they align with what you want them to do?
  • Cost Structure : Try figure out various pricing models so that you can be able to estimate monthly costs. Also try to determine if there any hidden charges involved (indirect bandwidth, storage costs for example, hidden NLB costs in Azure, etc…)
  • Data Center Locations: Consider latency and data sovereignty issues when selecting different locations where your company can place backups or resources for faster access time in between these two points.

4. Preparation Before Migration


Start by backing up all data that is relevant before starting any migration process; this will help prevent loss of important information when things go wrong during the transition period.

Prepare Your Team members for the Change

Train your team members about any new systems or processes they need to know after completion of their work e.g., how servers work post-migration etc…
Address any dependencies between systems: connection between web server and database server must be stated clearly so as not forget while shifting from one place another.

Perform Tests before Migrating

  • Run some tests before migrating entirely even if it is just running one application because there could still have been made adjustments here there on other software hence overall compatibility may have been affected.
  • Proof of Concept Test migrations should be done on non production environment first before finally conducting them live.
  • If  you don’t have a lab then run few pilot migrations to find out if anything needs fixing immediately. If not, what steps can be taken in order to smoothen everything?
  • This is also helpful to identify gaps and incorrect or incomplet migration steps.

5. Migrate your IT infrastructure to the cloud

Execution steps

Recap all your systems and applications. In case it was not done in the planning phase, ensure you know all your systems and applications thoroughly before you start migration. Know the following:

  • Software, hardware, and networking infrastructure
    Validate that you understand how each system interacts with other systems and
    also the configuration of each system.
  • Complexity of each system
    Migrate less complex systems first so that you may learn from them before migrating more complex ones.
  • Data Size.
    Migrate small sized files first to learn from them before proceeding to larger ones
  • Setting up migration environment and infrastructure
    Setup migration environment and infrastructure in preparation for the process. It is important to ensure that the systems are built with a consideration of the production objectives, the testing environment and their artifacts should be able to scale in production if needed.
  • Documentation and Knowledge Transfer
    To transfer knowledge, staff should be trained on using new systems and following new processes continuously after maintenance and operation is done.

 6. Post-migration support

It is necessary that ongoing support should be given where necessary. This can include troubleshooting assistance for users who are adapting to the new systems.
Conducting reviews after migrations is important. Feedback from different people will also help in identifying areas that require improvements.

7.  Optimization

After moving systems over, it is important they should be continuously monitored so as to make sure they are efficient enough. This may need  some adjustments here and they can only be identified through close monitoring.

Keeping up-to-date with various technologies then incorporating them whenever possible would greatly contribute towards achieving better performance levels than what was initially expected out of an organization’s migrated infrastructure.

By dedicating enough time and resources for every stage during your IT migration journey these steps will guide you through a smooth transition into the new environment. In addition, always remember that communication should come first followed closely by cooperation bearing in mind that there might arise unforeseen challenges along the way.

Tell us about your project!

Tell us about your project and we’ll get back to you within 8 Business hours with a list of partners for your project.


Haven’t found what you were looking for?

Please briefly describe your question, and we’ll get back with an answer within 8 business hours.

Cloud Migration as a service