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Channeling Cloud Migration

How channel partners can alleviate cloud adoption and migration pain.

LogicMonitor’s Cloud Vision 2020 cloud study found that 83% of enterprise workloads will be in the cloud by 2020.

The study found that of enterprise workloads, 41% will run on public cloud platforms, 20% on private-cloud and 22% running on hybrid platforms, with on-premise workloads shrinking by 10%. It’s digital transformation initiatives/projects that is the leading factor (63%) driving public cloud adoption. Other initiatives driving cloud adoption include: an increased need for more IT agility, DevOps, mobility initiatives, AI, Machine Learning and IoT integrations.

As organizations work to digitally transform, the cloud adoption journey is more than likely the first step and can seem daunting. Of organizations with cloud migrations on the horizon, more than half will choose to work with a partner for planning and strategy and actual execution.

So how can you help? Channel agents can help their customers bring the right vendors and solutions to the table by helping them navigate the cloud adoption journey with specific and poignant questions.

Understand the why.

Poll the organization’s leaders and get to know the purpose behind the move. What are specific business objectives and goals they plan to hit? Based on specific business needs you can recommend public or private options.

Do your clients know what they want to migrate? Legacy servers or entire applications?

How will your customers determine which clouds to move to? Find out how they plan to split production workloads. Is pricing a main concern? Will they choose a cloud infrastructure based on features? Based off security and compliance? Help customers understand the multi-cloud environment they are more likely going to use.

What is their on-prem infrastructure doing as far as performance and availability compared to what it could be doing in the cloud? Assist in a conducting a performance analysis or bring in someone that can. Evaluate current applications availability, average duration, page load time, throughput, web transaction time, CPU and memory utilization, average load, response time and user satisfaction.

Help the company project cloud performance so they can choose the right size when it comes to compute needs, storage and network options for both servers and applications.

Bring department heads to the table.

Once you have a working plan with environments and potential vendors, it’s important, as the technology advisor, to bring all departments a migration can possibly affect to the table. Often with cloud migrations, it’s likely that “pain” can be experienced by many. It can impact multiple departments and groups who might not be aware of the time/cost required to shift workloads from one location to another.

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Gather all department heads and have them consider new roles, hires, culture and policies. Who needs to be hired, what skills are required to manage infrastructure. If the company chooses a vendor for active management then less consideration is needed for new cloud roles which would include performance monitoring and analysis.

It’s also equally important to reassure customers the cost savings benefit with their decision. Work with vendors you plan to quote to further communicate monies saved with capital and operational costs associated with underutilized equipment, space, power, cooling expenses, you name it. Also communicate opportunity costs, the shifting of resources now that they no longer have to manage data centers. Work with vendors to communicate new operational efficiencies, i.e. availability of new apps, scalability, more transparency and presence globally for the business to run workloads better.

Bring the right vendors to the table.

Benefits of a managed cloud migration with the right solution provider are plentiful. The right vendor assists and eases the client experience, responds quickly and orchestrates seemlessly behind the scenes.

Are you recommending a solution provider’s cloud platform? Their own virtual data center? Whomever you recommend what is their documented workflow process? How do they work with your customer to determine the migration strategy, can they migrate applications one at a time or all at once? Do they use project management software for server migrations and acceptance testing, how do they ensure minimal downtime with limited disruption to work? Provide your customers with the supplier’s documented maintenance and support of their migration services. How does the customer pay for migration services? All at once, by the hour?

Now what?

You recommended vendor(s) to help your customer migrate, but you’re not done. Make sure to conduct follow up and check in meetings with your customers and see about their cloud spend. Identify ways to optimize. How is their service going? Has their performance improved? Help document improvements or needs to plan for next year’s investments, augmentations and changes.

Lean on TBI’s solution engineers and your channel manager to help bring in the right resources for both architecting the right solutions and vendors and planning for future upgrades.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
As Director of Marketing at TBI, Cohen is responsible for managing TBI’s marketing communications and implementing multi-channel branding and press strategies. In addition to driving TBI’s overall marketing strategy, Cohen directs both internal and external communications to ensure the delivery of valued products and programs to providers and partners alike. You can contact Corey at ccohen@tbicom.com or connect with her on LinkedIn.