It was only a few years ago when cloud technology was a new and innovative phenomenon. At that time the public could hardly wrap their mind around this technology, but today, businesses and the public utilize this technology regularly. “As a result, organizations are catching onto cloud migration and the benefits that go along with these storage solutions,” explains John Carey, a Director at ES Technology, a division of The Execu|Search Group. According to a Cloud Vision 2020 survey, it is estimated that 83% of the enterprise workload will be on the cloud by 2020.
According to a report from Cloud Security Alliance, despite potential security concerns or compliance challenges, the benefits of cloud migration are clear: Not only does it allow for scalability with new technologies, but companies find that they are able to significantly lower their costs. “Moving away from on-prem storage to cloud-based storage frees up budget that would normally be allocated to space for the servers as well as maintenance and personnel costs associated with upkeeping,” says John. “As these shifts occur, IT professionals will find that their role during that time is critical, and they should be prepared to help facilitate a smooth transition.”
For cloud architects and cloud engineers, the increase in companies looking to migrate to a cloud solution means more opportunities. “In the last few years, the number of organizations looking to hire cloud architects and engineers has skyrocketed,” explains John. “If you’re specializing in this field, you’ll see a lot more opportunity to build your skillset and advance in your career.”
For in-house IT roles like Systems/Network Administrators and Systems/Network Engineers, John warns that they may face a challenging transition, but it can be extremely rewarding. “For in-house roles, you’ll likely either get on the job training for the cloud transition or the opportunity to be certified by the cloud provider your company has chosen,” he says. “While the cloud migration itself is a difficult process, it will set you up to further advance in your career.”
Differences in each cloud service
If you’re in one of these roles, understanding the differences in each cloud storage solution and implementation is key. “The three most popular solutions are AWS [Amazon Web Services], Azure by Microsoft, and Google Cloud, and understanding the differences in each and communicating that to the rest of the organization can be critical,” says John. “Brushing up on your technical skills and perhaps even earning a certification in one of these popular services can not only help the business through the transition, but assist you further in your career.”
Learning the business side
In addition to brushing up on technical skills that may be pertinent to handling a cloud migration, John notes that tech professionals should be prepared to dive into the business side as well. “Companies are spending a lot of money on these transitions, and they’re relying on you more than ever to ensure that they’re making the right decisions,” explains John. “If you’re able to successfully handle the vendor management throughout the migration process, leaders within your organization will certainly take note of that contribution.”
In addition to managing the vendor, it’s important to recognize that no two cloud migration processes are identical. “Every organization would integrate with the cloud differently,” says John. “Because of that, it’s important that you’re able to consider the specific needs of this company and think critically about how to solve their unique challenges through the cloud migration process.” The more you’re able to anticipate roadblocks, communicate effectively with the vendor, and handle issues as they arise, the smoother the transition will be for everyone involved.