August 12, 2020

2020 Cloud Migration Guide

by: Katie Sloane

Cloud adoption has increased exponentially over the past decade as it provides numerous business benefits — elasticity, robust cybersecurity, agility and cost-efficiency, to name a few.

Regardless of your reason to migrate to the cloud or change deployment methods, an outcomes-oriented approach and understanding your business requirements will help you determine the proper cloud solution and IT partner to move your organization forward and achieve digital transformation.

In this article, you’ll discover:

  • Preliminary steps to consider when exploring migration options;
  • The differences between public, private and hybrid clouds;
  • Security features to safeguard business assets;
  • And more! 

Migration Facilitation

Migrating to the cloud may seem complex, but with the right IT partner, tools and processes, it can be seamless, secure and pain-free. To begin your journey, the most practical question to address is how the cloud migration will be executed. Secondly, you’ll want to establish what your expectations are from the service provider during and after the move.

To identify the right cloud solution, you may require the help of an IT partner that offers managed, secure cloud migration services. An experienced provider will complete a current state assessment to obtain critical information for migration planning and ascertain overarching project objectives. 

Further, both the migration and the future state of your environment can be designed during the planning stage to decrease risk in accordance with your business’ priorities. Align, for example, analyzes a client’s existing pain points and determines how to mitigate them from a stakeholder perspective in your new cloud infrastructure. 

Comparing Cloud Models

When deciding on the appropriate cloud environment for your company, it’s essential to understand the differences between various deployment methods. 

Private cloud infrastructure is either hosted within a service provider’s data center or onsite. Companies may consider a private cloud for customization offered on storage and networking. Many investment advisors, financial service firms and fund managers turn to the public cloud for its copious advantages, including scalability, flexibility, security and cost-effectiveness. If you require a combination of on-premise resources, public and private clouds, a hybrid cloud architecture could be viable.

Unlike private cloud models, the public cloud enables organizations to seamlessly scale up and down on infrastructure to meet fluctuating demand and business growth. Align’s Managed Cloud Services clients avail from passive innovation within the public cloud from a technology, governance and accessibility standpoint. 

Despite common misconceptions associated with public cloud, users report greater data security, sophisticated cloud cybersecurity and advanced threat protection in this deployment model. For a registered investment advisor (RIA), this is especially valuable when addressing investor due diligence and regulatory challenges.

When deciding which cloud best fits your business, it’s critical to find a solution that meets your fund’s immediate and future needs, from data governance and billing structure to reliability and on-demand capacity. 

Extending Existing Investments and Infrastructure

Many cloud providers support third-party networking usage, allowing you to continue leveraging your on-premises network. This will not only save your organization money, but it can help you avoid mixing too many networking technologies and simplify processes.

In addition to maintaining the existing network, you might have virtual environments that require preservation. Depending on the deployment method, some cloud solutions enable you to extend workloads from your data center to the public cloud, which can help augment the current abilities of your environment. 

Security and Transparency

Effective cloud solutions provide firms with the transparency necessary to oversee their environment, improve security posture and decrease risk exposure.

Cloud providers who build solutions around enterprise platforms, such as Microsoft Azure or Amazon Web Services (AWS), can utilize built-in cybersecurity risk management features. Network and web application firewall capabilities offer robust infrastructure security while encrypting data in transit and at rest can defend sensitive, proprietary information.

Additionally, many cloud-based platforms are designed to fend off DDoS attacks, mitigating potential revenue loss, service interruptions, downtime and other devastating damages caused by nefarious acts.

Whether you’re ready to move part of your environment to the cloud or decide to go “all-in,” consider all of your options and ensure that the cloud solution you select can meet your unique business objectives.

Real Results

Through leveraging Align’s award-winning cloud solutions and migration expertise, numerous organizations have achieved operational excellence, reduced IT purchasing and maintenance costs, improved performance and empowered their employees to be more efficient.

Contact us by clicking here, or on the button below, and discover how partnering with Align, a Microsoft Tier 1 Cloud Solutions Provider (CSP) and Gold Partner, can positively impact your business and enable IT budget optimization.

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“Align is our trusted provider for all our Managed Services and cybersecurity needs. They provide us best-in-class IT services that not only help drive productivity and growth, but ensure we meet both current and evolving compliance and security requirements with ease. As consultants to financial advisors, trust and reliability are indispensable to our operations, which is why we never hesitate to refer Align to our very own client base. Align isn’t just our partner, they are an extension of our team. We look forward to entrusting them with our IT infrastructure for years to come.”

Ed Fasano - Experienced Advisory Consultants LLC