Many companies now are searching for innovations when it comes to IT initiatives.
One popular trend that has been going on for years but recently being popularized is cloud computing. With cloud data storage, businesses can be more cost-efficient since they do not have to purchase hardware and train their staff to support and maintain physical data servers. However, like with any change, there are considerations and some price to pay. In this article, we will tackle on the preparations your business has to do when engaging to the cloud.
1. Make everyone involved.
Since all employees from top to bottom will be affected by the change, the management must make sure that everyone is involved in the transition and everyone is on the same page during project integration. Some staff may have resistance since they are already used to depending on their local drives and backup drives found on their computer. They should not remain hesitant to use more advanced technologies.
Thorough explanation of what the project is all about, what’s in it for them, and how it can be done can effectively drive everybody involved to one certain direction. That is the goal of project integration. Make everybody know what is going on and what are they to do for the initiative. In this way, everybody will catch the vision and work for the vision.
2. Explain the benefits.
Management should make all staff realize the benefits of cloud computing and cloud data storage. Trainings to educate them can be one of the basic and helpful ways of deploying the change. This is to let them know how to access files and data securely from the cloud and use applications remotely. Then, they should express how the cloud is able to help them work more productively so that they can appreciate its value. It will also be helpful for companies to explain the cons just to justify their stand on cloud computing.
3. Provide a time frame.
With regards to the transition to cloud, the shift may not happen in one click of a mouse or in one shuteye. Management should give an expected time frame for the transition and implementation phases to allow everyone be boarded with knowledge and the knowhow to prepare and adopt successfully. One of the most essential and most neglected parts of transition is the training. Projects fail because of this. The group of IT professionals should be given the complete training for them to effectively handle their positions in terms of the cloud transition. This can be in a matter of three to five months or even extended to a year of training. In terms of the actual data transfer it can also take 3 months to a year, in case the company has such large volume of data that cannot be easily migrated to the new environment.
4. Review and map the business processes.
It is advisable for the management of the business to spearhead a business process analytical team to review and validate which business processes will be impacted on the transition to the cloud. Since employees have been using local storage devices and spaces and then shifting to remote storage that is cloud computing, deployment must be carefully planned. Business continuity is critical so cloud users must be able to function with similar business and support processes in case of a breakdown.
5. Check IT and security infrastructure capability and compatibility.
Everyone may be ready to conform to the change, but when the organization’s IT resources are not compatible and interoperable with cloud computing, such case is deemed to be a failure as well. Critical here is to check the network connection since the cloud largely operates depending on the speed and reliability of the Internet. Network traffic should be addressed and supported from third-party vendors or cloud computing service providers should be guaranteed to offer help every time it is needed especially in times of disasters and other emergencies.
There’s no doubt that mobility is key to members of the workforce today. Whether they are at home or in the workplace, they must be able to access the data they need to continue operations and at the same time be assured that data accessibility is protected. Cloud computing answers mobility concerns since it gives liberty to users to connect from anywhere via the web. However, moving to the cloud cannot be considered as an ordinary and easy project implementation. Rather, it necessitates everyone’s acceptance and understanding for a safe and secure transformation. In a project this big, the most critical part is the start. Project integration plays a very vital role in every project. It directs the project as to where it should go. It prevents scope creeps and it focuses all the efforts of the stakeholders. With solid guidance and advice from management and with these preparations, businesses will be able to achieve agility.
About The Author: Vanessa Parks
Vanessa Parks is a Freelance Systems Analyst and Cloud Storage Consultant. She has been an advocate of Desktop virtualization and unified computing for improved work efficiency and performance. She also has a passion in dancing, cooking and playing golf.