Editor's Note: This blog post was originally published on December 4, 2019 and was updated on February 11, 2021 to include the most relevant and up-to-date information.
For many companies, large and small, the transition to the public cloud can seem daunting.
Rarely do companies have all the expertise and capabilities in-house to efficiently—and safely—make the transition. And while the talent required can certainly be brought on board, not many organizations are willing or able to make the investment.
Enterprise applications in particular—especially those that are legacy apps—require a great deal of focus before making the leap to the cloud. Some applications that are critical to a business may not be effective, or even useful, in a cloud environment.
Others may be usable in the cloud but create limitations on what their users are able to do with them.
That’s where an application modernization partner comes in.
Over the years, our teams have helped many companies successfully make the transition to the public cloud. Along the way, we’ve developed a series of questions that companies should ask both internally and from potential partners—questions that should be answered before kicking off the application modernization process.
Questions to ask internally
What are you trying to achieve with the public cloud?
Migrating to the public cloud without a compelling business reason is a fool’s errand. Every roadmap needs a destination, after all, so ask yourself what a successful migration to the public cloud would look like for your company. Are you looking to accelerate your speed to market? Increase business agility? Reduce operational costs? All the above?
Which apps are critical for your company?
Not all applications are ready for the cloud. Some need a little work to fully leverage the benefits of their new environment, others need to be refactored in order to be suitable for the cloud.
While most applications can be made ready for the cloud in some form or fashion, those requiring strict security and certifications—healthcare, financial, etc.—are more likely to need refactoring.
How much are you willing to invest?
While one of the major benefits of the public cloud can be cost savings, migrating to the cloud—and modernizing or innovating upon your apps—comes with a cost both for the migration itself and ongoing support.
Once you’ve answered these basic questions, it’s time to turn the questions toward potential partners.
Questions for potential partners
How experienced are they in app modernization and innovation?
This is obviously the right question to start with. Life in the public cloud changes quickly, with new technologies seeming to arrive daily. Your partner should have extensive experience and the ability to stay on top of new opportunities. They should also have a track record that backs up their bona fides.
What is their methodology?
The ideal partner should be able to present to you a clear and proven framework for how they can help you modernize and innovate your applications for the public cloud.
This framework should:
- Help you assess your needs from the cloud
- Identify which apps can easily be lifted and shifted to the cloud, and which will require refactoring
- Assist you in developing a proof of concept for the cloud
- Chart out a path for your company to make the migration efficient and with little to no budgetary surprises
Do they provide end-to-end support?
Moving to the public cloud is a lot more complicated than flipping a switch. The right partner should be able to work with you through the process and beyond to make the migration go smoothly and ensure you keep getting the most out of the public cloud.
For more information on modernizing applications for the cloud—or to get expert help with your application modernization plans—contact one of our experts.
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