Have you decided to relocate some or all your organization's infrastructure to a cloud services provider (CSP) such as Microsoft, Google, or Amazon? If so, the next step is to consider who will serve as your cloud migration services partner. The right consultant can get you to the cloud securely and cost-effectively while enhancing performance. But ... not all cloud migration services partners are created equal.
Moving your company infrastructure and applications to the cloud can be a complex process. Often, businesses find they lack the experience and in-house resources needed for the outcome they desire. To overcome this skills gap, companies can seek out the expertise of a cloud migration services partner to help securely and efficiently migrate to a well-designed cloud environment.
During your search for a cloud migration partner, you may find that some consultants also provide an array of managed IT services, better known as Managed Services Providers (MSP). Finding an MSP with cloud migration expertise can not only provide a safe cloud transition but can also provide the additional benefit of ongoing cloud services to manage and protect your business in the cloud.
Qualifications for a Cloud Migration Services Partner
It is critical to have your initial cloud migration project properly evaluated and configured to meet your unique business needs and industry standards for security and compliance. A quality cloud migration services partner will work with you to guide you through this process and keep your data secure.
Take time to find a trusted partner to ensure your cloud migration is done right the first time and maximize your cloud investment for small and mid-size cloud solutions.
Below are some recommended focus areas to investigate. Your organization may have some specific requirements; however, the competencies listed here are industry agnostic.
Business Health and Processes
- Check to see the MSP has a yearly SOC 2 audit completed, as not all do. This document provides insight into the effectiveness of their internal controls and trust in their ability to properly handle sensitive data and processes.
- It is prudent to check that appropriate insurance coverage and healthy bottom line financials are maintained by a prospective partner.
- The MSP should demonstrate a high level of knowledge about your industry to make proper recommendations.
- Thoroughly review the service level agreements (SLAs) and if they accommodate your specific needs around response times, resolution times, support hours, and more.
- When looking at ongoing support, consumption reporting for cloud data usage and controls for monitoring and tracking services should be available.
Migration and Security Processes
- The MSP should use standard application interfaces that align with your current or future cloud environment to ensure a smooth migration with cloud connections.
- Once migrated, mechanisms should be in place to continuously monitor and analyze your network looking for deviations and potential security risks.
Governance and Security Practices
- Evaluate whether the MSP has a mature IT security services practice. This is important, as a shared responsibility model exists for cloud services between you and the CSP, e.g., Microsoft. Once you are in the cloud, the security responsibilities you retain (e.g., data, access, and identities) need to be backed by a solid cloud security strategy.
- Assess the MSP's focus on comprehensive security policies and governance processes. Ensure they prioritize addressing critical risks and support your internal security policies.
- Look to see that the MSP has documented business continuity/disaster recovery planning, data backup/retention policies and procedures in place.
Attaining Top-Level Partnerships
- Moving your business to the cloud is a complicated process, and why it is essential to seek out an MSP with intimate knowledge of your selected CSP platform. Providers who comply with and maintain top-level recognition are held to rigorous standards to demonstrate their expertise and adhere to industry best practices.
A strategic move to the cloud is an operational business decision with financial implications. Ensuring your data is secured and optimized for cost and performance can be achieved by partnering with an experienced and trusted MSP. At Systems Engineering, we have the proven experience and expertise to get you to the cloud securely and cost-effectively. Our added service excellence attained through tenured Gold Microsoft Partnership and Premier Support for Partners agreements extends our capabilities. It makes us the right choice to take on the most challenging and advanced cloud environments.
If you are looking to transition your company to the cloud, but don't have the necessary migration capabilities in-house, contact Systems Engineering to fill those gaps in your existing IT operations for cloud migration.
Connect with us at email@example.com or call 888.624.6737. Customers, please get in touch with your Systems Engineering Account Manager.