Cloud computing is estimated to shoot up from $67 billion in 2015 to a whopping $162 billion by 2020, with a compound annual growth rate of 19%.
Although cloud has become a popular buzzword among businesses worldwide today, like any other computing solution pros and cons are associated with the migration of data to the cloud as well. Small, medium, and large organizations are increasingly moving data to their own private cloud or a public cloud. With a lot of applications being exclusively developed for storing and managing data in the cloud, it is now everywhere.
However, there is still a huge section of naysayers, who think whether cloud data management is a good idea or not. This is because while cloud computing offers the advantage of being completely scalable and highly cost-effective, it poses some hidden costs and risks too. Therefore, it is essential to analyze the pros and cons of data migration and then strike a balance between the risks and rewards before migrating data to cloud.
Opportunities of migrating data to cloud are numerous and several organizations are already reaping the benefits of data migration to cloud. However, following are some of the major benefits of data migration -
Companies can forgo huge upfront investments on servers, PCs and other data storage devices by migrating data to the cloud. Therefore, when businesses move data to cloud they can safely store enormous data without investing in IT infrastructure.
Data migration to cloud can offer immense benefits when businesses need to collaborate on a project. Data shared on the cloud can be easily accessed by such employees and they can also work simultaneously on shared documents. Besides, cloud computing enables team members to log in and work from anywhere to access data in case of emergencies.
When data is on local servers or PCs, busy businesses often tend to neglect the task of taking regular back up of all the stored data. However, data migration to cloud offers a good backup behavior. Cloud providers offer superior data backup solutions and data management applications in cloud to ensure that the data backup is regularly carried out to prevent any loss of data.
Businesses can pay for exactly what they use and how much they use after data migration to cloud. Besides, companies can also benefit from timely upgrading software without any extra costs, as it is often done by the cloud service providers.
Data migration to cloud will make disaster recovery much easier, as the cloud systems are often set up to automatically back up data at regular intervals and recovering all the updated information in case of emergencies.
Although cloud computing has gone mainstream, not all organizations are on board with the idea of moving to their data to cloud due to the challenges of data migration. Evaluating each of these challenges will help businesses in making informed decisions. Some of the major drawbacks of data migration are -
Internet connection with good bandwidth is essential to access cloud data and download/upload the files from/to the cloud, after data migration. Even if the cloud service provider loses connectivity or if the business experiences an Internet outage, then there is business downtime until the connectivity is restored. Therefore, maintaining a consistent Internet connection is necessary while migrating some or all business data to the cloud.
If businesses have large amount of data to be transferred to the cloud, then data outbound transfers that go beyond the basic monthly allowance will be charged, mostly on per-GB basis. For businesses that require regular downloading of data from cloud data storage or cloud applications, additional costs might get added up. Moreover, while migrating all data to the cloud, there could be some initial unexpected migration issues, such as getting your in-house staff accustomed to access data in the cloud.
Although established cloud providers have been promoting their ideas of having most sophisticated and latest data security systems in place, NSA snooping scandal has made us rethink on storing all the critical and confidential data on cloud. As data stored in cloud is easily accessible from anywhere on the Internet, data breach due to careless password security or hacking can result in compromise of your critical business data.
Some cloud apps are inflexible and this could be a serious disadvantage to businesses moving their data to cloud. Besides, some cloud computing vendors have data formats and applications, which do not allow easy conversion or transfer of data into the system. All these might compel businesses to move from one cloud migration accounting market to another, which could be a painful process.
Deep-rooted differences between the business and the vendor systems make it difficult to move from one platform to another. Some of the vendors also lock their customers using proprietary software, making it very expensive or impossible to switch to a different cloud vendor. While reconfiguring applications to meet business needs can be expensive, the migration can expose critical data to privacy and security vulnerabilities.
With all the drawbacks, cloud computing still exhibits immense potential to support different business models. It serves as a great opportunity for businesses of every size to offload the costs and the hassles of IT management. However, security issues associated with having critical business data out on cloud seem to be the biggest concern of business owners today.
Therefore, the best option would be to follow tried and tested data migration strategies and take tips for data migration to cloud from businesses, which have already migrated their data to cloud. Moving some of the data to the cloud and then analyzing how it goes will prevent major data breach. As the platforms continue to mature, the costs are expected to fall and the security standards are expected to improve.
Flatworld Solutions is a leading company providing quality data management services to global clients for over 17 years now. With businesses increasingly moving to cloud platforms at a faster rate, we have updated ourselves with all the latest developments and can help you if you are planning to migrate your data to cloud. Our multi-domain industry experience enables us to provide quick and efficient services at cost-effective rates. We also have the required infrastructure and follow stringent quality control measures to provide customized data management solutions to clients across various industry sectors.
Just get in touch with us if you need any type of assistance with migrating your critical business data to the cloud.