The benefits to organizations using cloud technology are growing constantly, making the option to use the cloud a clear one. This leaves one question for organizations that haven’t yet started taking advantage of all the cloud has to offer: when is the right time to migrate to the cloud?
This Might Be the Right Time to Migrate to the Cloud
1. When You Need a Competitive Advantage
The cloud’s game-changer is a competitive advantage. It lets you shift a significant number of IT resources from dreary roles like maintenance to forward-thinking and mission-critical objectives. You can spend more time building systems to grow your business and less time supporting systems that simply run it.
Cloud technology itself offers plenty of competitive advantage opportunities, too. Two of the biggest are:
- Real-time data
- Mobile access
Real-time data affects everything from managerial reporting and decision-making to supply chain tracking and requisitioning. It can lower warehousing costs, improve inventory turnaround times, and reduce out-of-stocks.
Mobile access provides flexibility for both management and the workforce. The ability to access your data from virtually anywhere has far-reaching implications. Decision-makers can consult real-time data on the road, at a conference, or even in the middle of an important meeting. And employees are more productive when they can access their systems from anywhere, rather than wasting time traveling back and forth to a workstation or cubicle.
2. When Your Competition Arrives on the Cloud
Another signal that it’s the right time to migrate to the cloud is when you see your competition “arriving” there first.
We briefly discussed some of the cloud’s major benefits in the section above. Those benefits are just as advantageous for your competitors as they are for you. Whether they use lower cost structures to compete at lower prices, streamlined business processes to better delight clients and partners, or accelerate release cycles to offer brand new services you simply can’t match outside of the cloud… they’ll use all of those advantages against you, whittling away at your market share.
The best answer is to follow them into the cloud and get on an equal playing field. And better yet, use the cloud in more effective and innovative ways that can bring you the greater advantage.
3. When Your B2B Partners Needs You To Go Cloud-Native
What happens when your B2B partners start implementing cloud systems? Whether you’re “up-chain” or “down-chain” they’re going to want you in the cloud, too.
If the relationship is strong, your partner might give you some additional time to transition. More likely, though, you’ve been aware of this shift for a while now. If you still haven’t made any moves toward the cloud yet, it’s quite possible they’ll be looking for new cloud-enabled partners.
In this way, companies with cloud computing capabilities will naturally be drawn together. It’s not hard to envision which supply chains will become the dominant forces in every industry. Modern, cloud-enabled supply chains taking advantage of real-time data will surge to the front, while those built on older, slower mainframe or on-premise systems will lag increasingly far behind.
4. When You Need New Software
Sometimes, you’re forced to make a decision simply because the software currently in use dictates it. An upgrade for compatibility reasons or because the old software is no longer supported might be necessary. Either way, this is a sign that it’s the right time to migrate to the cloud.
The great part about moving to the cloud is that you don’t have to do it all at once. You can migrate systems on an as-needed basis, or at a more rapid pace to gain competitive advantage. Since most cloud services are offered on “pay for use” subscriptions, you don’t have to invest in more than you really need up front. And since the architecture is already there, you simply use as little – or as much – of it as you want.
5. When Your Systems Infrastructure Needs An Update
Another good time to migrate to the cloud is when your technology infrastructure needs to be updated or overhauled. This can be a huge expense, especially for companies with many locations.
Sometimes, such overhauls are necessitated by obsolescence. But often they’re due to growth and expansion. In these cases, a shift to the cloud might reduce the cost of your overhaul – or even forestall it completely. Each time you move processing and data capabilities to the cloud, it reduces the load on your internal equipment and resources.
And that leads us to one of the cloud’s other “most valuable” benefits: it is fully scalable and future-proof for any size your business grows. If you double your sales and/or inventory over the next year, no problem. You don’t need to make frantic, costly upgrades to your infrastructure. You simply update your cloud computing account to reflect the increased usage. For some companies, this alone can save them millions of dollars.
6. When Your Budget Can Handle Doing It Right
Maybe you’re excited by all the many benefits of the cloud. But it’s simply not in your budget. Or so you think.
In many cases, the cost savings of moving to the cloud can be grossly undervalued. In fact, the reductions in maintenance, support, and infrastructure can offset most migration costs in a remarkably short time, and sometimes even immediately.
How you migrate makes a huge difference, too. A change management program can improve your ROI, and finding the dollars to fund your cloud migration could be far easier than you expect.
The Right Time to Migrate to Google Cloud is Now
With the cloud, you can start wherever it makes sense for your business, with as many (or as few) applications as you like. Google Cloud clients see a 221 percent return on investment after just three years of adoption. With rich big data capabilities, robust managed services offerings, and solutions designed to support your infrastructure as you scale — making the switch to Google Cloud can bring new possibilities to your team and business.
Get Started with Google Cloud
Learn more about the Google Cloud migration process today.