The challenges of migrating applications and data to the Cloud


Atlassian has announced that the Server offer (on site hosting) of its products such as Jira and Confluence will be definitively stopped at the beginning of 2024, in a few months! It is now time to prepare the migration to other licenses. For a new subscription, questions may arise to make the right choice.

Indeed, in 2021, Atlassian stopped the marketing of the Server offers, in 2022 it was no longer possible to modify the user slices, in 2023 it is no longer possible to acquire new apps and in February 2024 Atlassian will stop the support. This announcement prompted many companies using Atlassian products to ask questions about the future of their tools. As a result, companies have begun to explore the options available for migrating to the Cloud or DC. So Cloud or DC, which one to choose ?

Cloud or Data Center?

The migration to a data center license may be a more suitable solution for large enterprises that have high availability needs and high volumes of usage. Companies can benefit from greater flexibility and control over IT infrastructure, which can be particularly important for companies with specific performance and security requirements.

The Cloud or SaaS editor’s offer is suitable for all companies, whether large or small. With the Cloud offer, the companies do not have to worry anymore about the maintenance of their servers and the software updates. Atlassian handles everything. In addition, the adjustments of the license costs are done in smaller steps.

Atlassian recommends the Cloud, especially since different levels of service are offered (Standard, Premium, Enterprise) to try to meet all requirements. In addition, the limit of the number of users is now 50,000.

The benefits of a Cloud offer

Migration to the Cloud can offer a number of benefits for companies: it allows companies to reduce the costs associated with IT infrastructure and system maintenance. Companies no longer need to invest in expensive physical servers, nor spend resources on maintenance, upgrades, backup and data security. Cloud services can be easily scaled to meet the company’s growth needs. Businesses can quickly scale IT capacity as they grow, without the need for new servers or IT infrastructure. This allows companies to respond quickly to fluctuating demand and growth needs.

In addition, migrating to the Cloud enables companies to take advantage of new technologies and packaged services, especially for data, as well as global coverage and geographic replication. 

Migration to the Cloud also enables harmonization and centralization of systems, which can lead to economies of scale and better cost management. Thus, the Cloud allows companies to adapt to changes in their environment, benefit from greater agility and flexibility, rationalize their costs and strengthen the security of information systems.

According to the latest CIGREF report on Cloud migration strategies, the motivations for companies to migrate are as follows :

  • Respond to new business challenges and pressure from business departments;
  • Gain agility, reactivity, flexibility and time-to-market, deployment at scale;
  • Benefit from new technologies, packaged services and especially for data;
  • Obtain global coverage and geographic replication;
  • Harmonize and centralize systems to achieve economies at scale;
  • Secure its information systems;
  • Reduce technical debt by using managed services and automation tools offered by Cloud providers;
  • Rationalize data centers and infrastructures;
  • Adapt to business variability (peaks and valleys of activity);
  • Promote new ways of working for agile IT teams;
  • Implement a strategy to retain and attract talent via an upskilling and employee support program;
  • Integrate Devs and Ops teams more natively, with the objective of building a Biz/Sec/Ops value chain;
  • Build business platforms and open up innovation potential.

But once the migration is started, new advantages appear :

  • Enhance the value of the solutions financially and optimize IT costs;
  • Take advantage of technological opportunities that allow for a large IS inventory;
  • Make the development teams autonomous for the configuration of environments and for the production launches;
  • Develop the organization’s future hosting strategy (future of the internal datacenter and the private Cloud);
  • Evolve network topologies: abandon MPLS, deploy SD-Wan, Zero Trust strategy.

The limits of Cloud migration 

Cloud migration has undeniable benefits, but it is not without risks and limitations.

Cloud migration can be a complex process that may require advanced technical skills and meticulous planning. Companies may have difficulty in determining what to migrate. How to migrate ? When to migrate ?

Cloud migration can be costly, especially if the company needs to implement additional security measures to protect sensitive data.

Organizations may face compliance and regulatory hurdles when migrating to the Cloud. Laws and regulations can vary from country to country, which can make migration more complex and costly.

Companies may also encounter problems with the efficiency and success of Cloud migration, especially if they do not have the necessary resources or if they underestimate the migration timeline.

Cloud migration can generate security risks for sensitive company data, especially if it is stored on third-party servers. Companies need to take additional steps to protect data and ensure that service providers meet appropriate security standards.

According to the latest CIGREF report on Cloud migration strategies, the main obstacles identified are :

  • Lack of understanding of Cloud issues by executives ;
  • Regulatory requirements (OIV, industry regulations);
  • Exposure to extraterritorial laws when choosing an international provider;
  • Confidentiality of company data;
  • Protection of commercial and financial, technological and industrial secrets;
  • The expected economic performance;
  • The “cloudification” of critical systems (e.g. industrial IS);
  • The extent of the necessary investments (time, means, resources) for gains yet to be demonstrated;
  • The arbitration and prioritization of projects;
  • The imbalance in relations with certain major suppliers;
  • The problem of reversibility when you want to migrate your data or applications to another supplier;
  • The internal maturity of the organization: human resources, skills.
  • Employees may fear for the continuity of their jobs: withdrawal from their usual work perimeter, or even loss of their job. This concern can even put the brakes on Cloud migration. On-premises Cloud managers are particularly affected. These elements are discussed in more detail in the section dedicated to recruitment and training strategy.

Thus, Cloud migration has undeniable advantages, but it is not without risks and limitations. Organizations must consider these limitations when deciding to migrate to the Cloud and develop a solid migration strategy to minimize the risks and maximize the benefits.

Steps to Cloud Migration

  • Cloud migration steps begin with an audit phase to assess the readiness of existing enterprise resources to be migrated to the Cloud. This step is crucial to identify potential migration obstacles and prepare the necessary mitigation strategies.
  • The planning and control phase is an ongoing activity that is divided into 2 stages. The first stage is planning, which consists of preparing the migration plan, defining the migration objectives, planning the schedule and assigning tasks. The second stage is monitoring, which consists of regularly monitoring the progress of the migration, solving problems and adjusting the plan according to the circumstances.
  • The analysis phase is an important step that consists of studying the use of Atlassian applications. This step helps to determine the specific requirements of the users, to guarantee the compatibility of the applications and the data with the Cloud and to ensure that the migration takes place without loss of data readability.
  • The preparation phase consists of preparing the data for the transfer to the Cloud, configuring the Cloud environments, preparing tests and backup procedures.
  • Implementation is the phase where the migration steps are executed: data transfer, application configuration, backup procedures and security configuration.
  • The validation phase is crucial to ensure that the migration has gone smoothly and that the applications are working properly.
  • Migration is the phase where issues are resolved and the migration process is executed.
  • The support phase involves continuous monitoring of application and Cloud performance, problem resolution, etc.
  • Finally, training is an important step to ensure adoption of the new platform, its complementary applications, and best practices.
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