Many enterprises adopt cloud computing technologies to manage their applications and data efficiently without building and maintaining on-premise IT infrastructure. A number of studies even show that enterprises can invest in cloud computing technologies to boost revenue growth, secure corporate and business data, speed up disaster recovery, and meet government compliance requirements. Unlike small businesses and start-ups, the large and existing enterprises often find it challenging to migrate their applications to the cloud . But enterprises still need to address a number of challenges in cloud computing adoption and implementation to take advantage of cloud technologies.
Understanding Common Challenges in Cloud Computing Adoption and Implementation
- Picking the Right Cloud Service Models
The enterprises have the option to choose from different types of cloud computing – private, public and hybrid. Likewise, they have an option to avail computing resources over the internet through a number of cloud service models – Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS) . Enterprises often find it challenging to decide the right cloud computing platform and cloud service models according to their precise business requirements and goals.
- Integrating On-Premise and Cloud Infrastructures
The large enterprises cannot migrate all their software applications to the cloud. Likewise, they need time to migrate all corporate and customer data to the cloud. Hence, the enterprises have to maintain the on-premise IT infrastructure in addition to building a customized cloud computing environment. The enterprises cannot carry out their business operations smoothly without integrating the on-premise and cloud infrastructures smoothly. Often businesses find it challenging to integrate on-premise and IT infrastructures due to a number of internal and external issues.
- Reskilling and Upskilling Existing Employees
The cloud infrastructure is completely different from on-premise infrastructure. The existing employees of an organization need specialized knowledge and skill to work with the cloud-based services and technologies. The organization must reskill and upskill the existing staff to keep their efficiency and productivity intact in the new cloud environment. It must provide adequate training to the existing staff to leverage cloud-based tools to optimize business processes. Many enterprises find it challenging to educate and train employees about cloud technologies.
- Resolving Data Security and Privacy Issues
Once an enterprise migrates its corporate and customer data to the cloud, the sensitive data will be stored and processed in a remote location. The enterprise will lack the option to monitor the data storage location and prevent data breaches. Hence, no enterprise can take advantage of cloud computing fully without addressing many issues relates to privacy and data security. The leading cloud service providers make it easier for businesses to keep their data secured by providing an array of robust security features and tools. But enterprises still find it challenging to eliminate chances of data loss completely and ensure immediate data recovery.
- Making Adequate Bandwidth Available
When an enterprise opts for cloud computing, it needs to consume the required computing resources over the internet. Leading cloud service providers enable businesses to access and scale computing resources according to their current needs. But no enterprise can run its software applications smoothly in the cloud without investing in additional bandwidth. The bandwidth consumes by individual software applications will differ. Normally, the complex and data-intensive software applications will require more bandwidth than the simple and lightweight applications. Often organizations find it challenging to meet bandwidth requirements without incurring additional cost.
- Maintaining Software Applications’ Functionality and Performance
The performance of a software application directly depends on its deployment environment and infrastructure. When the enterprise applications run in the cloud, their functionality and performance will depend directly on the quality of cloud services. Leading cloud service providers make it easier for businesses to run their applications in the cloud by providing a set of robust tools and services. They even help enterprises to monitor the performance of software applications consistently and identify the issues on time. But the enterprises still lack the option to optimize the functionality and performance of their software applications directly.
- Reducing Vendor Lock-in Period
An enterprise has the option to choose from many cloud service providers. But the enterprises often lack the option to switch their software applications and data from one cloud platform to another. They have to invest additional resources and funds to streamline and speed up the cloud service migration. Also, they need to deal with a critical issue like vendor lock-in. Many analysts believe that vendor lock-in is the most crucial challenge in cloud computing adoption. Most cloud service providers include specific clauses in the agreement to lock-in customers. Hence, enterprises often find it challenging to switch from one cloud service to another.
On the whole, each enterprise has to address a number of issues and challenges while adopting and implementing cloud computing. However, the cloud computing challenges may differ from one enterprise to another. It is always important for the business to identify and address specific cloud computing adoption challenges by implementing a robust cloud implementation and migration strategy.