Cloud Data Migration Roadmap for Small and Medium Businesses

cloud migration for small business

1. Introduction

Having a cloud data migration project roadmap that meets all the standard guidelines is not the best for SMBs. Instead, the migration project roadmap must include specific parameters that address the pain points, e.g., specific technical challenges or payment structure.

We carefully analyzed the pain points of our past SMB customers and have put across a specific project roadmap that resonates with cloud migration for small and medium businesses.

2. Data Segregation to Keep the Expenses in Check

To cut to the chase, switching to a new cloud suite is a significant expense and therefore keeping the migration costs in check is a high priority for many SMBs. And to do this, segregating data is the key.

Divide the overall source cloud data into two sections:

  • One that is critical
  • Another that is not needed or less useful

Many of our SMB customers archive a small section of data that is not useful; we recommend doing the same to lower the total critical data size and eventually keep the overall migration expense in check.

Data segregation

3. Finalizing the Commercial Agreements

Reviewing, amending, and finalizing commercial agreements are needle movers in most medium and small business migration projects.

During the initial onboarding phase, ensure that you or your team provides the migration partner with accurate scope of work. This helps keep the migration costs precise to your requirements. Also, ensure that the migration quote is transparent.

With CloudFuze, there are no additional or hidden costs. We offer transparent pricing which helps our customers streamline the commercial agreement.

4. Planning Which Data Goes Where

For many SMBs, the source cloud data can be spread in such a complex way that it becomes difficult to make sense of. Here are some of such complexities we found to be common in our past SMB customers:

  • Almost all data stored in only one single source cloud admin account
  • Data shared in a silo with different departments of the company
  • Specific inner folders and files shared with select departments
  • Many root folders shared with a waterfall permission flow (especially in Box Business)

Helping the migration manager identify some of these primary complexities in your company’s source cloud account works great for planning which data goes where.

For example, when migrating to SharePoint Online, rearranging source cloud folders in a hierarchy structure may help your IT team bring order to the chaos. Or having a flat structure within SharePoint may help your team simplify things altogether.

Data mapping

Our migration managers have a deep understanding of the architecture of the clouds we support. With their assistance, mapping the migration paths becomes more efficient.

5. Choosing the Migration Environment

Choosing the right migration environment is just as crucial for medium and small business migrations as for enterprises.

Many of our SMB customers want to keep the migration simple and choose the cloud migration environment. But we have also had many SMB customers choosing an on-prem environment over the cloud environment.

It all comes down to the level of data sensitivity protection your IT team prefers. Cloud-hosted migration environments are totally secure, but if you, your CTO, and the IT Team want to keep the data within their parameters, an on-prem environment is the best option.

Migration environment

Hassle-free deployment makes CloudFuze a market-leading option for on-prem-hosted migrations. Our migration team helps businesses configure the platform within their data centers.

6. Reviewing and Amending the Project Management Roadmap

If the project management roadmap of the migration service provider is not in sync with what your company wants, the migration project may not be a complete success.

Your company may not have the bandwidth to allocate IT resources to prepare the migration project roadmap. In that case, we recommend having one or more meetings to review and amend the migration project management plan of the service provider.

Here are some of the areas to cover during project management review meetings:

  • Handholding of the project through a dedicated project or migration manager
  • Reviewing folder and file structure arrangements in the destination cloud
  • Source cloud folders, files, and user accounts re-arrangements required from your end
  • Process for resolving transfer rate throttling
  • Process for resolving folders/files that may go into conflict
  • Data transfer speed management
  • Server configurations
  • Data reconciliation protocols
  • One-time migration review after completion
  • Delta migration plan
  • Post-migration support

Project management plan review

We schedule multiple project management discussion calls with our customers as part of our managed migration service. This helps them better understand our migration managers’ plans to set the project in motion.

7. Finalizing the Migration Timeline

Timeline is a critical metric in measuring the agility of cloud migration for small and medium businesses. And without having a clear picture of the migration timeline, it becomes complicated to gauge whether the project is moving forward on time as planned.

We recommend planning a realistic timeline that sets the right expectations. Here’s an example that shows a timeline plan from the migration start to end date.

Migration timeline

Also, factor in the onboarding time if your company’s source cloud plan expires soon and you have a tight deadline to complete the entire migration.

8. Tweaking the Migrated Data

Clouds such as Google Drive and OneDrive share many similarities, and when migrating data from one to another, a significant change in the data structure may not be necessary. But when moving to a totally different cloud, restructuring data may be the only option.

For example, a significant percentage of our SMB customers with Box to Microsoft 365 migration requirements choose to restructure data in Microsoft 365, especially in SharePoint Online.

If your company wants to approach the migration as an opportunity to rearrange folders/files and restructure the data flow, the best way to ensure precision is to angle the data migrated to the destination cloud.

Work with each department head (or point of contact) within your company to:

  • Tweak the root folder and files names to refine the new destination cloud data structure
  • Point misaligned files to the correct folders
  • Review if all department-wise permissions are intact in the migrated data

With CloudFuze, accuracy in cloud migration for small and medium businesses is uncompromised. Our migration team’s in-depth pre-migration analysis ensures that migration is never hit-or-miss. You can avoid post-migration work such as data angling with the end-to-end support from our managed migration service team. Learn more from them.