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6R’s of Cloud Migration Strategy

12 Jan 2023

Businesses worldwide are replacing legacy, on-premise technology with scalable, flexible & cost-effective cloud computing power. From reducing IT costs to enhancing agility & accelerating innovation, cloud migration is becoming a pressing requirement. A cloud migration strategy helps an organization move its data and applications from on-premises architecture to the cloud or across cloud environments. However, making the transition requires professional help with practical strategy & technical specialization.

Through this blog, we’ll provide you with a better understanding of 6R of a cloud migration strategy, best practices & benefits it can offer for your investments. So, let’s get started!

What is Cloud Migration Strategy?

It refers to the process of moving an organization’s digital assets, including IT resources, data, workloads, or applications, partially or wholly, to the cloud. It is essential for organizations moving their legacy systems to the cloud for the first time, or cloud users looking for investment optimization. And this process impacts all aspects of the organization, including people, processes & technology.

Key Benefits of Cloud Migration

Key Benefits Cloud Migration

Listed below are the crucial benefits that compel organizations of any size to migrate their resources to the public cloud.

  • Increased Flexibility & Agility: Both large & small companies get access to the cloud’s powerful tools & services. So, even small firms get the agility to respond to a new need, challenge, or opportunity. Traditionally, business expansion requires an IT setup at each new office. But with the cloud, connecting online is enough. Companies can also offer remote working to employees.
  • Greater Security: Cloud providers bear the responsibility of serving many companies, both small & large. So, they go out of their way to ensure security. They stay on top of security upgrades & trends to safeguard sensitive data. Cloud migration benefits businesses by storing their data & apps centrally and away from unwanted traffic & security threats associated with on-premise data storage.
  • Disaster Recovery: Historically, small companies have found disaster recovery expensive. Cloud services help businesses implement backup & recovery solutions while saving their time & money.
  • Ability to Innovate Faster: Cloud services allow internal IT teams to focus on initiatives important to the business by taking over the responsibility of maintaining the data infrastructure. So the company can focus on what matters the most & innovate faster.
  • Reduction in Operation Cost: On-premise servers must be maintained even when not working at total capacity during the off-season. Migrating to the cloud reduces companies’ operational costs because they pay only for the resources they use. And with Cloud managed services, the operating overheads decrease & maintenance tasks like upgrades become simple.
  • Faster Time to Market: Cloud offers agility to businesses with its services. It provides the ability to quickly build, test & deploy applications.
  • Higher Scalability: As cloud providers offer subscription-based models, it is easier to scale up & down. Companies no longer need to bear the high cost of keeping physical servers running under all conditions, making scaling down cost-effective. Similarly, they need not incur capital expenditure in increasing physical server capacity for scaling up.
  • Less Maintenance & Simplification of IT: On-premise setup requires your IT team to dedicate considerable time to equipment maintenance. And these efforts don’t directly impact your business goals. It is costly to hire skilled people full-time for the same. With Cloud migration, the service providers hire the techies & maintain the infrastructure while benefiting from economies of scale. And they charge only for your usage.

6 R’s of Cloud Migration Strategy

Popularly known as the six R’s of migration strategies, they help answer all questions about how to move IT assets to the cloud. Today, they are the fundamental guideline for almost any Cloud transformation. Let’s take a deep dive into each element of the migration strategy.


Commonly referred to as lift and shift pattern, rehosting involves using the infrastructure. It transfers data assets from on-premises to cloud infrastructure. Further, it can be automated using tools like CloudEndure Migration and AWS VM Import/Export, but it also works with manual implementation to gain maturity.

When to consider;

  • For large-scale migrations
  • If you are new to the cloud
  • Migrating off-the-shelf applications within a specified deadline

AdvancedMD, a medical professional software platform, handles highly sensitive, protected patient data. It was being spun off from its parent company, ADP, and had to move all its data out of ADP’s data center. They migrated from on-premises to Cloud with Cloud Volumes ONTAP.


Also called as Lift, Tinker, and Shift strategy, it helps to make configurational changes to the apps that better suit the cloud environment without changing its core architecture. The development teams apply this approach to change how apps interact with the database to run effectively on managed platforms like Amazon RDS.

When to consider;

  • Time-crunch migration scenario
  • Leverage cloud benefits without app refactoring
  • Migrating on-premises app with complex structure doing minor tweaks

Evernote, a notetaking and task management application, leveraged a re-platform strategy when it needed an infrastructure solution to scale for user traffic with speed, reliability & disaster recovery. They used a phased approach & migrated 5 billion notes & attachments from a private cloud to a Google Cloud Platform in 70 days.


Popular as a drop-and-shop strategy, it replaces the existing on-premise application with a cloud-native vendor-packaged software. It can be referred to as moving to SaaS (Software as a Service) application with the same capabilities. It entails making licensing changes – you can start a new license agreement with the cloud provider for their solution and discard the existing on-premise license. For instance, it is moving from the in-house CRM system to Salesforce or Hubspot. The newer, upgraded version would offer a better value coupled with higher efficiency, savings (on app storage) & even maintenance costs.

When to consider;

  • Replacing software for regular business functions like finance, accounting, CRM, ERP & more
  • The existing legacy app is not compatible with the cloud

Airbnb, a community marketplace for property owners and travelers worldwide, utilizes the company’s website & iOS & Android mobile apps for users’ activities. Due to service administration issues, they migrated cloud computing functions from their original provider to AWS. It helped them save the expense of at least one operation and provided more flexibility & simplicity.


Rearchitect or refactor strategy involves rewriting the applications from scratch to make them compatible with the cloud environment. It is usually for the apps that demand thorough modernization, including features, scalability, and performance, and cannot be achieved through minor changes to the existing architecture. It allows you to leverage the full potential of cloud-native technologies such as serverless, microservices architecture, function-as-a-service, containers, and load balancers. This approach is the most expensive, resource-intensive, and time-consuming compared to the others in the list, yet it would prove the worthiest in the long run.

When to consider;

  • Strong business drive to add scalability, speed, performance
  • Non-compatibility with an on-premise app

State Auto, a property and casualty insurer in the US, used a traditional three-tier architecture & experienced slow production on existing systems. They built a cloud-native application on AWS and cut production time to a day. AWS helped them improve the user experience & foster a culture of innovation.


It can be considered a passive strategy as there’s no natural movement. With this approach, you get rid of applications that are; 1) no longer needed, 2) are not productive for the organization’s IT portfolio. For instance, if an application is considered not worthy of migration, it can either be eliminated or downsized. It further allows assessing all the applications in terms of their uses, dependencies & cost to the company.

When to consider;

  • Archive applications that contain valuable
  • Withdraw applications with duplicate capabilities to save costs.
  • Discontinue apps where functionality can be added to one another through microservices.

Autodesk, a 3D design, engineering, and entertainment software leader, collaborated with AWS to transform from a data center/cloud hybrid model to a cloud-first one. They retired 209 application environments to improve security& UX. Migration & modernization helped achieve reduced costs & increased efficiency.


This strategy focuses on revisiting critical applications or sections of your digital assets that need significant refactoring before the migration. Some apps aren’t ready for cloud shifting due to technical, compliance, security, or cost-effective reasons. So, enterprises might implement a hybrid or part migration strategy to retain the assets.

When to consider;

  • Adopting a hybrid cloud model
  • On-premise applications are of great importance
  • The legacy app is not compatible with the cloud, while it works well on-premise

Johnson and Johnson deployed a hybrid cloud strategy by running critical workloads on AWS & some legacy applications on their data centers. It helped them automate IT, reduce the footprint of physical servers & gain business efficiency.

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Best Practices for a Successful Cloud Migration

Each project has a unique set of drivers and requirements. And based on our experience, listed below are the few steps that are pre-requisite for any project. As part of it, there are several factors & parameters to consider, including workload prioritization, pilot development, testing, and strategy alignment.

Here are some of the best practices;


  • Understanding your IT portfolio: It is vital to have a thorough technical assessment of your existing IT assets. It would comprise data, applications & infrastructure. Making a list of all the assets and their interdependencies is essential.
  • Designing your cloud migration strategy: Based on the above, one can identify the software applications that need an upgrade, what can be discarded & the need to build new apps. An experienced team can help you articulate & determine the most suitable cloud migration approach & techniques for your business. This phase also deals with finalizing how & when each asset will move to the cloud & how the team will decommission their on-premises system.
  • Defining clear goals: Create measurable outcomes you expect from the strategy for cloud migration. They should align with your business objectives & all the stakeholders should agree with them. Identify the KPIs that will help measure the cloud migration activity. The current infrastructure situation can act as the baseline for measuring improvement.
  • Estimating actual cost: Getting an accurate estimate of what the entire planned setup will cost you is critical. IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) Cloud providers offer tools like Azure & AWS pricing calculators to avoid mistakes. You can also get forecasts on how the expenses will scale up to accommodate plans.
  • Selecting the most suitable tech partner: The cloud partner’s skills, experience & reliability are crucial for the success of the migration project. As it is a long-term commitment, carefully select the right tech partner.
  • Preparing your team for the transition: It is essential to train your employees, especially the tech team, with functionalities & activities associated with a Cloud infrastructure. They could be considerably different from the on-premises infrastructure & your employees need to align with the new setup.

During Migration

  • Leveraging automated tools & managed services: Your chosen service provider can carry out cloud migration efficiently by utilizing tools to automate repetitive tasks. They can also use managed services like Amazon DynamoDB, AWS Directory Service, etc. It helps accelerate automation & decreasing downtime.
  • Monitoring Continuously: It is critical to monitor how cloud migration is progressing & if it is meeting your previously defined KPIs. Sometimes, certain events force IT teams to re-strategize cloud migration & align the outcomes with your objectives. Continuous monitoring helps in identifying deviations early & remedying them promptly.

Post Migration

  • Optimization: Actual migration is not the end of the Cloud Migration process. Your tech partner needs to check the Cloud infrastructure performance against your overall & app-specific KPIs. It helps identify gaps, if any, and validate the migration’s success. This testing phase is a part of the cloud migration strategy. The Cloud Migration process ends after your tech partner decommissions the on-premise setup.

We’ve extensive experience in moving data & applications using Amazon Web Services (AWS) & Microsoft Azure.

How Rishabh Ensures a Seamless Cloud Migration?

Selecting the right partner plays a vital role in your organization’s success. And we can work with you every step of the way. As an experienced cloud development company, we cater to businesses of all sizes and across geographies. Our team combines their strong technical knowledge with holistic strategies to support you with migrating your applications & workloads to virtualized environments or refactoring them for more efficient utilization of cloud-native services. We can develop custom cloud applications & even deploy them in public, private, or hybrid environments for you.

Here are two use cases from our experience.

Case Study: E-Learning Platform Modernization with Cloud Migration

An Australian EdTech company wanted to expand its presence. They wanted to modernize their web-based eLearning platform with new features, simple learning delivery processes & the right insights for teachers & parents.

We revamped it to a fully responsive cloud-based e-learning platform. With cloud scalability as the priority, our team consulted to utilize MS Azure as the cloud computing platform. This migration helped them better leverage Microsoft’s ecosystem capabilities.

The solution included features like:

  • Interactive & immersive learning experience with combined elements of animation & gameplay
  • Automated alerts & notifications to help teachers & parents stay updated on student activities & schedules.
  • Reporting and analytics to help both teachers & parents.
  • Automation of staff management & scheduling functions.
E-Learning Platform Modernization with Cloud Migration

Key takeaways;

  • 50% cost reduction
  • 2X increase in new student registrations
  • 40% improvement in learning outcomes

Case Study: Real-time Digital Ad Inventory Management Software Modernization with Cloud Migration

A France-based leading outdoor advertising company wanted to streamline & upgrade its legacy ad inventory system. It had time-consuming & costly manual processes across multiple disparate systems.

We re-engineered the software to track, select & deliver ad placement orders based on their live status across diverse regions. Our team recommended the AWS platform for networking, storage & computing. The revamped platform has many microservices on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances.

The solution included features like:

  • Smart intake of data from various types of order formats & converting it to a structured format
  • Integrated order delivery with real-time impact & updates on inventory & planning
  • Amalgamated order fulfillment with the integration of supplier systems that provides valuable insights
  • Real-time order monitoring with a high-level overview of inquiries, delivery status & missed opportunities
Digital Ad Inventory Management Software Modernization with Cloud Migration

Key takeaways;

  • 70% improvement in response time
  • 100% inventory utilization
  • 99% reduction in the site downtime instances

Final Words

Cloud migration is complex, but it doesn’t have to be with the proper knowledge and direction. These strategies aren’t definitive but surefire ways to get started with migration planning. The selection of approaches also depends on which model you choose or have in place for your organization. Your plan can combine some of these strategies or include all of them.

By working with a cloud migration services provider, decide what suits your needs, create a structured framework, and execute your action plan. They can help account for the challenges before confidently developing your migratory plan.

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