07.01.21

AWS Cloud Migration: How To Determine First-Mover Workloads

By Agustin Romano
#AWSCloudMigration - How To Determine First-Mover Workloads

Cloud Migration takes a lot of planning and assessments to shift workloads safely without interrupting your business. The cloud infrastructure is limitless with a range of benefits. Still, it also poses some complications along the process, especially for those companies who want to move their critical workload without disturbing their running operations. 

So how exactly should workload be determined? And when exactly is a company ready to shift its workloads? We will answer these questions and further discuss the benefits of Cloud Migration and some tips to save your time and resources.

Assessing Readiness for Cloud Migration

Optimize a Cloud Readiness Assessment to help you prioritize workloads for successful migration to the cloud. With this assessment, you’ll be able to plan how you can easily shift workloads to the cloud without disrupting your business.

This assessment is necessary to develop a cloud migration plan. Gap Analysis also helps determine which workloads are normal and critical to transfer to the cloud.

Cloud Readiness Assessment BreakDown

Here is a breakdown of assessment to effectively plan your migration without wasting your budget and time:

  • The current technology should be assessed, including all the on-premise hardware or any storage devices that a company is currently using for its operations.
  • Auditing current security infrastructure to find any vulnerabilities in current security mechanisms. It will allow us to implement better security infrastructure while on the cloud.
  • Identifying current issues that the company is facing with on-premise infrastructure. Calculate the current costs and expected cloud costs for your workload and assess the benefits.

The readiness assessment will help in many different ways. Companies will know about their current infrastructure and the problems they are facing. Also, it will help to estimate the migration budget along with all the operational disruptions that might occur during the shift. 

Cloud Migration Benefits for Applications

Leveraging cloud Infrastructure over on premises can benefit an organization in many different ways, but the following are some of the major benefits that leave the biggest impact.

Security

Application security is a major concern in our traditional systems. Many cloud providers such as AWS prioritize the security of their customers by using a “shared responsibility” model. In this model, both the customer and AWS are responsible for the security and compliance of networks, applications, and systems.

Scalability

Cloud architecture offers a scalable model for your business without any specific limit on resources. Businesses can scale according to their customers and needs. They can easily extend their current resources to scale up without disrupting the current functioning of their business.

Unlike traditional systems, you can expand your business on the cloud within the current infrastructure. This improves the efficiency, productivity, and overall growth of your business. 

Cost

Traditional infrastructure carries multiple operational and maintenance costs. Due to fixed costs, business often pays for the extra resources they never used. 

However, a cloud provider like AWS only charges you based upon the resources used by your company. It significantly reduces your operational costs, and businesses can reinvest up to 70% of their saved costs back into their business.

For more about improving your cloud costs on AWS, read Optimizing AWS Architecture for Cost Management.

Accessibility

Cloud data is accessible 24/7 without any downtime. Cloud infrastructure facilitates your business with instant access to your company data despite your location or time. However, traditional systems often undergo maintenance, and accessibility is also limited to the physical space.

The cloud infrastructure is more flexible, accessible, and scalable than any other traditional model. Hence, migrating to the AWS cloud is a wise option for SMBs.

Selecting & Prioritizing First-Mover Workloads for AWS Migration

The goal of cloud migration is to shift your current workload without disturbing any operations of a company. It is only possible to select and prioritize specific workloads while other components continue to function in an on-premise environment.

While prioritizing your applications and workload for cloud migration, it is important to select those applications first that will benefit your businesses the most. Here is a step-by-step approach to prioritize workload:

Step 1: Prioritize Tier-One Workloads 

Tier-One workloads consist of all those applications that are not mission-critical. Applications in this category do not pose much risk to the operations of your business. First-Movers should migrate tier-one workloads at priority to prevent any downtime. 

This type of workload may consist of such applications that do not require 24/7 execution. Seasonal applications and other environments such as sales demo and training labs also fall under this category.

Step 2: Migrating Tier-2 Workload

Tier-2 workload normally consists of low-risk applications. These applications are also not mission-critical, and they pose very little risk to your current operations. 

Applications in this category have a 24/7 execution period, but they are not too critical to disrupting the normal functioning of a company’s infrastructure. This makes migrating such applications a second priority.

Step 3: Identification of Tier-3 Workload

This category consists of all the mission-critical applications in a company. These applications normally host on-premises locations with the utmost protection and disaster recovery plans. Also, they are important to keep everything operational inside a company.

All applications in this category need technical expertise to migrate successfully by minimizing any operational disruption inside a company. 

Leverage the Crawl-Walk-Run methodology in cloud migration by prioritizing applications that have the least impact on your business and then slowly moving to the mission-critical applications at the end. 

Pre-Migration Planning – Importance

A systematic and documented strategy is important to make cloud migration smooth without facing any huge loss. The planning phase saves businesses from making mistakes that may lead to some challenges.

Pre-Migration planning saves us from long downtimes and data loss. Companies using a systematic approach always plan ahead of time to prevent any data loss. They develop a disaster recovery plan to cope with such challenges.

Also, planning allows you to effectively manage your cloud resources to make everything run smoothly. While moving to AWS Cloud, companies need to adapt the processes of their cloud provider. Hence, this is also pre-planned for a smooth migration. 

10 Tips for Successful Cloud Migration

There are plenty of things to consider while migrating your business operations to a cloud but acting on these few tips can save you from all the chaos:

Develop a Migration Strategy: A migration strategy includes prioritizing and selecting all the processes for a smooth shift. It is crucial to have an executable plan for a successful migration.

Calculate Costs Beforehand: Managing resources effectively can help to reduce your costs significantly. Consider tools like  Migration Evaluator, Cloudamize, and CloudChomp to calculate everything while shifting to AWS cloud.

Prioritize Applications: Prioritization helps you migrate those applications that pose the lowest risk to your business.

Utilize Discovery Tools: AWS offers a range of discovery tools such as Migration Evaluator and Cloudamize. These tools can provide valuable insights on usage and dependencies. 

Fix Performance Issues: Optimize your current system and fix any performance issues that might cause any difficulties in a cloud environment.

Understand Application Architecture: Before migrating to the cloud, applications need to be examined for their components, dependencies, and integrations.

Consider User Experience: Always keep track of user experience before and after the migration to keep your customers happy.

Be Aware of Shared Responsibility: Both the cloud provider and customers share responsibility for the security of their cloud infrastructure.

Don’t fall for “Pilot Trap”: A pilot test is conducted with a certain number of users and meets expectations, but a sharp increase may result in a system overload once the system goes live.

Align Cloud with Business Outcomes: Cloud Infrastructure should fulfill your business goals by providing all the necessary resources for the best outcomes.

If you’re keen to prioritize and plan your migration road map, contact Caylent as a preferred AWS Partner to support you in a successful move to the cloud. Whether it’s expertise on identifying first-mover workloads or a complete platform re-architecture, we can help you get up and running fast with tools and self-service capabilities your development team will love.


Caylent provides a critical DevOps-as-a-Service function to high growth companies looking for expert support with Kubernetes, cloud security, cloud infrastructure, and CI/CD pipelines. Our managed and consulting services are a more cost-effective option than hiring in-house, and we scale as your team and company grow. Check out some of the use cases, learn how we work with clients, and read more about our DevOps-as-a-Service offering.