Why you need to start planning your cloud migration NOW (and what pitfalls to avoid)

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Feb 28, 2023

"Why you need to start planning your cloud migration NOW (and what pitfalls to avoid)." Find out on this episode of Appfire Presents: The BEST Work Management Show by Appfire. Paul Renshaw joins Emily Peet-Lukes to discuss why it is important that you start planning your cloud migration right now and what are some of the things to avoid in the process. Including a seven-step process that will help to prevent migration pitfalls.

Watch the recording of our recent webinar where we take a more in-depth look into Atlassian migration preparation with Appfire partner Eficode.

About the guest

Paul Renshaw is Chief Revenue Officer of Clearvision (now part of the Eficode Group). Paul loves solving problems, technology, financial history, music, and football. He is originally from Manchester (well, Stockport really). He has been in the Atlassian space for over 10 years and knows a thing or two about the toolset.

About the show

The BEST Work Management Show by Appfire features smart leaders sharing their secrets for optimizing business processes and increasing productivity. Get the goods on how they handle everything from setting up workflows to automating processes. Every episode is 10 minutes or less, packed with insights you can use right away to supercharge your team’s productivity.


For your convenience, here is the transcript of this episode:

Why you need to start planning your cloud migration NOW (and what pitfalls to avoid)

Emily:  Today we have Paul Renshaw joining us on the show to discuss why it is important that you start planning your Cloud migration right now and some of the things to avoid in the process. Stick around, we’ll be right back with 10 minutes of valuable info you won’t want to miss.

Hello, Paul. Thank you for joining us today. 

Paul:  Hello.

Emily:  You’re the chief revenue officer of Clearvision, which is now part of the Eficode Group. Is that correct?

Paul:  That is correct. I’ve just about started my 12th year in the ecosystem. I’ve been the CRO at Clearvision for the last five or six years. I’m currently an unnamed but very much a senior part of the sales organization at Eficode. I’m really excited about what the future holds for us all.

Emily:  That’s great. We’re so happy to have you on the show. We are here to talk about migrations. Specifically, to discuss why organizations should not put off planning their migrations. I hear you have some pretty cool insights for us, so let’s dive in. Shall we?

Paul:  Yes, please.

Emily:  Let’s start off with why the urgency on migrating, why now when, especially with Atlassian, it’s a year in the future that all that stuff is going to be end-of-life?

Paul:  Exactly. A year, obviously, is a very short amount of time in business. We’re always planning years ahead. There’s technically 12 months to go, there’s 51 weeks to go. I think what I want to get across today is some no-nonsense information around it, where we’ve had some experience, what customers can do themselves, where they might need some help. 

In terms of the urgency, it’s definitely related to the time period. It takes time to plan.

Let’s start with a few facts. Anybody who starts their journey with Atlassian on Atlassian Cloud, technically or statistically 90% of the customers then recommend it to colleagues. We’re sort of dealing with two worlds at the moment. There are the historic Atlassian customers who have been there for at least 10 years and this feels like a big jump. Then there are the new customers that are just starting in a new world that feels nice and easy.

A few things that are worth considering, just from a factual perspective. If you do end up staying on Server post-Server-end-of-life in February 2024, you’re going to be on outdated software versions with less innovation. Simple as that. You’re going to see increased costs and security risks. Particularly if you’re in any sort of regulated industry, you must be on the latest patch and use the latest security. So, do take that into account.

We all have heard the stories, and we know the value you get when you move to SaaS products in terms of productivity, and the stats that sit behind that are enormous. 95% of new Atlassian customers start on the Cloud as well. So, it’s really about entering this new world.

Emily:  It’s a new era. It’s kind of like if you don’t get on board, the bus is leaving. You can get there, but it’s not going to be as efficient. 

Paul:  Exactly. We’re also very aware, Pareto’s Law lives in all our lives, 80/20. Most customers, the Cloud is really suitable. For the very heavily regulated industries, there’s always that behind-the-firewall option. Just understand security and regulatory wise if the Cloud is okay. If it is, then this is some of the advice that is going to be really relevant for you, which I anticipate to be at least 80% of the audience watching today.

Emily:  That’s great. Let’s move on. You have a couple of key offers for us. 

Paul:  Yes. It’s really worth understanding Atlassian have had a number of offers over the years, we’re into the last year’s worth of offers, so these are quite specific. 

If you are looking to migrate 1,001 users to a new Atlassian Cloud, there’s 20% off the Cloud subscription, 20% off in terms of dollars. That is also true for multiyear deals, so if you sign a two-year, three-year, or a one-year, you get 20% off each year. If you’re going to make that move to take advantage of that offer, that ends June 30th this year. You have three-and-a-half months to go. That’s the first one. That obviously is aimed at larger customers, 1,001.

There is also another incentive for smaller customers. If you have 201 users of the core products, Jira, Confluence, etcetera, or 51 agents in Jira Service Management, there’s something called step up credits. Basically, what it means is any unused maintenance, you get that amount of dollars off the next subscription for Cloud. 

So, there are two offers available depending on the size of your organization. The step up credits goes right up until February 2024 and the 20% off offer is until the end of June 2023. Work out which bracket you’re in and therefore which offer is best for you.

Emily:  That’s great. It also adds a little bit to the urgency. Figure out where your plan fits and sign up, because sign up offers end soon. Before you know it, it’s already getting close to Q4.

Paul:  Exactly. I’m quite no-nonsense in the way I go about things, so I’m going to blind you with technical jargon.

Emily:  We want to hear those great facts.

Paul:  Exactly. Let me go over some of the really simple things that I’ve picked up from experience these last few years, and let’s just be real about it.

If you’re in that 100 users bracket of customer, you can very likely do it yourself. There’s a number of Atlassian tools to help you do it. Just get it done. Staying behind the firewall at 100 users is very likely not cost effective, particularly from regulated industries. Use all of the material that is online, and very likely your Jira admin is going to be capable of doing it. If they’re not, of course, use a partner like Eficode. 

Jira Service Management, if you’re using that on-prem, the Cloud version of it is just amazing. It’s basically a new product. Use this opportunity of the Cloud initiative to investigate that. 

Again, this is very real, so I’m going to tell you how it is. We have 12 months to go. There are only so many experts with the skill of taking larger (200+) customers on a migration path. The nature of migrating tools is a skill, it’s something you pick up with experience. You can’t expert a partner who has never done it before to just suddenly on January 2024 be able to do a good job. Being aware that the demand shock will happen in the industry, particularly in the next six months.

Emily:  Right. That makes sense. 

Paul:  If you own this baby and this problem in your business, you be the person that comes to find that resolution. That’s my advice. Otherwise, quite clearly you’re going to pay more, it’s demand and supply.

Look for the experienced partners that have done it before. Ask a partner to recommend a customer who has done it before. Look at the approach they use. This isn’t about cut and paste data from one thing to another, it really isn’t. It’s about looking at ways of working and taking advantage of the new features. 

Take advantage of the time you have. You have got time at the minute. Use this next quarter to evaluate what you want to get out of this, get the business leaders bought into this. This is not a procurement approach. It just isn’t. Don’t let procurement drive something because you’re not comparing apples and apples, you’re comparing apples and pears. Some of these Cloud migrations can take time. It’s your responsibility as a business leader to solve those problems. 

We have something we’ll put a link for, which is our Cloud Migration Hub. We’ve tried to put as much information out there for customers that fits all different categories ready to go. Now, thinking about it, or nearly there, there will be something in there that’s relevant for the people watching.

Emily:  Amazing. It’s so great to have a resource where you can just grab all the info you need. To be honest, I think that’s the biggest thing for people, the demand shock. If you wait, you’re going to be hit with that demand shock where you’re scrambling to find someone that can help you, and you’re going to have to compromise. You don’t want to have to do that.

Paul:  Exactly.

Emily:  Let’s move on. You have a cool offering to talk to us about, the t-shirt sizes.

Paul:  A always, when you talk to someone who is really technical they’ll be like it could be anything, it could be this long, it could be that long. I want to try to simplify it for people. 

If you’re what we consider a small t-shirt size, which means you’re moving two products, maybe Jira and Confluence, it’s a couple of hundred users, you only have a couple of critical apps in there, you can get that done in about 15 days. Just to give you expectations. 

Then when it comes to the medium t-shirt size, 15 to 25. You maybe have three products, you’re maybe looking at merging a couple of instances of Jira into one, a few more of those business critical apps, those more challenging ones, the testing apps and that type of thing. That’s the type of range you should be looking at.

When you sit outside of that, it is very much a unique approach that is needed for your business. Work with someone that’s experienced that can do risk assessments before you even start the project.

Emily:  That’s awesome. It’s kind of a way to help you strategize. If you fit into a certain size, then you have these strategies available. That makes a lot of sense.

Paul:  Absolutely.

Emily:  Awesome. Our last thing to go over is you have this awesome seven step approach. Let’s talk about that.

Paul:  Let’s share it. This is something we’ve built up at Clearvision and Eficode over the years, but it’s also something that I think is good advice for anybody, which is why I want to share it.

Do an initial assessment. Assess from the business perspective what you’re looking to do and from an assessment of what you think the challenges are today. We do that remotely for a couple of hours together. 

Then there’s a thing called a risk assessment. As it says, what is the risk to your business? Technically, business uptime, all of that stuff, do that. That’s something we do, but you can do it yourself. At the output of the risk assessment, look at it, what does it say, where do you need to concentrate. 

Then we go through the process of scheduling time. This is worth noting. If someone says to you it’s going to take 20 days, that’s not a business month. A migration could easily take 60 working days to do 20 days worth of work, so don’t think it happens in a month. 

Of course, do a test migration. Don’t just go for live, please, particularly in larger organizations. UAT, user acceptance testing, is really important. Get the users to tell you what has gone wrong. Then you do your live migration. Often this is out of hours for many businesses, that’s what we do. All about that go live support, wrap people around it for those first few weeks particularly, otherwise you’ll be inundated with things that just aren’t perfect.

Emily:  I think a lot of people don’t realize the testing phases are really important. You can’t just throw something out there. You have to be able to test things.

Paul:  Yes. Build that into your schedule every time.

Emily:  Right. Also, build in more time than you think you’re going to need, for sure. 

Paul:  Definitely.

Emily:  Paul, this has been awesome. Thank you so much for being here today with us to talk about the importance of starting your migration right now. Good news, we will be diving into this even more. We have a webinar on Tuesday, March 7th at 11:00 AM EST. You can find the sign up link in the show notes. On top of that, there will be a session at the Atlassian team about migrations, so be on the lookout for more info about that.

Thanks for joining. It’s been great talking to you. We’ve had a great episode of The Best Work Management Show by Appfire. We’ll see you next time.

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