Turn Legacy Applications into Business Assets

Covid-19 has dramatically altered the way we work, with companies across the globe re-thinking cloud migration, to turn data into insight and support agile operations in a rapidly evolving business landscape.

The author of this page: Roisin McLaughlin
Roisin McLaughlin, Marketing Director Sep 25, 2020

As Covid-19 hit pause on our day to day lives, organisations around the globe found themselves confronted by the limitations of traditional IT architecture. Digital native organisations and early cloud adopters have fared well, with cloud-flexibility and agility allowing them to quickly adapt to the new business landscape, one where remote working and online consumer engagement dominate.

More conventional organisations, felt the impact more acutely as finite legacy systems struggled under the spikes in usage and created bottlenecks in the deployment of new online customer service solutions. This clear divide has re-enforced the business case for cloud services, leading to mass migration from tradition IT architecture to cloud-based platforms.

A move to the cloud, while advisable, should be approached with an understanding of its limitations and business implications. Older legacy applications that often form the cornerstone of day to day operations will need to be modernised to operate in this new cloud environment, and infrastructure should be reconfigured to meet the current and future needs of the business. Although application migration strategies vary greatly depending on your unique business priorities. Not all applications will warrant the investment of developing a cloud-native application model and in many cases, a phased or incremental approach may best serve your unique business requirements.

To help you identify the right approach for your existing applications we take a look at three common application migration approaches in Azure;

Cloud Intrastructure-Ready Apps

A simple "Lift & Shift" approach, you simply rehost or move your current on-premise applications to and infrastructure as a service (IaaS) platform. Apps retain the same composition as before but they can now be deployed to Virtual Machines (VMs) in the cloud, with no re-architecting or new code development required. While this approach represents the least effort it delivers smaller cloud value, other than shifting operating expense or closing datacentres.

Cloud DevOps Ready Apps

After an initial "Lift & Shift", gain additional benefits without significantly re-architecting or altering code by running by redefining DevOps processes and running your applications with modern cloud technologies like containers or through other cloud managed services. Containers remove the friction caused by application dependencies when you deeply in multiple stages and can be deployed on Platform as a Service (PaaS) or IaaS to databases, monitoring, cache as a service and continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD) pipelines. Additionally, the use of containers improves agility and portability of apps and dependencies.

Cloud-Optimised / Cloud-Native Apps

Typically driven by business need, this approach targets the modernisation of mission-critical applications. PaaS services are used to move your applications to PaaS computing platforms. While this approach often requires the re-writing of code, resulting in increased time and budget required it allows you to gain benefits that are difficult to achieve with legacy applications including optimisation for scale, agility. In addition cloud native applications benefits from built-in security services and unique intelligence designed to help quickly protect your workloads.
For IT personnel in most sizeable organizations, the case for moving to the cloud is a familiar one, and many companies are already using it in narrow, isolated cases. But there’s much more to be gained from a comprehensive commitment to cloud, including greater speed and agility, cost optimisation, and the resiliency to weather the harshest storms. These are the big-picture strategic advantages that deliver competitive advantage and help businesses navigate unforeseen market challenges.

Are you looking to optimise your cloud environment and create a roadmap for future growth? Our Azure team can help you transform your operations to become more agile and efficient.

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