12 Things Every Business Owner Should Know Before Shifting to the Cloud

Cloud Computing and Nature Concept

What’s one thing to know when shifting your business to the cloud, and why is this important?

These answers are provided by Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. YEC has also launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

1. Test Your Custom Functionalities First 

Duran Inci

All servers are different and can sometimes recognize custom code differently. If you have any custom functionalities on your current site, be sure to test them on the new server prior to making the transfer and going live. Testing is important, not only to ensure that the custom functionalities work but also to make sure nothing else broke along the way. – Duran InciOptimum7

2. Understand Your Solution’s Security Features and VulnerabilitiesSerenity Gibbons

Know the security features that are involved with using the cloud as well as the vulnerabilities. This way, you can better prepare how you look at and use the cloud, rather than just assuming everything is completely safe.  – Serenity GibbonsCalendar

3. Organize for ScalabilityDerek Broman

One mistake some business owners make is not having a structured cloud-based filing system. Transferring everything to the cloud certainly makes it more accessible, but if it isn’t organized, you will have a mess on your hands! – Derek BromanDiscount Enterprises LLC deguns.net

4. Have a Dedicated Internal Staff Member for the TransitionNicole Munoz

It’s important to assign a dedicated developer to oversee the entire process. This is crucial for a few reasons, but the most important is to keep accountability and oversight as a key function of the transition. – Nicole MunozStart Ranking Now

5. Have a TimelineZach Binder

Create a timeline and follow it so you can stay organized and on target to make your changes. This will ensure that your business is not disrupted and it doesn’t impact your customers for longer than necessary. – Zach BinderBell + Ivy

6. Investigate Your Solution’s AP

IDiego OrjuelaIf you are looking to move your business to the cloud, you need to become intimately familiar with APIs. Cloud solutions work best when they are integrated with other tools, and you can benefit from the best tools in each product category instead of relying on one that does it all. Make sure that the tools you choose have open APIs that are well documented and play well with others. – Diego OrjuelaCables & Sensors

7. Make Sure Your Software is Mobile-Friendly

Syed BalkhiThe workforce of today is creating a greater demand for mobile-friendly cloud software. As more top performers require greater flexibility in terms of remote work, being able to take work with you on the go will be a differentiator in attracting the best talent for your organization. – Syed BalkhiOptinMonster

8. Create Back-Up Datakate Hancock

When migrating your important business information from one software to another, it’s best to always create duplicate data, just in case something goes wrong during the process. Once you’ve successfully transferred everything to the cloud, your information is pretty much secure. – Kate HancockOC Facial Care Center

9. Have a Clear Strategy and Reason for the ShiftDerek Robinson

Some companies struggle when shifting to the cloud, and one of the most common problems is the absence of a clearly defined strategy. The objective of your business should help determine your cloud strategy, which might end up being rather complex. There are various reasons behind businesses shifting to the cloud, some of which include cost, flexibility, performance and agility. – Derek RobinsonTop Notch Dezigns

10. Research Your Solution’s Performance IssuesThomas Smale

When you move your business to the cloud, you become completely dependent on your service provider for uptime. If their services go down for any reason, you are subject to the same downtime. Do your research. Ask for data on how many service outages your provider has had in the past, how long they have lasted and what systems they have put in place to stop it happening in the future. – Thomas SmaleFE International 

11. Take the Opportunity to Pare Down and OrganizeRyan Bradley

All businesses save too much data, whether in the form or paper or digital. Converting to the cloud is the perfect time to comb through some of that data lurking in the back corners of your business’s computers and determine whether or not it is even needed. Even though storage in the cloud is inexpensive, it should not be a license to hoard useless data. – Ryan BradleyKoester & Bradley, LLP

12. Be PatientCodie Sanchez

Having a cloud-based business has the potential to be profitable. Transferring documents onto another platform is a slow, methodical and sometimes painstaking process. The end result is worth the shift. Your business will operate more efficiently and your team will be able to access documents from their mobile device, providing the flexibility to address issues and concerns quickly. – Codie Sanchezwww.CodieSanchez.com

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The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.