Simplified azure cloud adoption framework

architect's checklist for transforming on-premises to cloud | 2020-March-30

TL;DR - Keep the implementation practice simple and consistent

The Cloud Adoption Framework helps customers undertake a simplified cloud adoption journey. The framework contains detailed information about an end-to-end cloud adoption journey and is designed primarily for cloud architects and the cloud strategy teams leading cloud adoption efforts. This blog post primarily focus on step-by-step checklist that can help you complete your journey based on Microsoft azure cloud adoption framework recommended practices.

Image Source - Microsoft

Azure adoption checklist

  • Start strategy and plan - establishing clear business outcomes, a clearly defined digital estate plan, and well-understood adoption backlogs

    • Get critical business events e.g. data-center exit

    • Get cloud business motivation against each event e.g. Cost savings

    • Classify each motivation as migration or innovation e.g. Cost saving for migration or Increasing business agility for innovation

    • Define fiscal outcomes e.g. increased revenue, reduced cost or increased profit

    • Define agility outcomes e.g. faster time to market or low provision time

    • Define reach-ability outcomes e.g. global access or data sovereignty

    • Define customer engagement outcomes e.g. cycle time, see six sigma

    • Define performance outcomes e.g. Increase in number of transactions or capacity

    • Define reliability outcomes e.g. High uptime

    • Understand and explain the myths

      • The cloud is always cheaper

      • Everything should go into the cloud

      • Mirroring my on-premises environment will help me save money in the cloud

      • Server costs drive business cases for cloud migration

      • An operating expense model is better than a capital expense model

      • Moving to the cloud is like flipping a switch

    • Calculate revenue deltas

    • Calculate cost deltas e.g. operating cost reductions

    • Calculate gains Gains=RevenueDeltas+CostDeltasGains = Revenue Deltas + CostDeltas

    • Build a business justification ROI=(GainInvestment)/InvestmentROI = (Gain - Investment)/Investment

    • Transform account model i.e. cost center to profit center using charge back or showback or awareness-back models

    • Identify first adoption project

    • Inform business about depth of justification vs time to business impact

    • Inform business about depth of initial planning vs delayed technical decisions

    • Inform business about long-term operations vs time to adoption

    • Inform business about re-hosting vs re-architecture

    • Inform business about feature focus vs customer empathy

    • Inform business about well-governed vs speed/agility

    • Inform business about broad management investments vs no -ops /low ops

    • Inform business about centralized control vs delegated control

    • Document business outcome with respect to accountable department/person, measurable target, time frame and priority

    • Understand and explain the myths

      • It's easy to make rationalization decisions early in the process

      • Cloud adoption has to wait for all workloads to be rationalized

      • Business justification has to wait for all workloads to be rationalized

    • Articulate 5R's

      • Does the system require Re-hosting i.e. lift and shift

      • Does the system require Refactoring

      • Does the system require Re-architecture

      • Does the system require Rebuild

      • Does the system require Replacement

    • Identify digital asset planning approach Workload-driven, Asset-driven or Incremental approach

    • Rationalize the digital estate using incremental inventory, quantitative analysis i.e. streamline decisions or qualitative analysis i.e. temporary assumptions

    • Create a cloud adoption plan using Azure DevOps Demo Generator [TOOL]

    • Define workloads in cloud adoption plan

    • Priotise workloads in cloud adoption plan

    • Align assets to workloads

    • Review plan and create iteration and release path

    • Generate estimated timelines

    • Identify team capability gaps and concerns

    • Train staff via Microsoft Learn

    • Validate your findings using Data Migration Assistant and Azure Migrate [TOOL]

  • Start Readiness - ensure the readiness of staff through skills and learning plans.

    • Organise your resources in management groups, subscription, resource groups and resources

    • Tag resource for better metadata, documentation, automation and cost tracking

    • Define permission using Azure RBAC

    • For cost management and define limits, dev/test pricing or reserve instance to manage cost

    • Use the Governance Benchmark tool to identify potential gaps in your organization's cloud governance approach [TOOL]

    • Use Azure blueprints to define templates for role, policy, arm, resource groups

    • Define compliance policy

    • Define plan to Monitoring and Reporting

      • Utilise Azure monitor to measure infrastructure performance

      • Utilise service health for status and uptime

      • Utilise Azure advisor for recommendation for availability, security, performance, cost and operational excellence

      • Utilise Azure Security Center to monitor and create a secure infrastructure

    • Finalise you IAC tool

    • Define different landing zone as shared services, hub and spoke model, or independent zones

    • Deploy first landing zone. See example

    • Monitor and review compute options

    • Monitor and review networking options

    • Monitor and review storage options

    • Monitor and review data options

    • Monitor and review RBAC

  • Start Adoption - Ensure proper implementation of desired changes, across IT and business processes, to achieve business outcomes.

    • Start Migration - Iterative execution of the cloud implementation methodology adhering to the tested process of Assess, Migrate, Optimize, and Secure & Manage to create a repeatable process for migrating workloads.

      • Utilise Azure Migrate to confirm the migration suitability of on-premises assets, performance-based sizing and cost estimates for running on-premises assets in Azure

      • Review incremental rationalisation by power of 10 methodology

      • Review all 5R's

      • Inform all stakeholders

      • Validate consistency of documentation and implementation

      • Perform migration using [TOOLS]

        • Azure Migrate

        • Azure Site Recovery

        • Azure Database Migration Service

        • Data Migration Assistant

        • SQL Server Migration Assistant

        • Database Experimentation Assistant

        • Cosmos DB Data Migration Tool

        • UnifyCloud

        • Cloudamize

        • Zerto

        • Carbonite

        • Movere

        • Cosmos DB Partners

        • Azure DevOps

        • Microsoft Planner

        • Microsoft Project

        • Microsoft Team

      • Monitor and Test

      • Obtain assistance if required via Microsoft support

      • Validate and compare your scenario against sample scenarios

      • Validate for business continuity best practices

      • Monitor and continuously improve migration process by defining assessment criteria

      • Migrate using promoting, remediating, replicating or staging workloads for multiple environments

      • Define and execute business promotion and retrospective activities

      • Create environement of continuous learning and up skilling

    • Start Innovation - Drive business value through innovation activities that unlock new technical skills and expanded business capabilities.

  • Start Operating

    • Define governing body. Align corporate policy to tangible risks, mitigated through policy, process, and cloud-based governance tooling.

    • Define management team. Expand IT operations to ensure cloud-based solutions can be operated through secure, cost effective processes using modern, cloud-first operations tools.

      • Define Process, tools and purpose for

        • Inventory and visibility

        • Operational compliance

        • Protect and recover

      • Define plan and tools for monitoring and alerting

      • Create specialisation for platforms or workloads

      • Establish an operational fitness review

      • Define resiliency checklist for specific Azure services

      • Define plan for failure mode analysis for Azure applications

      • Create a disaster recovery plan and process for

        • Informing stakeholders

        • Data recovery

        • Business continuity

        • RPO

        • RTO

    • Define support team. Align people and teams to deliver proper cloud operations and adoption.

      • Define RACI matrix

      • Create cloud capability matrix

      • Build technical skills

Additional tools that you might have to review for a successful cloud adoption