Owen Pridden

Owen Pridden

Senior Technical Specialist

If there’s anything the world has learned recently, it’s how important it is to have an IT environment that is ready for remote working. Microsoft 365 is one of the natural first places to look, but migrating your IT infrastructure to a new platform can be a big task. Some of the core components to consider include email, file storage, security and access, and potentially other factors depending on the complexity of your current IT setup.

As migration specialists, we’ve seen it all, and worked with a wide range of customers on quite the variety of platforms to migrate to Microsoft 365. Below are just a few of the most common scenarios we encounter. Regardless of which scenario best describes your current IT infrastructure or the worries you have about migrating to the cloud, we’re here to help you on your journey.

On Premises

Having your infrastructure on physical servers in your offices used to be common practice and is a situation we find many organisations in. A common concern for not migrating sooner is due to the security that managing all of your infrastructure yourself can provide. Whilst that’s a valid perspective, the cloud is evolving with constant security updates and new ways to protect your organisation. Nowadays you have access to all, if not more, of the security capabilities you get with on-premises, without the costs and workload needed to update and maintain your servers.

The main issue businesses are reliant on is on-premises infrastructure are facing is the need for users to be able to access the resources they need from outside the office whilst keeping it secure; many will either heavily restrict or block remote access completely. Microsoft 365 is built with this in mind from the ground up by focusing on identity. Conditional Access, Device Compliance, Cloud App Security policies, and many other services can all be used to control how and when users are able to sign-in with the same level of security you’re familiar with (we recommend a Zero Trust approach to security, which you can learn more about here) For organisations who aren’t ready to fully migrate into the cloud, hybrid setups are a valid way to make the first step, by migrating workloads gradually whilst linking Microsoft 365 to your on-premises environment, and gradually decommissioning your servers when you’re ready.

Other Cloud Tech / Mixed Environment

Many organisations formed in recent years will most likely have started somewhere on the cloud, whether fully embracing it or partially relying on it, i.e. through hosted email or cloud storage. Similarly, an organisation may have migrated to one cloud solution to later find it doesn’t suit business needs. It isn’t always easy to get things right first time. Typical situations we encounter include:

  • Business needs have changed, and the current solution isn’t able to support these changes.
  • As the business has grown, the current solution isn’t suitable for the larger user base.
  • A wide range of 3rd-party solutions need to be consolidated, for costs or management reasons.

Whether some or all of these are applicable to you, Microsoft 365 is one of the best places you could look to migrate. We frequently see organisations who start by migrating out of necessity, and as they settle into working with Microsoft 365 and exploring more of the services such as the Power Platform, they quickly realise the “power” of the “platform” they’ve migrated to, and work with us to help make the most out of their services of interest.

M365 to M365

Many of the organisations we work with nowadays will already be using Microsoft 365 but will need to migrate into another tenant. Whether this is due to a merger, acquisition, or sale of a part of the business, moving between Microsoft 365 tenants is becoming more and more common.

One of the biggest concerns that organisations looking to migrate between tenants will face is the risk of email downtime. Microsoft currently only allow a vanity domain to exist in a single tenant at a time, which means it has to be removed from one tenant to be able to migrate it into the other. If this is something you’re worried about, we understand completely, and that’s where our expertise comes in. Our migrations between tenants are able to avoid the risk of downtime, and we can work with you to plan this in the best possible way to suit your migration needs.

Originally published June 22 2021, Updated June 22, 2021

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