Migrating your enterprise systems and workloads to the cloud may seem daunting, but beginning with a pilot project can help streamline the process and build confidence for more extensive migrations down the road.

You can use successful pilot projects to inform long-term migration strategies and identify any skills or partnership gaps that must be addressed.

The key is to start small with a simple use case that aligns with your reasons for adopting the cloud. Here are five pilot project ideas:

Pilot idea #1 – Migrate end-of-support workloads

A simple pilot project idea is to migrate an application that relies on end-of-support technologies. For example, if you have workloads running on Windows Server 2008 or SQL Server 2008, which recently reached end-of-life, moving these to the cloud can help you stay compliant and up to date.

The cloud makes leveraging the latest platforms easier and keeps your workloads going, even when you rely on old technology.

Pilot idea #2 – Migrate expiring data centre workloads

Another option is migrating workloads running in a data centre when the contract expires. This eliminates expensive data centre costs.

Identify the applications running in the data centre and use those as pilot candidates. Tools like Azure Migrate can map dependencies to help plan the migration.

Pilot idea #3 – Migrate simple, low-complexity apps

Applications that are low complexity and non-mission critical are also good pilot candidates because their simple nature makes the migration process smoother.

Use dependency analysis in Azure Migrate to identify workloads with minimal dependencies and move those apps to the cloud.

Pilot idea #4 – Enable remote work

Enabling remote work is a priority nowadays. Migrating desktops and apps to the cloud to support telecommuting is an impactful early win. Azure Virtual Desktop is a leading solution for delivering virtualised desktops from Azure.

You can benefit from increased productivity, reduced costs, and improved employee flexibility by enabling remote work.

Pilot idea #5 – Migrate dev and test environments

Finally, consider moving your dev and test environments to the cloud. Solutions like Azure Virtual Machines and Azure DevTest Labs provide efficient, lower-cost resources for development and testing.

Evaluate your options and choose the appropriate cloud service for your dev and test environments. Azure Virtual Machines and Azure DevTest Labs are popular choices. Consider scalability, cost, security, and integration with your existing tools.

Build confidence in the cloud for the long term

Moving to the cloud is not as difficult as it sounds, even with complex workloads. The key is to start small, learn, and build confidence.

By starting with a few quick wins, you can demonstrate the value of the cloud and gain momentum for large-scale migrations.

This approach allows you to learn from pilot projects, assess their success, and make necessary adjustments before moving forward with broader cloud adoption. For help and advise on moving to the cloud please contact us.