Modernization Goes Beyond Technology


By now, many of you are likely well aware of the end of support date for Windows Server 2003 (July 15th, 2015). After support ends, many organizations may fail to meet many industrywide compliance standards and regulations. This could result in lost business or an increase in the cost of doing business. The costs of maintaining legacy servers, can also add up quickly as maintenance costs for aging hardware will likely increase. Not modernizing will likely cost more in the end.

While end of support for Windows Server 2003 and SQL Server 2005 can have a dramatic impact on your business, it also represents an opportunity to modernize to more powerful, more capable technologies that support improved performance for you organization.

So how do you modernize to reduce risk to your business while improving your ability to deliver through new industry trends and customer expectations?

  • How do I deliver next-generation applications?
  • How do I enable modern work styles?
  • How do I increase the efficiency in my datacenter?
  • How do I embrace the cloud?
  • How do you get there?

To help answer these questions, mitigate the risks of end of support and to drive your organization to optimized infrastructure, Microsoft Services offers Enterprise Modernization.

Introducing Enterprise Modernization from Microsoft Services

Enterprise Modernization incorporates 4 stages that can stand alone or be combined into a larger comprehensive transformation.  For example, if you know your business and technical strategy for migration, the applications/servers you want to migrate and have a target platform already deployed, you can move directly to the Migrate stage without the need to discover and deploy a new environment.

Let’s take a closer look at the four stages of Enterprise Modernization:

Discover

During this phase, we examine both the business and IT objectives, determine a modernization strategy and outcome, understand service and support dependencies for efficient management and outline a migration plan and approach.  It is important to know your application and server landscape to build a comprehensive plan.  If you don’t already have a detailed view into your application and servers, we provide a rapid service to discover, rationalize and categorize your application portfolio. With this data, we can start building a migration plan that takes into account how you want to handle the migration of the applications, any associated dependencies and your migration timeline. Is cloud your primary target? Are there some applications that you would want to keep on-premises with Hyper-V or Windows Server 2012? Would these applications stay on-premises permanently? What are the constraints for the migration? Do you need a business case to present to your leadership to help justify these migration decisions?

Target and Deploy

The second stage consists of defining the target environment and deploying the appropriate infrastructure before migrating the target applications. These could be existing environments if you have the capacity, a new private cloud with Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V and System Center 2012 R2, or enabling hybrid cloud capabilities between your environment and Microsoft Azure or Microsoft Service Providers. This stage is designed to offer you the flexibility you need to build a solution that meets the needs of your business.

Migrate

The third stage is all about application migration. The migration can begin after we have defined the business strategy and goals, know your applications and have a target environment available. Microsoft Services offers great flexibility for migration options whether you want to migrate per server or per application. These migration options include the analysis, remediation and migration of custom line of business applications or services, Windows Server 2003 infrastructure roles and applications, and the lift and shift of 3rd party applications.

Support

One of the unique things about Microsoft Services is our commitment to on-going support after the migration is complete. Premier Support can help you establish recommended practices, troubleshoot issues, and fine tune procedures to help make sure applications and servers are achieving peak performance, IT staff are trained, and processes are in place to manage your new environment.

All that sounds great, right?  But, how do you ensure that all of those different activities get performed in unison, especially if there are different teams doing the work? Based on our experience migrating server and desktop applications, we have determined an overarching project management and oversight role is ideal for maintaining continuity between activities and teams. Whether it is your internal team, Microsoft Services or partners based on expertise, this role can help drive your migration project to success. How does a project management and oversight role work?

Project Management and Oversight

While this is not necessarily a phase of the overall project, it is a necessity for many initiatives of this scope. Proper governance is vital to the success of any project and its importance increases exponentially with a project’s complexity. Even for a small business, migrating to an updated infrastructure can involve a range of different applications across heterogeneous infrastructure technologies.

Microsoft Services’ Project Management and Oversight can manage modernizing and migrating your applications regardless of the delivery organization. Our project management professionals can help:

  • Identify Issues:  Identify and document project issues (current problems) and risks (potential events that impact the project)
  • Analyze & Prioritize:  Assess the impact and determine high priority risks and issues that will be actively managed
  • Plan & Schedule:  Decide how high-priority risks are to be managed and assign responsibility for risk management and issue resolution
  • Track & Report:  Monitor and report the status of risks and issues and communicate issue resolutions
  • Control:  Review the effectiveness of the risk and issue management actions

We want to help.  Microsoft Services is uniquely positioned to support your modernization initiative. We apply a leading-edge approach to helping enterprise IT organizations modernize legacy infrastructure and services. By providing a comprehensive, end-to-end set of services from strategy and planning through deployment and migration, we are able to accelerate the “time to value” and minimize the impact to the business.

Through a worldwide network of consultants, Microsoft Services has developed cloud-based dashboards with real-time learning and automation of application classification to minimize impact to IT staff. Finally, Microsoft Services has invested in advanced IP, industrialization principles, and a vast partner ecosystem to deliver business outcome oriented services while minimizing services costs.

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