At communikate et al our work revolves around what we produce in digital files – clever words, complex strategies, beautiful design. Our team is spread across the country, we travel, and we often work from home or anywhere else we choose. So file access that’s easy, collaborative and reliable regardless of our location is vital.
It’s why moving our files “to the cloud” became a priority business project for us.
Like most large IT projects, this one took us down a few rabbit holes.
I don’t profess to be a cloud expert (thank goodness for our savvy IT partners who guided us through) but as an IT amateur who navigated some of the big wide cloud, I wanted to share some of the basics I learnt, for anyone looking to do the same…
Narrow down your options early in the project by considering:
Demo videos and feature-limited trials are useful, but there’s nothing like using a product in real-time. If possible, involve a selection of team members who will eventually be the end users.
Our trial involved staff from our consulting, design and operations teams working on active files, and their feedback was invaluable.
The benefits included:
Cloud platforms have a variety of features and give you freedom for set-up and structure. Think carefully about how to set it up for your business.
See the opportunity to change not just the environment you work in, but how you work. Take the time to rethink:
Carefully prepare your team for any downtime or workarounds during migration, and organise extensive training so they feel supported, engaged and can quickly maximise the benefits and efficiencies you’ve been working so hard to achieve.
No matter how feature-packed your chosen platform is or how much planning you do, your cloud experience will only be as good as your internet performance.
Depending on how you’re currently working, your business will probably experience a significant increase in data and bandwidth consumption when you move to the cloud.
Our trial revealed that our current internet would not be sufficient (especially for our large design files) so we upgraded to fibre. Which leads me to my next point…
As per any major project, be prepared for unexpected curve-balls. For us these included:
In light of this we re-prioritised our projects and migrated our emails and calendar before our files – a smaller job that could be done successfully using the internet connection we had.
It was important for us to have the patience and flexibility to deal with surprises and know there was a bigger reward at the end.
Engage experts who know your business and know the platform you’re moving to. Treat them as an extension of your team to help you with: