A full copy of the report is available here (subscription required). Read on below to learn more about updates to the 2021 guide and how Gartner sees this market evolving in the coming years.
How has the market changed since the 2019 report?
If the cloud office wasn’t mainstream in 2019, it sure is now. Adoption of Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace are at all time highs, propelled by more confidence in the benefits of the cloud, ongoing security threats for older on-prem systems, and the urgency to support a remote workforce past 2020.
One of the biggest shifts – and it should come as no surprise to our seasoned migration partners – is the prevalence of cloud-to-cloud migrations. In 2019, there was almost a pessimistic tone to the report as analysts saw the potential for the market to slow with many organizations already completing the move from on-premises infrastructure to the cloud.
But as more organizations adopted the cloud, the need to migrate users and data between tenants became more and more in demand. Merger and acquisition activity is the main driver here, along with organizations like universities deciding to consolidate or reorganize their own environments.
In addition, many organizations still elect to move between cloud office providers entirely, fueling a market that was previously thought to be a “you only move once” endeavor.
The other big shift is the rise of support for collaboration applications like Microsoft Teams. As cross-tenant migrations have increased in frequency alongside adoption rates of Teams, it is now a critical workload to incorporate into scoping and planning. This wasn’t the case in 2019 and vendors have responded differently to this use case – some like BitTitan have shipped many features over the last 18 months to support this use case, while others have stuck to their core workloads, be it email or file migrations. Seeing as there are no native tools to support this scenario, it’s even more important we support this use case for our customers.
The final difference highlighted by Gartner is one specifically true to BitTitan – the ability for vendors who previously specialized in a single workload (like mail) towards other scenarios. Seeing demand for a simpler alternative to complex SharePoint migration offerings, we rebuilt connectors for many of our file migration scenarios in 2020 to help move files between tenants, as one example, while also adding support for other endpoints like Google Shared Drive.
What’s changed on the tooling front?
When it comes to tooling, Gartner has this advice: understand the requirements for your specific scenario and pick the tool that aligns best with that criteria.
It’s a crowded market out there, from specialized tools for single workloads to deeper solutions like BitTitan powering all kinds of workloads. Not to mention free but limited first-party offerings from Microsoft and Google themselves. These tools are priced differently, deployed differently, and supported differently.
When selecting a solution, Gartner recommends having candid conversations with different vendors to understand their capabilities and approach to see if it’s the right fit. This could also include proof-of-concept testing or other pre-migration steps to help gauge throughput and fidelity of a certain tool. Be sure to ask about hidden or add-on costs, too – from professional service fees to additional data center spend from processing a migration through an on-prem tool, the license cost isn’t always the full story.
It’s worth noting BitTitan just released a series of new migration assessments through our Voleer platform to help our customers accurately scope and plan for migration projects. This comes in handy for partners putting together migration frameworks for their end users, or even internal IT teams preparing to migrate themselves. Best of all, these assessments are free to run as part of the 30-day trial with Voleer.