Gartner Research

Designing a Public Cloud Exit Strategy


Technical professionals responsible for cloud computing must prioritize risk mitigation as part of their cloud implementation. A carefully designed and regularly updated exit strategy for IaaS, PaaS and SaaS applications must be part of any cloud strategy.

Published: 25 April 2018

ID: G00355037

Analyst(s): Nik Simpson

Table Of Contents

Problem Statement

The Gartner Approach

The Guidance Framework

  • Prework
    • Create Triage Team for Cloud Events
    • Create Exit Plan Repository
    • Assess Exit Viability Based on Cloud Tier
    • Determine Viable Alternative Hosting Options
    • Set Rules to Determine If an Exit Plan Is Required
    • Define Unacceptable Conditions
  • Phase 1: Define High-Level Exit Strategy
    • Assess Application Dependencies
    • Identify Co-dependent Applications
    • Define Unacceptable Application-Level Events
    • Determine Appropriate Action for Each Event
    • Event Requires Exit From the Provider?
    • Evaluate and Select Alternative Providers
    • Prepare for Business Continuity
  • Phase 2: Build Application-Specific Exit Plans
    • Exit Plan Components
    • Estimate Time and Costs
    • Share the Exit Plan
  • Phase 3: Triage Events and Determine Whether to Leave Provider
    • Determine Event Acceptability
    • Determine Exit Viability
    • Document Exit Decision
  • Phase 4: Implement the Exit Plan
    • Select Exit Plan Option
    • Communicate With Stakeholders
    • Update Business Continuance and Disaster Recovery Plans
    • Implement the Exit Plan
    • Eradicate Cloud Remnants
    • Sever Provider Relationships
    • Create New Exit Plan and Document Lessons Learned
  • Follow-Up

Risks and Pitfalls

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