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Transition to Atlassian Cloud in 10 Steps

By Elizabeth Clor

More than 200,000 customers — including 83% of Fortune 500 companies — use Atlassian tools to collaborate on projects, manage IT requests, and apply agile principles to their work at scale. However, every server or data center Atlassian user risks losing access to their software if they don’t migrate their tools and data to Atlassian Cloud by the February 2024 deadline.

Planning a cloud migration today won't just help organizations meet the upcoming deadline: Transitioning as early as possible allows users to leverage platform capabilities that are exclusively on Atlassian Cloud. For instance, native roadmaps in Jira help teams understand project and task dependencies. Automation features within Jira Service Management enable effective communication between agents and customers. And advanced search capabilities in Confluence make asynchronous work easier.

To begin the transition to Atlassian Cloud, IT teams can use the following workback timeline, complete with step-by-step instructions for an effective and easy transition.

ITSM Migration Featured Image

Step 1 | Run Atlassian Migration Assistant

Begin by launching Atlassian’s Cloud Migration Assistant app, which comes with each Atlassian application, including Bitbucket, Jira, and Confluence. By plugging user information into the app, users receive an estimated migration timeline, which can vary from months to a year depending on an organization’s size and how much data they need to transition.

The Cloud Migration Assistant will also flag potential hiccups: A company may have an application installed in a data center, but have yet to start a subscription in the cloud. The system will also identify any account that has a duplicate email address, which would halt the migration process down the line. 

Step 2 | Launch Atlassian Cloud Trial

After running the Cloud Migration Assistant, users will be prompted to share a URL to their cloud site, such as “Contegix.atlassian.net.” Reserving a cloud domain is a necessary next step for the Cloud Migration Assistant to complete, and it kicks off a 30-day trial that can be extended up to 90 days, before organizations will need to begin paying for their subscription.

Step 3 | Assess Installed Marketplace Apps

Next, users should evaluate their current marketplace apps to discover any gaps or installed programs that are no longer necessary to their business. Some apps, for instance, aren’t available in the cloud at all, or have key differences that need to be addressed during the migration.

Scriptrunner, an automation and customization app, functions differently on-prem than it does on the cloud, requiring users to make coding changes and modifications after the transition. And Zephyr Scale, a performance test management app for Jira, may be replaced by other solutions, like TestRail, which serves the same function but doesn't require manual intervention to move data and recreate functionality.

Step 4 | Identify Archivable Data

Next, users should evaluate which data needs to be migrated from their current solutions to the cloud. At some companies that have used Jira for over 10 years, only 20% of the data on the platform has been accessed in the past two years due to new business needs or workforce changes. Archiving old, unnecessary data results in a shorter timeline to transition. Plus, Jira and other Atlassian solutions operate faster with less information to index through.

Step 5 | Evaluate Current Custom Fields

As organizations grow and business needs change, it’s common for companies’ workflows and custom fields to become outdated. Identifying these active, but unnecessary fields and archiving superfluous workflows and schemes helps organizations with operational efficiency and system performance. Leading pest control provider, Terminix, for example, worked with Contegix to simplify their workflows, going from 350 fields and screen types down to 50 during their migration to cloud. As a result, their tools became lighter and easier to navigate.

Step 6 | Determine Migration Strategy

Now, IT teams can make a decision about the best way to migrate their organization’s tools — whether all at once as a “big bang” migration or through a phased approach, which takes longer and requires system downtime. To make an informed decision, Atlassian system administrators can run the Cloud Migration Assistant app once more for an accurate estimated time to migrate. 

At Contegix, we consider anything more than 4 hours to be significant downtime, which will require IT leaders to coordinate with other department heads to find a schedule that works for the whole organization, whether migrating data over the weekend, when some businesses are closed, or in small increments.

Step 7 | Mitigating Disparity Between Data Center and Cloud

With a migration plan in place, users should mitigate risks for plug-ins and add-ons that will be migrated. For instance, if any duplicate emails were flagged at the initial Cloud Migration Assistant check, users should delete duplicate email addresses and usernames at this stage.

For identified applications such as ScriptRunner or GeoSuite, where certain macros and post functions are not available in the cloud, users can begin making modifications to the source system with alternative solutions to mitigate disparity between data center and cloud or server and cloud on-prem. Working with an Atlassian Platinum Solutions Partner at this stage can help: Biotech company PacBio enlisted support from Contegix to manage the transfer of application data and optimize plug-in functionality for overall improved system performance.

Step 8 | Share Your Migration Plan With Your Team

Next, IT leaders should communicate their migration plan to all Atlassian users across the business, which can range from software development, to marketing, and HR teams. Doing so before the migration helps departments understand how the transition will impact their day-to-day work in the short term, and any long-term changes they should be aware of in the new environment.

Step 9 | Test the Cloud Migration

Although some aspects will be tested while IT teams make system changes, when all modifications are complete, it’s time to run User Accepted Testing (UAT). This test determines whether earlier changes fulfill the needs they were meant to serve.  

In practice, this test requires a sample of users across the business, representing all the different teams that will access the system to test the solution in a sandbox on the cloud site. Users should confirm whether the new configuration will meet their needs when the team transfers over and begins operating in the new environment.

Step 10 | Run the Go Live

Finally, it’s time to launch the migration. At this stage, migration leads should keep stakeholders, including users and administrators, updated on the status of the transfer process. Once complete, it’s important for team leads to provide training support for all users, so users can maximize their tools and work effectively in their new environment.


Why Work with an Atlassian Partner During a Cloud Migration?

  1. An Atlassian Platinum Solutions Provider like Contegix can project manage the migration to help organizations stay on top of their deadlines during the process.
  2. Our team has guided dozens of companies through migrations in recent years, and we can help teams avoid common roadblocks and issues.
  3. If system issues do arise, Contegix can provide organizations with custom tailored solutions that meet their businesses’ needs.

Don’t Wait to Migrate to Atlassian Cloud

Being on Atlassian Cloud enables organizations to get more from their Atlassian tools, with intuitive interfaces, exclusive app features, automated security and protection processes and more. And with the deadline fast approaching, organizations don’t have time to waste: Atlassian has provided no indication that support for on-prem solutions will continue following February 2024.

By following these steps to transition, and working with an Atlassian Platinum Solutions Provider like Contegix, organizations can maximize their tools, meet their deadlines, and thrive in the new environment.

Learn more tips for navigating a migration to Atlassian cloud by watching our webinar.