Part two from a four-part series on taming cloud complexity, with Forrester
Part one of our conversations with Forrester, Taming the Complexity of Cloud Operations, focused on ways to optimize cloud operations to deploy apps faster, at scale. In part two of the four-part series, the focus is on controlling costs, something few would have imagined would become such a pervasive problem. And how using a FinOps based approach can help companies understand and maximize ROI of their cloud investment.While the challenge of getting the most out of IT spend didn’t start with cloud, the degree of difficulty is especially unique. Despite line-by-line billing and transparency from service providers, costs are not straightforward. Forrester Principal Analyst Tracy Woo notes, “AWS alone has 200+ products, and releases 500 new features or services every quarter, and they can bill in any number of ways.” And that is just one provider; the sheer volume of choices makes cost management unthinkably complex.
Fast, easy, and cheap: you can’t always have it all
Anyone who’s ever taken a basic business course knows you can rarely get anything that meets these three competing criteria. But when it comes to the cloud, you can find the right balance against your goals using the right methodologies. Forrester’s Woo says, “we advise clients to employ both a top-down, and bottom-up, approach, to get buy-in at every level.” This encompasses everyone from executive leadership to IT developers, admins, architects and engineers on the frontlines of cloud services. Forrester recommends a number of strategies to deliver rapid results, such as eliminating waste through simple tactics like scheduling and turning-off resources during periods of low-demand or off-hours.
Ensure visibility of consumption from the start
According to KP Hari, VP of Digital Modernization, Hitachi Vantara, one of the most pervasive issues businesses struggle with is clear visibility into consumption across all cloud resources. Something that needs to be addressed from the start, not as an afterthought. “You cannot fix what you cannot see,” he says.Hari adds that monitoring and factoring visibility into cost across all your clouds, and using those insights to shape workload design, is just the start. “Once we’re able to look at where consumption is happening today,” he says, “we can see how that provides a leading view of what costs should be in future, and then align it to business objectives.”
Encourage a cloud cultural mindset
Beyond any specific strategic or tactical process, one of the most important things an organization can do to control costs is to make sure it is ingrained in a cloud cultural mindset. That can be done in many ways, including buy-in, training, and keeping everyone informed of best practices and progress. You can hear more in the complete conversation, Optimizing Cloud Economics and Scale, featuring Hari, Woo, and Hitachi Vantara’s Samta Bansal, who adds, “mindset is integral to everything. But it doesn’t come easy, so rewarding these activities to push this cultural change is also essential to success.”
Taming the Complexity of Cloud Operations
A four-part webinar discussion series with Forrester
Episode 2: Optimizing Cloud Economics and Scale, featuring:
Be sure to catch the other episodes in the series:
Episode 1: What’s In and What’s Out? Optimize Your Hybrid and Distributed Cloud Environments.
Episode 3: Design Your Workloads for Reliability and Cost
Episode 4: Redefining CloudOps – Breaking Down the Walls Between DevSecOps and SRE
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