Fresh from cloud transformation initiatives or DX expansion efforts, some organizations may need the following strategies to keep costs grounded.
As companies migrate to the cloud and expand their repertory of cloud services, many are beginning to suffer sticker shock.
Although companies benefit from the Cloud, other considerations such as internet security, identity management, IT management, maintenance and data migration can add to the bill.
As one expert in cloud platforms knows only too well: Geeman Yip, CEO, BitTitan says it is critical to have a cloud-cost optimization strategy in place to prioritize costs and bring all aspects of cloud computing together.
Here are five ways/strategies Yip recommends to help organizations in South-east Asia reduce cloud costs.
- Resize cloud capacity regularly
A key advantage of cloud computing is the ability to scale up or down as business dictates. Organizations can buy what they need and provision for more as the situation changes. This prevents businesses from spending capital upfront to buy capacity they may not need in the future. Do not make the mistake of overbuying capacity when it is so easy to scale.
The main goal is to achieve maximum performance at the lowest possible cost by maintaining optimal compute, storage, and network settings. Failing to right-size or re-size cloud commitments regularly can lead to ballooning costs. It is a delicate balance to maximize workloads without overspending, so it is important to review the business’ needs regularly and re-size as appropriate.
- Embrace automation
Take advantage of automation tools that install, configure, and manage your computing services wherever possible. Automating tasks such as backup and storage, security and compliance, code deployment, settings, and configurations can reduce the amount of human intervention required.
This lowers manual errors and allows IT staff to focus on higher-level strategic business activities. Also, dynamic resource allocation can help balance loads to avoid over-utilization. Automated security sweeps can scan for potential security breaches. Cloud orchestration can configure resources to combine automated workflows into a single process and execute it.
- Schedule work and workloads
When your organization is not conducting business overnight or on the weekends, there is no need to schedule employees to staff the office, because payroll costs would balloon for no solid business reason.
However, organizations may be taking this same approach with cloud computing if the resources are unscheduled. Configure schedules to start and stop depending on workloads and work hours. If no one will be using the resources, there is no reason to keep them active.
This cloud strategy can also be applied to projects and deployments, as certain resources may only need to be active for specific periods.
- Review usage and apply analytics
The cloud computing provider’s dashboard and analytics can provide a starting point for optimizing costs.
Look for obvious signs of under-utilization. A cloud management platform (CMP) can also provide detailed cost modeling for more granular reporting.
Resources that are in constant use are good candidates for Reserved Instances and Committed Use plans, which can reduce costs when the capacity will be used at some point.
- Remove deprecated and unused items
It is so easy to store files and never use them again. Businesses’ cloud data centers likely contain a lot of unnecessary data.
Since companies are already paying for the capacity, IT teams should make it a regular process to deprecate or replace data as it becomes obsolete. Also check for orphan instances, volumes, or containers that are no longer in use for current projects.
Elastic load balancers (ELBs) can help distribute workloads and traffic, but companies pay for it whether it is used or not. If there are no instances associated with the ELB, delete it. The same goes for un-associated IPs and machine images. Of course, be careful not to delete items that may need to be recovered at a future date.
Businesses must ensure that their cloud strategy includes regular monitoring, automation, scheduling, and re-sizing to optimize investments. With ever-growing cloud usage, it has become crucial for organizations to optimize costs and manage IT budgets. Well-thought-out strategies can remarkably decrease cost and act as super savers. Now is the time to inculcate these quintessential strategies and ensure efficiency.
Yip added: “The recent shifts in automation and digitalization have facilitated quicker transformation and empowerment of the workforce. While the cloud computing was already prevalent before the pandemic, it is more relevant now to adapt technological innovations in the workforce. A strong and cost-effective solution is the right way forward.”