For organizations that are new to the public cloud, managing IaaS operations can be confusing. Failure to establish cost management best practices at an early stage of the cloud adoption process can lead to cost overruns and resource underutilization, but there’s a learning curve to understanding cost drivers, leveraging discounts, and implementing best practices.
As an IT leader, you should use Gartner’s Seven Steps to Reducing Public Cloud IaaS Expense report as a guide for laying the groundwork for effective management of your organization’s spend. Here is an overview of the steps:
1. Design and Adhere to a Tagging Plan
Tagging cloud resources with user-defined keywords makes them easy to track and identify. Consistency is key to effective searching and cost allocation.
2. Rightsize Resources
To avoid resource starvation or overbuying, you must select the appropriate resource profile for your organization’s needs and review utilization regularly. Ideal review frequency can range from hourly to monthly depending on the size and volatility of your deployment.
3. Choose an Appropriate Pricing Model
The agile “pay-as-you-go” model of cloud resource procurement requires little planning, but it comes at a premium. IaaS providers incentivize capacity planning with tiered pricing models. This creates ample opportunity to optimize your cloud spend, but only if you thoroughly understand your organization’s capacity requirements and the numerous options at your disposal.
4. Scrutinize and Limit Data Egress
Migrating data to the cloud (ingress) is usually free, but taking it back out (egress) can come at a price. As such, data egress should be carefully scrutinized to avoid unnecessary costs.
5. Reclaim Orphaned Resources
An automated tool should be used to run weekly—or in highly dynamic environments, daily—scans to identify cloud accounts that have been orphaned or forgotten.
6. Throttle Poorly Utilized Resources
Public cloud resources can be turned off when not in use to yield significant savings. You should do this consistently across large server groups.
7. Use the Free Tools
The major IaaS providers each provide their own basic set of free tools to alleviate certain tasks associated with monitoring and planning. If it’s free, use it!
For the full, in-depth guide to these seven steps, download the Gartner Report.
Gartner Seven Steps to Reducing Public Cloud IaaS Expense, Craig Lowery, Gary Spivak, 30 August 2016