Getting Cloud Rightsizing Right

07.11.19
CloudHealth Tech Staff

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Achieving a degree of cloud rightsizing is not particularly difficult when you consider the tools cloud service providers offer to help manage the cloud. Despite all the tools available to help businesses rightsize their clouds, it has been estimated that between 35% and 45% more than necessary is spent on public cloud services. By focusing on how cloud rightsizing can improve resource efficiency and reduce infrastructure waste, you can reduce associated costs.  

So, what’s causing businesses to operate inefficiently and overspend in the cloud in the first place? And, what’s preventing businesses from getting cloud rightsizing right? 

 
 
cloud rightsizing

Many businesses still maintain an on-premises mentality where the mindset is that running infrastructure is a fixed cost... this doesn't translate well to the cloud.

What causes overspending in the cloud?

Many businesses still maintain an on-premises mentality where the mindset that the cost of running infrastructures is fixed, meaning it doesn’t matter if assets are left running when they aren’t needed or that VMs are over-provisioned when they are deployed. Unfortunately, that mindset doesn’t translate well to the cloud, where you pay for the resources you provision, regardless of how much of that workload is ultimately being utilized. 

This issue has been exacerbated by the decentralization of IT due to non-IT departments setting up their own cloud environments to accommodate their specific workloads. When this is replicated across a business, it results in unnecessary duplication of cloud services, driving up cloud costs and contributing to the total amount overspent in the cloud, and creates a culture of unaccountability. 

Solutions for rightsizing your cloud

To rightsize your cloud, you first need to have total visibility of all the cloud services used within your business. This may mean re-centralizing your IT department, or at least ensuring every department is using the same account to operate their Line of Business cloud environments. 

You will encounter issues if you use the tools available from cloud service providers because some (i.e. AWS) only provide utilization metrics over a fixed period, others (i.e. Azure) don’t provide full visibility into unused assets, and a few (i.e. Google Cloud Platform) require you to install monitoring agents on your resources in order to get a full set of utilization metrics.

The problem gets worse if you have assets deployed on more than one cloud. The tools available from cloud service providers for cloud rightsizing only help you rightsize the assets in their clouds, and aren’t great for monitoring your multicloud environments. 

Getting cloud sizing right

With granular visibility, you’ll be able to identify which assets are over-provisioned or have been left running idle when they’re no longer be used. 

Getting cloud rightsizing right doesn’t end there—it’s an ongoing process. CloudHealth has automation capabilities you can use to monitor your cloud environment around the clock, and whenever an event occurs that creates unnecessary cloud costs, CloudHealth takes a specific action depending on how you’ve configured your environmental guardrails. For example:

  • Cost Trends: Receive a notification when costs increase by a user-defined percentage over a week, month, or another period of your choice.
  • Over-Provisioned VMs: Receive a notification when a VM is being under-utilized over a week, month, or another period of your choice. 
  • Unused Assets: You can configure CloudHealth to terminate unused assets, such as unattached storage volumes and IP addresses, after a user-defined period of time.  

Further benefits of CloudHealth’s policy-driven automation

The above examples are all very useful ways to rightsize your cloud and minimize cloud spend. However, the benefits of CloudHealth’s policy-driven automation don’t stop with cloud rightsizing. 

Once you have rightsized the resources in your cloud environment, you’ll be able to identify any assets that can be upgraded to the latest generation for greater efficiency, non-production assets that can be scheduled to be on only when they are going to be used, and take advantage of opportunities to purchase reservations for pricing discounts to further reduce cloud spend.