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Cloud Cost Optimization: Why a Cloud Assessment Just Makes Sense

Cloud costs have become a major problem for industries around the globe. As companies expanded use of cloud services, costs have risen well beyond expectations. According to ZDNet, Global cloud services and infrastructure spending on public services will surpass $370 billion by 2022, but even still, companies that attempt to avoid the heavy costs of public services will still find themselves spending more for private services that may go well beyond the actual needs of the business.

While the as-a-service (aaS) market moves to add new features and allow for easy infrastructure expansion, the risk of higher spend increases. If companies drop the ball in cost management, the complexities of the cloud can shroud final costs and lead to higher IT spend. As a result, companies with trouble maintaining control over cloud costs should seriously consider the use of a cloud assessment to realize what costs are occurring and how to contain them. In fact, consider these top reasons why a cloud assessment can help isolate instances of over- or under-spending and their value.

1. INFORMATION GATHERING IS ESSENTIAL TO SUCCESSFUL CLOUD COST OPTIMIZATION

The issue of waste remains a vital problem in the use of cloud computing technology. Most businesses simply do not realize the sheer volume and costs associated with their existing cloud resources. Businesses traditionally allow individual departments to obtain and manage their cloud needs. Unfortunately, this opens the door to the inefficient use of resources, including “zombie” files that have been abandoned and sit, wasting resources and adding no value. Conducting a cloud assessment can highlight these issues, identifying departments that are being wasteful, showcasing areas where there might be duplicate SaaS spend and allowing your IT team to better leverage their budget and improve internal spend strategy. It’s a win-win for all involved and allows a company to maintain vigilance over cloud resource use.

2. A COMPREHENSIVE WORKLOAD ANALYSIS ENSURES YOUR CLOUD REFLECT THE NEEDS OF TODAY’S BUSINESS, NOT THAT OF YESTERYEAR

A cloud assessment also includes a workload analysis. Workload analyses ensure the cloud resources used today actually reflect the real-world needs of your business. Remember that workloads change with time. Strategies from yesteryear are not necessarily reflective of the productive cloud environment today. Moreover, organizations leveraging hybrid cloud capabilities may have similar data sets or processes housed in both public and private cloud environments, effectively doubling cloud costs unnecessarily. During a cloud assessment, a third party will review all workloads and provide recommendations for workloads that should remain in the cloud, those you may want to migrate there and those that you can find lower cost options for.

3. COST CONTAINMENT LEADS THE INDUSTRY FOR TOP CLOUD INITIATIVES

The need to save money on IT resources and use of cloud capabilities is not new. In fact, most organizations recognize cloud initiatives have a higher cost than expected, contributing to the need for increased cost containment. In a 2019 survey of spending in cloud capabilities, 64% of respondents cited the need to optimize existing use of cloud services to achieve cost savings as a top cloud initiative. If your corner office hasn’t yet asked your department to consider lowering its IT costs, it is only a matter of time. So, an assessment now could help you avoid a sudden jolt when the budget is slashed in the future.

4. DEPARTMENTAL CLOUD PURCHASES AND WASTED INSTANCE USE CASES LEAD TO HIGHER, UNCHECKED COSTS

Department cloud purchases can do much more damage than just create “zombie files,” explains Tech Target. The process could simply be overlooked, leaving it to run in the background of the cloud, wasting resources. Duplicate applications may also exist, and in some cases, it can become difficult to distinguish which applications contain the most accurate data and value. Wasted cloud resources also effectively lower your available resources for mission-critical workloads. Failure to maintain control over these departments even post-assessment will result in the recreation of issues later. As a result, organizations should create strict policies and protocols for the provisioning of cloud resources, eliminating the risk from the beginning. But again, the assessment is the opportunity to find out which departments have made a bad habit of over-provisioning assets and/or which departments may have room to spare.

5. AN OPTIMIZED DATA STORAGE STRATEGY ENABLES CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT AND COST MANAGEMENT

Cloud cost optimization also relies on an optimized data strategy, continuously changing the data storage resources in use to add value to an organization. This is more important than ever as data volume and potential application grew exponentially in recent years. Now, it is not enough to simply purchase and configure storage. An effective cloud cost strategy must consider the frequency of accessing data, the risk of cyber security breaches, and whether data age and value requires a second-tier storage. Optimization also allows for a review of system processes, automating functions that may not have been possible as little as a few years ago.

6. REGULAR RISK ASSESSMENTS AVOID EXTRA SPEND ON SEPARATION OF SENSITIVE AND ROUTINE DATA

The topic of cyber security and the threat for breach remain integral concerns in managing your cloud strategy. Today cyber criminals exploit every vulnerability and contribute to some of the largest data breaches in the history. Organizations may also store sensitive data in a public cloud, resulting in a higher risk. Meanwhile, the opposite may apply, storing too much sensitive data in the private cloud, incurring additional costs when the data is not necessarily as sensitive as originally believed. Organizations need to balance the risk and cost to maximize value and avoid waste. As a result, regular risk assessments, which might be included in your cloud assessment, can help an organization avoid extra spend on maintenance and separation of sensitive versus routine data.

7. CHOOSE AN EXPERT IN CLOUD COST OPTIMIZATION TO SUCCEED

Not all cloud experts are equal, and plenty of servicers exist that will simply provide a baseline review and leave your organization stuck to figure out the rest. However, a strong IT services provider, such as Comport, will thoroughly review your business goals, identify the strengths and weaknesses in your cloud management strategy, and walk your company through a comprehensive cloud assessment. Explore more about how Comport’s technical team can help your organization develop future-ready cloud cost optimization strategies by visiting Comport online or calling 1-800-830-0880 now.

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