4 Ways To Cut The Costs Of Cloud Use
More and more businesses are moving away from data centers and migrating their business software to the cloud. This change can certainly make your business more agile and scalable but it can also be expensive. Read on for four easy ways to cut your business's cloud computing costs.
Monitor Your Cloud Use
The first time you get the bill for your monthly cloud computing you may wish you'd kept your data center and installed solar panels. The first step to keeping that bill in check is through constant, proactive monitoring. All of your work in the cloud is metered and that can be tough for your team to get used to. One of the easiest ways to monitor is to create alerts for specific scenarios like the following:
A resource has been idle.
The agreed-upon budget has been breached.
An instance usage is high enough that the pricing plan needs to be addressed.
Finally, use the autoscaler provided by your cloud vendor, or choose your own. Either way, this tool is specially designed to recommend the best pricing plan based on your usage.
Remove Unused Instances
Once you've got monitoring in place it will be easier to see where you are spending money unnecessarily. You are billed for instances you create even if you hardly ever or never use them. If your team has run a function and then forgotten to remove the instance or the storage volumes for work that's already completed, you're throwing money away every month. Use tools to automate your scheduling and create rules to terminate instances that are no longer in use. These rules will save you time because while you'll need to review the rules, they keep you from needing to manually review each instance.
Consolidate Your Business Accounts
If your teams are all running their cloud applications independently you could be losing out on the significant discounts vendors offer based on the volume of your business. You'll also have an easier time seeing your complete financial outlay at one go, rather than tracking down each department's cloud costs. Consolidating accounts also allows your organization to have a single account manager at the vendor. Use your size and personal relationship to negotiate the best prices available.
Don't Assume the Cloud Is Always the Answer
Yes, the cloud allows for access from any place at any time, and yes, it is based on building blocks of code that make instantaneous scalability a reality, but it's still not the right place for all of your apps and data. If regulations prohibit moving center data to the cloud, or where a hybrid structure can be better, you'll be saving money on the cloud by keeping at least part of your information in-house.
With the advent of 5G, cloud computing will be faster and more reliable than ever, but so will edge computing. With modular data centers providing storage and speed where you need it, you can create a strong hybrid that will keep you on the cloud where it makes sense but allow you to save money where you need to.
If you do invest in modular data centers, that might be the place to start adding those solar panels. This hybrid model is becoming known as "own the base, rent the peaks." Using the cloud to build out when your business is spiking but using more edge computing that you own for your day-to-day operations.
Read Your Invoice
Finally, put that cloud monitoring to use by actually reading, understanding, and acting on your invoice. Make sure it matches up with what your team is doing. Compare the licenses you have with the ones you have to get from your cloud vendor to look for possible savings.
Remember that moving your business to the cloud is no longer the only option. For most businesses, some sort of hybrid will be most effective. Pair that with a strong account manager relationship and vigilance within your IT team and you'll have a streamlined and cost-effective cloud computing partnership.