The individuals responsible for implementing and maintaining an organization’s IT environment are required to make a lot of tough decisions. Decision-makers are often tasked with operating within the constraints of a limited IT budget while trying to maximize the value of the systems and solutions. They need to ensure the business has the IT capabilities it needs to compete without wasting resources or overspending.

Cloud environments present additional challenges when attempting to optimize IT spending and simultaneously meet business requirements. Many organizations have implemented complex hybrid or multi-cloud infrastructures to better meet their objectives. Keeping track of the diverse components and multiple vendors used to construct these infrastructures can be a daunting undertaking.

We are going to discuss why monitoring cloud spending is an essential part of efficiently managing your IT environment. We will look at the reasons for monitoring and the potential issues of not paying close attention to your cloud spending. Finally, we will investigate the solutions offered by VAST IT Services that provide the insights into your environment that you need for successful optimization.

Why Do You Need to Monitor Cloud Spending?

You need to monitor cloud spending for a very simple reason. Without monitoring, your cloud spending can quickly get out of control. The anticipated cost savings of a cloud migration can evaporate and result in budget overruns and pressure from upper management. You must obtain actionable insights that optimize cloud spending and minimize waste.

When dealing with multi-cloud or hybrid environments, each environment should be looked at individually to determine if there are opportunities for further optimization or to trim the IT budget. It may turn out that you can eliminate certain services, scale them back, or move particular infrastructure components or applications to another cloud service provider (CSP).

Following are some of the specific issues and areas of your infrastructure that require monitoring and visibility into how you are spending your cloud budget.

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offerings

SaaS solutions are a great way for a company to quickly add functionality without purchasing and maintaining new hardware. All infrastructure components required to support an SaaS application are provided by the CSP. Organizations are typically charged based on the number of users accessing the application.

Companies can control spending on SaaS solutions in two ways.

  • Ensure they are not paying for additional licenses that are not needed or are no longer in use. Businesses should look for flexible terms that allow them to scale usage of SaaS applications. Right-sizing SaaS solutions should be a regular practice to avoid cost overruns.
  • Guard against shadow IT where employees use unapproved SaaS solutions to address business requirements. Organizations need to closely monitor cloud bills and identify applications that can be removed for cost savings.

Cloud storage solutions

How a company uses cloud storage can have a significant impact on its monthly bills. CSPs usually have multiple storage tiers available that provide varying levels of data availability. For example, business-critical data can be stored where it is instantly accessible while long-term archives may use a less expensive storage option that may require patience to access.

Businesses should review and inventory data resources to ensure they are using the correct storage tiers. They may also want to investigate the options available from competing CSPs to see if there is an opportunity for savings. Finally, companies should make sure they are not inadvertently duplicating storage using multiple vendors in a multi-cloud environment

Cloud backup solutions

Many organizations make use of cloud backup solutions due to their flexibility and potential cost-effectiveness. Backup solutions offered by CSPs are often similarly tiered as with storage options. More frequent and accessible backups can be implemented for important information and dynamic data that regularly changes while less important data may be backed up on a less aggressive schedule.

Companies need to understand their data resources and how they are currently being backed up. They may have contracted for a backup solution that is not the most cost-effective for their situation. Other options, such as VAST’s Cloud Backups-as-a-Service (CBaaS) may offer a way to protect data while trimming the IT budget.

Compute and network capacity

Many CSPs offer organizations multiple ways to pay for computing and network capacity. Paying a flat rate for a designated level of resources may be an attractive option that streamlines management responsibilities. A company may find that better plans are available that charge for actual instead of projected resource usage.

Vendor management

CSPs are constantly introducing new offerings, some of which may directly impact a company’s cloud spending. After considering their options and current vendor commitments, an organization may decide that the most effective route is to migrate all or some of its cloud presence to a new provider.

VAST Provides the Insights You Need for Efficient Cloud Spending

The ability to monitor cloud spending is directly dependent on the visibility and insights you have into your environment. Acquiring the necessary insights can be challenging and take an inordinate amount of time without employing a specialized solution. Fortunately, VAST has your back with a cloud management platform that provides the information you need to make effective decisions regarding your cloud spending.

VAST View is a comprehensive software solution that provides organizations with the information necessary to obtain actionable insights about their cloud environment. The data available from VAST View allows organizations to optimize cloud spending and maximize the value of their cloud infrastructure. Following are some of the features and types of information available through VAST View.

  • Discovery and assessment let you understand your environment so informed decisions can be made regarding current or new cloud solutions.
  • VAST View’s planning and migration services can be used to help determine which cloud vendor best aligns with your unique business objectives. This information can be vital in an initial migration or when moving to a new vendor.
  • The platform’s cloud management services are designed to assist organizations control costs, optimize the environment, set policies, and perform data governance activities.

Call the cloud experts at VAST today and start obtaining the insights you need to optimize cloud spending while maintaining an efficient IT environment.