Business woman in office managing multicloud cost envrionmentAs organizations adopt hybrid working and continue to move their IT infrastructure to the cloud, many have used multiple public cloud providers to piece together their new digital foundations. This approach is known as “multicloud.”

Many businesses have adopted multicloud environments to power the latest wave of digital transformation. But, multicloud should perhaps come with a warning when it comes to cost management. Multicloud costs can prove difficult to manage and possibly spiral out of control in the blink of an eye if not managed correctly. To minimize—or completely remove—this risk, you need to be smart about how you approach multicloud cost management.

This blog looks at ways to help you better manage multicloud cost environments and explore how to make your cloud set up fighting fit—rather than fighting you.

The main challenge of multicloud cost management

Regulating costs is the biggest challenge for multicloud management. Without the right planning and systems in place, you’ll soon discover your cloud costs are getting out of hand. If it takes the shock of an unexpected bill to learn your cloud cost set-up isn’t optimized, then, unfortunately, it’s already too late.

Cloud costs are very good at hiding—due to having to go to multiple cloud management portals and different places within those portals to manage cloud costs. You also need to set up multiple reports within these portals, which means a lot of swiveling around.

Without the right planning, it often takes the shock of an unexpected bill to realize a piece of runaway code has caused havoc. And this is more likely to happen with multicloud environments because your costs and cost-tracking are spread across the cloud tech stack and isolated from each other.

For example, runaway code queries can consume compute without anyone knowing. Human error can also be a cause if someone forgets to turn a program off, and it runs all month in the background without anyone noticing. And there’s the risk of malicious actors or malicious code triggering activity out of view. This is simply harder to spot when you have complex multicloud environments.

To help prevent this from happening, you must find a solution that consolidates the views of a multicloud environment, uses machine learning to spot cost anomalies, and consolidates your multicloud budgets into one location.

Three ways to manage multicloud cost environments

So, how can organizations keep a closer eye on multicloud costs? Here are three options.

  1. FinOps

FinOps is the financial management of cloud spend. It’s a set of principles and practices that help ensure you stay on top of multicloud costs. As such, FinOps teams are increasingly becoming a fixture at leading organizations. You can learn more about FinOps and cloud cost management by reading our whitepaper on the topic.

  1. Follow a Cloud Adoption Framework

Each cloud has its own adoption framework, such as AWS or Microsoft Azure’s CAF, which delivers a comprehensive guide on how a company should set up cloud IT. Many companies move to the cloud in an ad hoc or haphazard manner without any guiding framework. CAF provides this framework, including how to better manage multicloud costs.

  1. Teaming with a trusted cloud partner vs. cloud provider

To really get a hold on multicloud costs, you need to bring in the cloud experts. A cloud provider is in the business of selling cloud solutions or products, whereas a cloud partner is in the business of making the cloud work for you.

FREE White Paper – Take Control of Cloud Spend with the Power of FinOps

The next section will explain how MessageOps helps manage multicloud cost environments as a trusted cloud partner.

Manage multicloud cost environments with MessageOps

Multicloud cost management requires visibility and clarity. The governance solutions that come out-of-the-box with many vendors are not up to the job—and are always only interested in monitoring their own applications. For instance, if you want discovery functionality across your entire cloud tech stack, you are out of luck. This can lead to complex workarounds for IT teams.

Additionally, your IT team might have to automate data discovery or build custom applications for greater visibility—both highly time- and cost-intensive.

When you partner with MessageOps, you get access to Inscape™, a suite of multicloud management tools that take care of all this and more.

Inscape Multicloud Cost Management & Visibility

With Inscape multicloud cost management, you can inform and empower your teams with cost visibility, allocation, benchmarking, budgeting, and forecasting. Here are some of the benefits of using Inscape:

  • Quickly and easily ascertain which users, departments, teams, projects, and/or applications are accountable for cloud cost and usage.
  • Discover cloud cost and usage trends for the accurate forecasting of budgets, and the reduction of inaccuracies and anomalies.
  • Save profile templates for the Azure or AWS accounts, subscriptions, resource, and/or resource groups that your business units are responsible for and receive email notifications showing your latest cost snapshot.
  • Grants the ability to quickly recognize opportunities in order to reduce unnecessary and/or wasted spend.
  • Establish fundamental business metrics to which cloud data can be strategically aligned, thus ensuring a comprehensive view of common goals and their attainment status.
  • Continual analysis and reporting of spend, inducing enterprise-wide accountability.
  • Establish budget guidelines and governance policies that proactively monitor and provide alerts, enabling complete optimization and unparalleled cost control.
  • Easily produce effective and fully customizable reports that can be automated and exported into multiple formats.

Inscape also gives you the opportunity to optimize your cloud spend and get access to recommendations related to cost savings, security and performance. Each recommendation includes an estimate of potential (monthly) savings when implemented, related to unassociated resources, underutilized resources, idle resources, low utilized resources, and more.

Inscape Anomaly

Using machine learning algorithms, Inscape Anomaly provides quick, cost anomaly alerting and prediction for your Azure or AWS environment. Inscape Anomaly offers a simple dashboard where you can get a look at what is happening in your Azure or AWS subscription, apply changes to alerts, and view reports. It shows historical, current, and forecast data of your more relevant resources (those that it considers you should pay attention to), so you do not have to dive into hundreds of resources.

How Inscape Anomaly works

  1. Analysis: Using machine learning algorithms, Inscape Anomaly inspects your Azure and/or AWS subscriptions daily by looking for anomalies that can impact your Azure bill. It gets granular and can track your spend at the Subscription, Resource Group, or Individual Resource level.
  2. Alerts: Easily set up email alerts to get notified of any anomalies, including anomalies in new Azure or AWS resources. Also, get notified immediately of any creations or deletions in your environment.
  3. Discovery: Inscape Anomaly helps identify what could have caused the anomaly by showing the changes that happened in Azure or AWS at the time the anomaly was identified and the days leading up to it.
  4. Prediction: With our machine learning capabilities, Inscape Anomaly is uniquely positioned to predict future cost anomalies. It will show you the future date and our cost prediction for that date, and also identifies which AWS or Azure Subscription, Resource Group, and Resource the anomaly will happen in, so you can take action.

We can help

Cloud computing enables better innovation, more flexibility, and an attractive pricing model for businesses of all sizes. The cost management challenge of multicloud is an unfortunate part of the territory. But it doesn’t have to put limits on your business.

MessageOps helps to provide the solutions and services—not to mention expertise and experience—to manage multicloud cost environments. We’ve worked with public and private sector organizations to design, deploy, and manage cost-efficient, secure, and productive cloud environments, and we can help you too.

To learn more about how our multicloud cost management tools can help you achieve your goals, schedule a free demo today.


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