How to Ensure Your Cloud Budget is Aligned with Your Spend

June 28, 2013 by Diana Nolting

This is a series of posts appearing weekly that highlights the unique experiences, questions and successes individuals have their first year in the cloud. Posts are based on clients and non-clients alike. To submit your question, or story, tweet @Bluelock.

This week’s first year in cloud question is another common concern for users who have heard horror stories about runaway cloud costs, overspending and cloud budget woes. These horror stories are not the norm, however, and they are easily mitigated in advance.

“How do I ensure my budgeted cloud use is aligned with my spend?”

Everyone is worried about overspending, and not just in the cloud. As a provider, Bluelock’s CTO Pat O’Day has seen both ends of the spectrum when it comes to spending.

“I’ve seen the scenario when someone had unlimited spending and the CFO expected the bill to be $5000 and it came back at $25,000, because they hadn’t capped their usage in the beginning and they were using resources inefficiently,” recalls O’Day.

Inefficient resource use and “runaway” costs can occur when caps aren’t set and things aren’t turned off when they’re not needed.

“In this particular case, they just kept growing the environment bigger and bigger even though the business wasn’t getting more value from it,” O’Day continued.

On the other side of things, O’Day has seen people who are too restrictive in their caps. By allowing too few resources and not adjusting as demand increases your end users will have a bad user experience.

“The key is to make sure when you go into the cloud, that you have real-time visibility into your spending,” cautions O’Day. “Make sure, too, that the data you see relates to the performance of the application and the growth of the application that you have.”

The two most important analytics to see are:

1)   What you are currently spending or have spent.

2)   How that spending relates to what your usage is predicted to be over the next week or month.

If you’re projected to exceed what you’re spending you’re going to overspend, or you’re going to run out of resources and your users are going to have a bad experience, so you’ll need to adjust one or the other.

The majority, if not all, of these cloud horror stories can be stopped by making sure you have visibility and track your usage and spend. 


Are you just beginning your cloud journey? Contact Bluelock to find out how its holistic, stratified cloud philosophy can help you right-size your first year cloud needs. 

Interested in other first year tips and tricks? Here are some recent first year success blogs. 

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