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FinOps – Regaining Control of Cloud Costs

April 30, 2020

Many companies have now migrated either all or a significant part of their workloads into a public cloud infrastructure. Unfortunately, the reality of their monthly expenditure bill doesn’t often resemble the costs agreed within the original business case. As a result, many companies are struggling to regain control of their cloud spend.

In the past IT costs were limited by the hardware in the Data Center.  Through the procurement process, a mistake in a piece of code can lead to costs spiralling out of control within seconds. And alarmingly, it may take a while for anybody to even notice this

Pushing the button

Cloud has created a shift in the procurement process where developers or operations teams will now initiate the actual purchase of services. This is a fundamental change to the financial operations within IT and was often previously overlooked whilst making the shift to cloud computing.  We are now relying on our front line to balance performance and costs, monitor usage and shut down unused systems, whilst still performing their day job. This may be a big ask.

An ever more complex cloud

With new services being added to their portfolio on an almost daily basis, cloud has become far too complex for anyone to fully oversee the options of even a single cloud vendor. Then there are also different ways of consuming these services: pay as you go, reserved instances, saving plans etc. This all adds to the number of options to obtain a service. Without a structured approach to cloud cost management the cloud will remain an expensive place to be in.

Taking back control

What DevOps did for Development, FinOps does for Finance: breaking down the barriers between departments and bringing together the different roles in IT, Business and Finance to optimize the financial operations for Cloud. FinOps has three irritative steps: Inform, Optimize and Operate.

The first step ‘Inform’ is about bringing the right information to all stakeholders. Gaining insight and understanding the current spend of the organisation.

‘Optimize’ is about reducing waste: rightsizing the environment, removing unused resources and applying savings plans, commitments and such.

When this process gets embedded in daily operations you are working on the ‘Operate’ step of the FinOps model.

As we have seen before cloud is not just a different consumption model. It creates the need for us to rethink our organisational structures and change the way we work. All change is hard, so it will need strong support within all levels of the organisation for it to be successful. The motivation to start this change arrives in your mailbox every month.

How we can help!

Drawing upon a wealth of client experience,Capgemini offers consultancy to businesses looking to optimize their financial operations for cloud services, As an example tooling has been embedded into services such as Capgemini Cloud Platform to support FinOps for existing customers. If you are looking to introduce  FinOps in your organization, a Cloud Cost Optimization assessment can be the right first step: It will deliver insight into the current spend of the organisation and will provide clear guidance and best practices to prepare for the “Optimize” step of the FinOps framework.

Please reach out to me through LinkedIn if you have any queries relating to this blog and FinOps. Happy to help!


Simon van den Doel

Cloud Migration Offer Leader