Tenacity, a leading provider of cloud cost optimization tools, has just announced the launch of a new cloud cost management platform that helps users monitor and optimize their public cloud usage.
“As the use of cloud-based technologies continues to grow exponentially,” the founders say, “cloud visibility and intelligence tools that help organizations optimize and manage resources and eliminate unnecessary cloud usage and spend are critical to business performance and profitability.”
Over 90 percent of organizations now depend on cloud computing, but the majority of businesses still struggle to understand and manage cloud spending, which is supposed to be flexible but requires some management. This new tool allows internal teams to get eyes on the problem and reduce unnecessary costs.
In fact, this tool from Tenacity also helps a team budget, forecast and predict cloud usage costs with AWS and Azure all in one place. The platform recommends savings and automates cloud commitment management, to help users identify patterns of use and cloud savings opportunities.
Billing data, centralized reporting and more are all included. So, how are they marketing this tool to internal teams? We sat down with CTO Jason Yaeger to talk about the new Tenacity platform features and whom they help the most.
Managing Your Cloud Spend in a Cost-Conscious Economy
How can companies manage the shift from growth to managing margins in an uncertain economy?
“You can achieve managing margins if you know where all your costs are going in your environment,” Yaeger says. “Understanding what you have and eliminating the things that aren’t being used are the first steps to cutting unnecessary costs to manage margins.
“Then I have to understand where all my usage and spend is going in my environment. Say my spend has tripled in the last three months but my revenue is ten times. That spend might be justified. You might not want to stop the spend on that. We’ve had situations where one product group was exceeding their budget but also exceeding their revenue targets. They couldn’t tell the business where the spend was coming from until they understood who owned the costs in the environment. You have to understand your spend in your context to understand where it’s going and who is using it, so the business can conduct where it’s going.”
Through the spend usage management tool and figuring out cost allocations and charge backs, companies can understand where money is going to find out where they can effectively stop spending money. “Then you make sure you’re making use of the savings plans the provider offers in the most optimal way, which you can’t do at that scale manually,” Yaeger explains. “You have to have a tool to help you select the right things. The usage in billing files from cloud providers are cloud friendly but they’re not business friendly. What I mean by that is that if I’m spending $100k a month in cloud, my monthly billing file depending on what I’m using might be a 13-gig Excel spreadsheet with 100 million rows for one month. It’s born out of necessity. The reason why it is so complex is that you’re being offered services by the minute, which creates many entries. Because of the flexibility of how I can leverage and use cloud services, which has enabled companies to deliver things at a far greater pace, the billing and usage management becomes super complex.”
Who Should Be Using Cloud Spend Management Tools
So is this something general business teams could use, or just dedicated teams already managing AWS spend? “We target our audience by how much they spend on cloud services. If you’re spending at least $50k a month in cloud services, then you’re going to have a problem with managing your spend in the normal ways of doing things,” Yaeger says.
“One company Tenacity works with had their spend on cloud go from $60k to $180k per month in the course of this year. When they were spending $60k a month they were doing some things to help with cost optimizations but there was no coordinated effort to make sure spend was being optimized. But as soon as it tripled it became an issue.”
What’s The Best Way To Use a Cloud Spend Management Tool?
What’s the best way to make use of this tool and how does it help you reconfigure spend? “We help companies identify savings opportunities in their environment, so these could be things like idle or abandoned resources, or storage and life cycle policies that are a huge issue in cloud cost,” Yaeger says. “We help people save in spend in areas where they shouldn’t have even turned [the feature] on. We also help clients take advantage of commitments or savings plans, which are commitment based savings tools based on usage or spend. They’re very confusing savings tools. We help companies not only manage their commitment management but also we help them save the most amount of money they can by leveraging both those types of commitments in AWS and using logic to be able to select the best plans based on what they’re using.”
Tenacity also helps with budget and anomaly alerts to inform customers to mitigate errant spend before it happens or catch it right away. The company also has a bunch of spend reporting functionalities including executive reporting back to the business about your cloud spend in cost allocation groups and see what your company is doing to optimize your spending back to the business. All in all, it’s a tool that pays for itself if your cloud spend is getting unwieldy.
How Can Founders Get Through Uncertain Times?
Any advice for founders in these uncertain economic times when teams are being pressured to cut costs and keep growth moving? “You have to make sure you make hard decisions to get through whatever period of time this might last with economic uncertainty,” Yaeger says. “The hard thing about this economic situation is it’s all based on sentiment. If we all decided tomorrow this wasn’t happening then it won’t.
“Cash is king if you’re a startup, and you’re going to have to get super creative if you’re not a startup because here’s what’s happening: resources were tight before. That’s only going to get tighter. The people working at organizations that have to let people go as part of this potential impending slowdown are going to still have the same amount of workload with some fraction less of staff to be able to do these things. So if you don’t find a partner to help you with cloud spend and optimization, if I have to make the choice of making sure my customers are up or internal users are up or spending time trying to save money, where do you think I’m going to spend my time if I’m at one of these organizations? You have to find people and software to help. The more people are crunched for time, the more they’re going to want to pay other people to do it for them.”