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Optimize Cloud Usage & Cost

Framework / Domains / Optimize Cloud Usage & Cost

This Domain targets cloud efficiency by designing and building systems effectively, reducing waste and unnecessary usage over time, and optimizing rates paid for needed resources.

Within this Domain, organizations take action throughout the lifecycle of their cloud estates to introduce and improve the efficiency and cost effectiveness of its cloud use. Organizations will measure efficiency in a variety of ways, including monetary cost, carbon usage, or more traditional IT operational efficiency measures. Actions in this Domain will include managing the types and amounts of cloud resources used, when they are used, and the rates that are paid for required resources.

Optimizing cloud efficiency requires action by many personas across an organization continuously through the life of its cloud systems. This Domain contains the Capabilities which allow engineering groups to architect, design, build, operate, and continuously optimize applications for cost-effective operation. Architecting for cloud, effective resource utilization, responsibly acting on the impact of carbon use, reacting to changes in usage requirements or new cloud services, using licensed and SaaS models appropriately, and cost effective operational practices all lead to cloud efficiency.

Likewise, leadership, procurement, and finance personas will be involved in defining and maintaining a portfolio of commitments which will allow for the purchase and use of required resources at lower cost and/or with lower carbon footprint to meet the risk profile and business objectives of the organization.

This Domain ensures organizations only use the resources when and where they provide the most value to the organization; and that resources used are purchased at the lowest cost and impact to the environment possible which meet the organization’s goals.

The Capabilities in this Domain will help the organization:

  • Analyze and manage spend-based commitments and resource-based commitments
  • Optimize resource utilization and efficiency by building both manual and automated policies to help teams with how they use cloud services across the infrastructure
  • Design solutions with cost-awareness to maximize business value and achieve performance, scalability, and operational objectives
  • Establishing strategic metrics and criteria for incorporating sustainability goals into other FinOps Capabilities
  • Develop approaches for understanding and optimizing the use of software licenses and SaaS investments
  • Leverage FOCUS to standardize efficiency KPIs

This Domain directly supports these FinOps Principles:

  • Everyone takes ownership for their cloud usage
  • Teams need to collaborate
  • Decisions are driven by business value of cloud
  • Take advantage of the variable cost model of the cloud

Optimize Cloud Efficiency answers the questions:

  • Are engineering and product teams taking initiative to be responsible for their cloud use?
  • Are we making appropriate architecture, system design, license use, and operational feature choices when building in the cloud?
  • Are we matching our resource usage over time and in the location to the demand required to meet our organizational goals?
  • Are we paying an appropriate amount in financial cost and carbon usage to meet our goals and risk tolerance?