It’s unlikely anyone needs a reminder that 2020 has been a chaotic year for most businesses. Disruption occurred at such a scale that even organizations with impeccable business continuity plans had to adapt in some way. The better-positioned companies, though, were those that had already migrated business-critical data to the cloud and added as-a-service applications to workflows. Enterprises that hadn’t done this quickly realized what they were missing. That means as organizations prepare for the next disruption and aim to become more resilient, there will be a mad dash in the coming year to implement more cloud computing services and as-a-service models.
The Magic of Cloud
The cloud isn’t just a storage locker for data anymore. It has truly transformed the way we do business – not only to support new and evolving infrastructure needs, but also to enable stronger collaboration among remote teams.
Cloud computing services give businesses greater flexibility with their data and applications. Organizations now can share resources and files in real time, from anywhere in the world, which is crucial in the era of interconnected businesses and mobile workforces. Plus, cloud can scale up or down, depending on business needs.
As-a-Service, at Your Service
In the old days, IT departments could be cost centers. They relied on cumbersome hardware and software that could quickly become obsolete, and they were not structured to operate at optimal performance.
As-a-service models – services through cloud-based, on-demand platforms – allow much more agility. Software no longer lives on physical discs that IT must install on each individual computer, and IT doesn’t have to continually purchase new versions to stay current. Instead, software now lives in the cloud. Every time a new update comes out, either IT or the user can update the program with a few clicks. This also means as-a-service models can offer cost savings. Businesses, in theory, only pay for what they need and use, and the low monthly fees are designed to lower hefty software and hardware costs.
Resilience is Everything
Cloud technology and as-a-service applications improve business resilience. And 2020 taught us there’s really no such thing as being too prepared, so they’re going to be big parts of the “new normal.” But organizations also must make sure they don’t open the door to a different kind of business risk: out-of-control costs.
The Hidden Costs of Cloud Services
It can be tricky to move operations to the cloud without breaking the bank. And cloud costs don’t stop after migration. The as-a-service model means monthly fees — and monthly invoices that can be thousands of lines long and hard to understand. Despite how long these invoices can be, they often lack detail. That can lead enterprises to pay for capacity that is larger than what they need. This leads to resources allocated to the cloud that sit unused and idle.
Cloud spending hit a record $34.6 billion in the second quarter of 2020. That was a 30% bump from the previous year, and 11% increase just from the previous quarter. Further, IDG estimates nearly a third of IT budgets will be dedicated to cloud services by next year. If enterprises are going to be spending this kind of money, why not get the most out of it?
Managing Cloud Spend
That’s where cloud reporting software comes in. Services like Tangoe’s can help organizations manage cloud and as-a-service expenses in three key ways:
- Gain visibility into usage. It’s likely your entire workforce will or does use the cloud, not just the IT department, and you need to be able to see how they’re using it and what services they’re using. You also need to see how usage changes over time to predict and budget for future IT costs.
- Find ways to be more strategic about usage. Once you understand how your organization uses the cloud, you often can make changes that optimize your cloud infrastructure, spend and contracts. For example, you can shift to a new vendor, or turn up/turn down reserve instances.
- Control costs. Your investment in cloud is not going to be a one-and-done thing. More cloud applications become available all the time, and if you hope to implement initiatives like big data analytics or automation, you may need to increase your cloud capacity. Cloud reporting software helps you monitor your costs and identify areas you might be overspending. It can indicate where you may need to increase or decrease your investment in some services, or reallocate budget to be more efficient with funds while supporting new strategies.
Cloud reporting software gives organizations clear visibility into their cloud and as-a-service spend. This allows a business to reevaluate their infrastructure needs, optimize spend and gain the agility to navigate ever-changing market conditions. Remember, while the pandemic was a once-in-a-lifetime event, the next disruption is always around the corner. Focus on understanding and maximize technology investments like cloud and as-a-service, and your business will be set up for success in 2021 and beyond.
Don’t let cloud expenses spiral out of control. Learn how Tangoe’s Platform helps you understand, control and optimize cloud spend. Get a demo today.