Published: Jul 01, 2024

cloud cost optimisation: proven techniques and success strategies

Cost optimisation is the continual process of analysis and refinement in reducing your cloud spend. No matter the stage or scale of a cloud project, the principles of cost optimisation apply and maximise results for businesses.

A comprehensive cost optimisation framework, built with analytics, tracking and instance orchestration tools, offers:

  • Reduced costs. A cost-aware architecture that meets its business objectives will ultimately deliver the highest possible return on investment. Even single optimisations, such as AWS Reserved Instances (RIs) can save up to 75% on your ongoing spend.

  • Visibility of your cloud services. Cost optimisation tools offer greater accessibility of service-by-service performance, usage and cost data across time, so you can see the bigger picture and investigate the smallest of expenses.

  • Expenditure attribution. By matching your cloud expenses to projects, teams and revenue streams, you can better understand your spend and evaluate the success of your cloud project.

  • Simpler, more performant architectures. Cost optimisation involves the consolidation of your services into the most efficient and performant options offered by your cloud provider.

To drive down costs, take an ongoing approach to cost optimisation. As opposed to only optimising after completion of a project, an iterative approach accounts for changing factors in demand, service availability and your own business goals. Establish a process of analysis, budgeting and improvement to ensure you stay in a cost-optimised state. To maximise your savings, consider:

1. Removing and consolidating unused or unattached instances. These often accumulate when testing, migrating or closing services. Run a complete analysis of your instance-by-instance costs and usage metrics to identify services that can be closed without impact.

2. Right-sizing over-provisioned services. Cloud providers bill the full amount regardless of the actual usage. Reduce excessive instance sizes and migrate to more efficient families, matching supply and demand. Cost analytics tools can help identify wasteful service selections and lead you towards an optimal environment.

3. Taking advantage of alternative payment models with your cloud provider. You can accumulate significant long-term savings by committing to services.


Service offerings

The NCS FinOps team provides a cloud financial management service, powered by the NCS FinOps platform and FinOps certified practitioners, to provide cloud financial management advice on AWS, Azure and GCP. NCS was one of the first organisations in Australia to offer Cloud Financial Management services and has multiple clients across government, healthcare, insurance, retail, utilities and education sectors.

Our strategy is to offer services that support clients through their cloud financial management journey ranging from immediate cost reduction needs, to proactive (e.g. cost avoidance and anomaly detection) and strategic needs provided through our FinOps advisory services.

1. Cost Optimisation Assessment: Following our cost optimisation framework, this 4-6 week engagement is targeted at the needs of clients who have an urgent and immediate requirement to identify cost savings in their environment. Within 2-3 weeks an interim report will be provided that identifies non-intrusive initiatives that can be implemented for immediate realisation of savings. A comprehensive report will be provided at the conclusion of the engagement.


2. Cloud Financial Management: Our second service is a continuous and proactive Cloud Financial Management service. This service is underpinned by 3 pillars to help clients reduce and control costs within their environment:



Our Approach

We work closely with clients to actively reduce costs as projects architectures progress through the entire lifecycle. Our technical experts explore all possible optimisations and transform them into actionable cost-savings recommendations. Our optimization frameworks and proprietary tools allow us to uncover savings beyond what is offered through cloud native trusted advisor tools.

As an Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) partner, we also track the latest service and pricing updates to keep your environment efficient and evergreen.

We encourage visibility and data-driven decision making. We take the responsibility of cost optimisation off your team, allowing you to focus on what your business does best.


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