5 Ways to Lower AWS Utilization Costs

 In Accelerite Blog

The responsibility of consuming cloud resources judiciously does not lie with one employee in an organization. Multiple teams and business units participate in decisions related to AWS use and, thus, AWS spending – from engineering to marketing to finance and more.  Companies with large development teams that deploy instances onto AWS make these decisions every single day which can significantly shape the company’s total expenditure on AWS.

The key to managing AWS costs is fostering a culture that makes every team within the organization accountable for AWS spending. Creating a tight feedback loop between the monthly AWS bill and employees who drive AWS costs can help in changing usage behavior for the better. This is easier said than done. How can such a culture be infused within the organization?

To start with, every individual who uses AWS, even to a small extent, should completely understand the exact AWS costs and how they can be managed. Secondly, companies should lay down well-defined policies around AWS use. For example, it is essential to have a clear-cut policy for tagging instances and deploying workloads. Next, companies should actively promote best practices around usage so that each individual knows how they can contribute towards lowering AWS costs. They should encourage judicious spending behavior and patterns through incentives and playful competition.  When one team sees another team’s usage and expenditure, they can learn from each other and be motivated to consume cautiously.

As a company starts progressing on the right path towards building a saving-centric culture for AWS, it can follow these five ways to control costs all-year round.

1. Ensure visibility into AWS spending

Make sure that every individual working with AWS, irrespective of their job function, is aware of what the AWS bill looks like at the end of the month and how their behavior is affecting it. Companies usually have two types of employee roles – those who drive expenses and those who are responsible for controlling expenses. With an on-premises data center, very little attention is paid to which team is spending what, once the initial infrastructure has been bought. With AWS, the higher the usage, the greater the costs. When everyone is assigned the responsibility of managing costs, saving money becomes easier.

2. Concentrate on assigning costs to understand who is accountable for each component in the AWS bill

Divide your AWS bill into different cost clusters so that you can focus on unit expenditure and not the overall expenditure to figure out how you can save more. Establish a unique tagging format for each team and business unit to trace the owner and purpose of every resource. This will help all teams and individuals understand the costs they have incurred and optimize their usage in line with it. It will also help you distinguish if your bill is shooting up due to inefficient usage or because you are genuinely scaling and adding more users based on business needs.

3. Endorse cost-effective usage behavior to bring down the AWS bill

Constantly watch out for underused resources and shut them down. Weekends and nights account for close to sixty percent of the hours in a month. In all likelihood, development and testing resources will not be in use during that period and can be turned off. Take advantage of cloud management software to identify resources with low consumption of compute, storage I/O and bandwidth. You can shut down these instances and add them to a watch list to decide future usage.

4. Make the most of cost-saving opportunities offered by AWS

Reserved Instances come with a considerable discount, up to 75%, in comparison to On-Demand Instances and are one of the simplest ways to bring down costs. Spot Instances are also available at greatly discounted prices and prove to be an economical option for workloads that can afford to be interrupted. However, you need to estimate future consumption fairly accurately to avoid spending more money than you save.

 5. Select the right AWS service for your needs

In an environment as complex and specialized as AWS, choosing the wrong service can have a massive impact on cost as well as time. Ensure that you select the service that best suits your workload.  This can be quite challenging with the vast portfolio of services that AWS offers.

A tool like ShareInsights can further help organizations implement cost-savings measures for their analytics needs on AWS.  ShareInsights simplifies the use of AWS analytics services like S3, Glue, EMR, Spark, SageMaker, Athena, Kinesis, EC2, and more. It hides the complexities of these technologies in a drag-and-drop designer that lets users carry out all analytics operations from cataloging and preparation to visualization and machine learning, without writing any code. It offers cost forecasting so that users can estimate the expense of each service based on the specific workloads they plan to run. Importantly, ShareInsights automatically selects the most appropriate AWS-native analytics service for the analytics workload, orchestrates the service, executes the workload, and returns the results. Automated service selection along with cost forecasting can lower AWS utilization costs by as much as 20X.

Once all of the tactics outlined above are set in motion, organizations will start seeing significant savings on AWS. These methods can make it simpler to budget for and justify AWS spend in the future by creating predictability and transparency around expenses. Nobody will be shocked by the bill at the end of the month.

Contact us today to find out how ShareInsights can help you reap higher savings on AWS analytics.

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