Understanding the principles of cost optimization

Learn, from Google Cloud, how to make use of the numerous cost optimization features built into Google Cloud while also learning about necessary best practices and principles.

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About This Whitepaper

Optimize cloud costs with built-in tools. The cloud unlocks new opportunities to grow, facilitates innovation, and has become a major driver behind extending competitive advantage today. More importantly, since it is a technology, the cloud has a first-mover advantage attached to it, meaning businesses around the world are trying to adopt cloud computing as quickly as possible.

In many cases, this leaves little time for optimizing performance and even less for optimizing costs. Thankfully, businesses do not need to look outwards to optimize the cloud (nor for performance) - every tool and process they require is already built into the Google Cloud Platform so businesses can maximize value while minimizing costs

At the end of the day, the cloud is also an investment and its performance will be calculated on its ROI. The principles discussed in this whitepaper will help you increase efficient cloud usage, reduce costs, and drive up ROI.

Key Takeaways:

  • Cost optimization features cannot be fully utilized without the right team developing the right processes.
  • Google Cloud’s enhanced cost visibility solutions allow you to rely on data rather than assumptions.
  • Simply cutting costs is counter-intuitive. It’s important to identify and reinforce services with the most value while eliminating waste. Being fixated on cost-cutting may result in lost potential and eventually lost revenue.
  • Standardizing shouldn’t be just an end-goal but rather a primary requirement from the start.
  • Regular audits and reviews are the keys to operating efficiently and maximizing value over the long term.

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Understanding People And Processes

Even though Google Cloud has powerful cloud optimization tools built into the platform, these features, on their own, can only achieve limited cost optimization. These features are built with broad business scenarios in mind and are very capable. But every business has its own unique quirks and requirements - especially in how people and processes operate.

If the people (and what they do) are not aligned with the technology, one of two things happens. First, cost-cutting measures begin to impact employee productivity. Second, certain processes or workloads aren’t fully understood and thus aren’t fully optimized. In either scenario, the maximum value cannot be achieved.

Therefore, to reach the maximum efficiency possible, businesses must understand their people and businesses’ operations and apply the right best practices/principles.

Many of the best practices and principles discussed in this whitepaper including tiger teams, service-level recommendations, site reliability engineers (SREs), etc are designed specifically to combat this problem’s exact problem by aligning technology with people.

Enhanced Cost Visibility

Over time, business requirements, usage, and cost all change. More often than not, the changes are so subtle that they are deemed not impactful enough for a fresh review or audit. Even with modern monitoring tools, this is very common. But as you can imagine, ignoring these small changes does stack up and by the time action is taken - businesses have already lost significant amounts of money and time to unoptimized processes.

To prevent this from happening to your cloud infrastructure, Google Cloud offers enhanced cost visibility to give businesses greater insight into their changing demand trends, unused capacity, and other predefined business metrics. This data can be used to organize and stay on top of cloud costs even as your business grows and changes. Furthermore, this approach gives businesses the data they need to maintain custom dashboards that stream real-time data for informed decision-making round the clock.

Best Practices Broken Down For Easier Understanding

The Google Cloud ecosystem is massive. Even though most businesses are most likely to focus on just four “core” services, the sheer wealth of information can be overwhelming.

To make things easier, this whitepaper looks at best practices, optimization features, and pricing efficiency for each of four core cloud services including:

  • Compute costs in Google Compute Engine
  • Storage costs in Google Cloud Storage
  • Networking costs with VPC Flow Logs
  • Big data analytics costs in BigQuery

Not only that, but cloud experts also discuss various optimization methods that can be implemented along with the expected cost savings for each method (and how much effort is required in implementation).

Although you’ll still very likely require an expert team to efficiently deploy these optimization solutions, this whitepaper will help you understand what needs to be done when it needs to be done, and in what order.