10 Things Should Know About AWS Cost Optimization

10 Things You Should Know About AWS Cost Optimization | Results from the ParkMyCloud Survey

We asked you: what are your AWS cost optimization priorities? The survey results are in! Here’s what we found.

1. Compute services dominate spend.

Almost half (48%) of the AWS spend reported was on EC2 instances. The service taking the next-biggest share of spend was storage (27%), followed by RDS/database (17%), and other services (8%). Not only are compute services growing, but they also have the tendency to quickly rack up spend.

2. Cloud management platforms are used by fewer than 1 in 8 companies.

Only 12% of respondents report using any sort of cloud management platforms. At first this may seem surprising, given the power that these platforms can have in unifying various cloud services and providing centralized control. However, from our experience, the lack of adoption in these platforms boils down to two things: they are complex, take significant resources to deploy andand are expensive. So perhaps it’s not so surprising after all.

3. Scheduling EC2 start/stop times with scripts is a popular solution, but not as popular as you might think.

We’ve previously discussed the use of home-grown scripts to turn instances off when not being utilized. Some developers like the control that scripting gives them over their AWS compute infrastrucuture  — about 37% reported using scripts to manage and control cost. (By the way… if you enjoy rants, maybe you’ll like this one against scripting. Thanks Dale.)

AWS cost optimization priorities4. Most users are diligent about not paying for unused services…

The most used cost optimization strategy reported is the deletion of unused volumes and snapshots, a best practice that 75% of respondents adhere to. Next up was turning off instances when not used, which 70% of respondents reported doing on a regular basis.

5. … But some have a long way to go.

A full 10% of respondents are using none of the most popular cost optimization strategies. That means no reserved instances, no spot instances, no turning off of instances when not being used, no deletion of unused volumes and snapshots. This group isn’t even right-sizing instances. Yikes!

Friends don’t let friends leave AWS environments untended… so do yourself a favor and start your free trial of ParkMyCloud.  You can have on/off schedules set on your non-production instances within 10 minutes, gaining up to 60% savings on these instances.

aws cost optimization strategies6. Users want to optimize current AWS usage before diving into anything new.

AWS is constantly releasing new products and services (as evidenced by the constant flow of announcements on their blog). However, users rated both reducing monthly spend and optimizing cloud utilization as almost twice as important a priority as utilizing new AWS services.

7. Governance and security are top priorities.

Will governance and security ever not be a priority? Probably not. One third of users rated governance and security as either their first or second priority over the next 12 months.

8. The burden of AWS cost optimization is on the users…

About 93% of respondents reported that Development/Engineer, IT operations, and DevOps are involved in cost reduction and optimization.

9. … but that doesn’t mean execs aren’t involved.

Even so, 25% of users reported that either the CTO or VP of R&D was involved in cost optimization, and 15% said Finance was as well.

10. AWS management presents a range of challenges.

When addressing such a prevalent and sprawling set of services as AWS, it’s not surprising that every organization has their own #1 challenge in AWS. In fact, the variety of these challenges is almost overwhelming:

  • Migration
  • Cost
  • Automation
  • Cloud lock-in
  • Learning new services
  • Governance
  • Educating teams unfamiliar with AWS
  • Scaling up services while maintaining control
  • Management
  • Changing focus from using the cloud for speed to using the cloud for cost control

… and the list goes on.

By the way, here’s who participated.

The survey respondents come from companies of all industries and sizes, ranging from 1-10 employees through 5,000+. They varied in amount of time they’ve been using AWS – 18% are new to AWS (have been using less than 1 year), 50% have been using AWS for 1-3 years, 30% have for 4-7 years, and 2.5% have for more than 7 years.

 

What have you learned about cost optimization in your organization lately?

 


About Katy Stalcup

Katy Stalcup is the Marketing Manager for ParkMyCloud, where she’s responsible for a wide variety of content development, campaigns, and events. Since ParkMyCloud's founding, she's evangelized its message of simple cost savings and automation (seriously, in the words of one of our customers, "There is literally no reason not to use ParkMyCloud"). Katy is a Northern Virginia native who is happy to contribute to the region’s growing reputation as an East Coast gathering point for technology innovation - particularly as a graduate of the Alexandria, VA Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology. She also earned bachelor’s degrees in communication and psychology from Virginia Tech. In her free time, she enjoys reading novels, playing strategy board games, and travel both near and far.

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