6 things that may be holding you back from Azure optimisation (and 1 quick way to get there).

March 15 2022, by Macquarie Technology Group | Category: Cloud Services

Cloud adoption is off and racing. We’ve seen a 20% year on year increase in public cloud expenditure in Australia1, and 77% of businesses now say they have at least one application, or a portion of their enterprise computing infrastructure, in the cloud.2

But while the adoption of cloud has delivered some essential benefits and provided both employers and employees with all-important flexibility, overall feedback with regard to cloud optimisation is less than ideal:

  • 75% of companies say they haven’t achieved their cloud objectives.3
  • Only 35% say they have fully achieved their expected outcomes across the four categories of cost, speed, business enablement and service levels.4 

What’s going on?

In many businesses, it’s quite simply a case of ‘too much, too soon’. In the haste to move workloads to the cloud during the pandemic, many businesses inadvertently over-invested didn’t migrate the right workloads or don’t have the right configuration and controls in place.

As a result, cost optimisation in Azure has simply been overlooked. Here at Macquarie Cloud Services, we see customers paying, on average, 26% more for Azure than they should.

It’s no wonder 52% of IT leaders said higher than expected cloud costs, post-migration, was their #1 challenge last year.5 

Cost optimisation in Azure: the top 6 challenges.

When it comes specifically to Azure, we typically see our clients facing six common challenges to effective Azure cost management:

#1 – Over provisioned compute and resources.

Just as a hastily packed suitcase often contains far more for a holiday than is actually needed, it’s not uncommon for organisations to overprovision their workloads when moving to the cloud in a hurry. Not all workloads have the same requirements, and a ‘just in case’ approach can mean many workloads don’t necessarily end up in the most suitable environment for their size, security requirements and usage.

Also, the way in which applications are used can change over time, and it’s important they are regularly checked and reviewed to ensure organisations aren’t paying for speed, security or capacity requirements you simply don’t need.

#2 – A new world of security risk.

We’re living in a world in which security risks are expanding constantly. Over the 2020–21 financial year, the ACSC received over 67,500 cybercrime reports, an increase of nearly 13% from the previous financial year.6

The security threats in a corporate public cloud environment are constantly changing, and require continuous management and response. A lack of Azure optimisation can very quickly lead to dangerous – and very costly – gaps in security and resilience.

#3 – Assumption your cloud provider has you covered.

In many instances, organisations assume that their cloud provider will manage all of their compliance and governance on their behalf. While Azure does have security precautions in place, ultimately, your organisation is responsible for ensuring your Azure environment is configured, managed and consumed in the best possible way – to ensure the highest degree of protection. Simply leaving it up to your provider can lead to potentially costly compliance gaps.

#4 – Lack of understanding of compliance requirements.

Just as many organisations end up with over-provisioned cloud environments due to hasty uptake, this can also happen when organisations lack sufficient understanding of their compliance requirements. In a bid to protect their data no matter what the situation, it’s not uncommon for businesses to take more precautions than may be necessary for certain instances, which can be costly. This may include, for instance, overspending on backup processes, or putting overly vigorous security protection processes in place on workloads that don’t have any sensitive data.

#5 – 24/7 isn’t necessary for all resources.

It’s also not uncommon for businesses to pay to support their cloud-based resources 24/7, even those that aren’t needed after-hours. In fact, turning off ‘after hours’ support for particular applications can help many organisations save hugely on their cloud costs.

#6 – Azure optimisation is too reliant on individuals.

To be effective, Azure optimisation needs to be an ongoing process. Typically, this is managed by internal IT resources, however, when these people leave the business, they can take their IP with them – leaving the rest of the business exposed and unsure what steps need to be taken. This can result in inefficiencies and the organisation paying more than it needs to.

So, what can be done?

The good news is that Azure cost optimisation can be relatively simple and straightforward with the help of Macquarie Lens.

Developed by Macquarie Cloud Services and VMware CloudHealth™, Macquarie Lens is an easy to use, 10-minute self-service assessment tool that allows you to safely and easily run a comprehensive audit of your cloud infrastructure. Our experts will then produce a detailed insights report covering your Azure services, policies, risk exposure and Azure cost optimisation best practices.

Interested in this Azure cost management tool? Get in touch or book an assessment today.

5 Adapt 2021 CIO Survey