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AWS Cost Anomaly Detection: One Element of Cloud Cost Intelligence

|October 8, 2020|

Every decision that an engineer makes in the cloud impacts cost.

Yet we know that engineers aren’t cost experts, and many worry that asking them to care about cloud cost will slow them down and distract them from delivering customer value.

Top cloud-native companies dedicate entire teams of engineers to build custom tools to measure unit cost and deliver cloud cost to engineering teams.

But I’m guessing you don’t have eight engineers you can spare to build internal cost tools? You’d rather have your team focus on delivering features!

That’s where a great, automated cloud cost intelligence platform like CloudZero comes in.

The CloudZero Strategy: Embrace and Extend AWS

CloudZero delivers value to engineering teams in part by embracing and extending many of the native capabilities available in AWS — from cost management offerings like cost and usage reporting and cost tags, to engineering metrics from services like Amazon CloudWatch (for example, our recent work with AWS SaaS factory team on Kubernetes cost).

AWS just announced preview availability of their AWS Cost Anomaly Detection service, and we expect to embrace and extend that, too. It’s another endorsement of the importance of machine-learning-driven automated AWS cost anomalies that we’ve offered for years. Customers who use both AWS anomaly detection and CloudZero will be able to put innovation first — with fewer disruptions, less tech debt, and in the case of cost: higher margins.

What Will You Get With CloudZero and AWS Cost Anomaly Detection?

The AWS side will let you configure monitors to watch given services, AWS accounts, cost allocation tags, and cost categories for anomalous charges. If one is detected, you can configure the monitor to send SNS or email notifications. Since many organizations have incomplete tagging and need additional ways to route notifications to the teams who need them.

CloudZero Cost Anomaly Detection Goes Further

CloudZero’s built-in cost anomaly detection for AWS goes even further by allowing you to watch for anomalous costs in other business contexts — like products and features or business units and teams.

CloudZero can also automatically route the alert notifications directly to a team’s own Slack channel. These views and alerts can surface insight to dev teams — without distracting them with what they don’t need to know about.

For example, while every engineer doesn’t need to know about each time your total EC2 bill ticks up, they will definitely want to know if the cost to run the feature they’re responsible for doubles. Amazon makes all cost data available. CloudZero delivers relevant and actionable intelligence directly to engineers about the products and features they build.

Deliver Cloud Cost Intelligence to Engineering

Once you’re set up to catch unexpected costs, the next step is building your team’s cloud cost intelligence overall. You’ll want regular feedback — via email or Slack — on which features cost the most (or least) to operate so you can make strategic decisions around prioritizing tech debt or setting prices.

For workloads running in containers orchestrated by Kubernetes, you need to combine container utilization data with your actual AWS costs to give you accurate allocation of Kubernetes costs within a cluster. And you’ll need to understand what’s driving your costs from activity in your CI/CD pipeline — GitHub commits, Jenkins jobs, anything that leads to changes that might impact cost need to be viewable in the context of the bill.

CloudZero gives you all that and more, on top of fully automated, team-specific anomaly detection.

DevOps Drives Profitable Innovation

Cloud cost isn’t just about saving money. Your fast-moving DevOps teams drive profitable innovation through products and features that efficiently scale with customer activity so you stay agile to meet increasing demand — or weather unexpected downturns.

Quickly identifying and responding to unexpected costs when they happen (not at the end of the month when the bill catches everyone off guard) is a key component of cloud cost intelligence.

When combined with visibility about the real cost of your products and features delivered straight to the teams who build them, and cost built into the SDLC, your teams will be able to take responsibility for their own profitability. AWS and CloudZero get you there.

If you’re new to CloudZero and would like to see it in action, request a demo.

Learn More About CloudZero

CloudZero is the first real-time cloud cost platform designed specifically for engineering and DevOps teams.

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