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Multi-Dimensional Budgets How To Use CloudZero Budgets Rethinking Budgets Getting Started

The best budgets aren’t roadblocks. They’re guardrails: boundaries for quick, collaborative work.

Historically, when finance and engineering teams have discussed cloud cost, they’ve run into an obstacle: They don’t speak the same language. At the end of each month, finance gets an ever-changing cloud bill, and engineering explains that, whatever the total, it represents what they need to do their work. Stalemate.

CloudZero emerged as a visibility platform — a way for finance teams to attribute portions of total cloud cost to specific teams, functionalities, customers, and more. Greater visibility means clearer communication: less cluttered pathways between organizations’ left brain and right brain.

The CloudZero Platform is built around a core feature called Dimensions, which allows customers to organize their AWS bills into whatever way makes sense for their business, at as granular a level as they want.

But a number of customers asked us to take it a step further. Could we build a solution that would let them track, in real time, inter-Dimensional costs against budgetary forecasts?

Today, we’re excited to announce the launch of CloudZero Budgets, a new functionality which allows our customers to set and track budgets against any and all Dimensions. A far cry from the undefined, lump-sum bills of old, CloudZero Budgets allow companies to see how much they’re spending, what they’re spending it on, and whether it tracks with their business goals.

Multi-Dimensional Budgets

Rather than an inflexible set of parameters, Dimensions let customers define areas of cloud spend however they choose, and craft budgets according to specific business objectives.

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With Dimensions, customers can track by individual business units, products within specific business units, products that roll up to specific general managers, geographical regions … the possibilities are quite literally endless.

At the beginning of each year, companies set fixed financial budgets. But a lot changes in the span of a year — not to mention a quarter, a month, a week. So, companies complement the initial yearly forecast with variable forecasts on a monthly/quarterly basis.

CloudZero Budgets give companies the power to track cloud spend against both fixed yearly budgets and variable monthly/quarterly forecasts. Dimensions give team leaders the real-time view: At any moment, they can determine which business units are over/under budget, which teams within business units are over/under budget, and which product features are driving those trends.

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But more than that, CloudZero Budgets send automatic Slack alerts to corresponding teams about how they’re performing against their budgets. If they’re tracking to go over, they get a Slack alert. Rather than reacting to a bill at the end of the month, CloudZero Budgets let teams make proactive, in-the-moment decisions about whether to change their approach.

Slack Alerts

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How To Use CloudZero Budgets

Within CloudZero Budgets, customers set a “View” — a static view of any Dimension or grouping of Dimensions. Customers could View individual development teams (“Dev Team 1 View”), research and development operations (“R&D View”), or specific features (“Live Chat Bot View”). They connect spend with the people responsible for it.

After setting up a View, customers establish the View’s budget. Each budget shows up on a dashboard, where customers can track how spend compares to budgetary forecasts.

Examples of ways to use CloudZero Budgets:

  •   Track the cost of a new product launch
  •   Track the costs of individual dev teams
  •   Track the cost of running different product features
  •   Track each of your customers’ costs, and receive alerts when their margins get thin
  •   Track costs of different business units

Rethinking Budgets

Some people view budgets as roadblocks — uncrossable thresholds that hamper progress. We believe budgets can and should be used to track progress, enable proactivity, and hold people accountable.

Well-defined cloud spend budgets show engineering teams the financial consequences of different approaches, and give finance teams a clear sense of how engineering teams operate. They replace guesswork with data, and substitute failure to communicate with a common vocabulary.

CloudZero Budgets is a real-time solution giving unprecedented insight into cloud spend trends. It transforms budgets from roadblocks into guardrails: a way to trigger productive strategy conversations within and beyond individual teams.

Getting Started

Want to experience CloudZero Budgets yourself? to get started.