Channel technologies, CSPs, Enterprise

IBM Intros Cloud Cost Management Tools

As companies scale, they can end up with multiple cloud environments. Three of every four enterprises have already implemented more than one cloud, IBM claims. Managing and tracking the cost of these environments across various platforms can be challenging.

To help customers deal with this problem IBM has announced a new application called Cloud Brokerage Services Cost and Asset Management. Insanely long descriptive name aside, it does seem to offer some beneficial features.

Cloud Brokerage Services Cost and Asset Management provides clients the means to:

  • Obtain nearly ongoing visibility into their cloud inventory and view current and projected costs, and track according to budgets along with accurate chargeback
  • Establish and enforce governance control points using financial and technical policy templates that incorporate cloud best practices and IBM expertise
  • Receive information about and be able to proactively respond to variances and deviations before they become problems
  • Review insights and recommendations on potential cost savings provided by the application's analytics
  • Simulate changes to inventory, spend goals and operational priorities
  • Manage asset & cost policies and changes supported by tagging across multiple provider services and monitored through universal dashboard vs individual reports

IBM Cloud Cost Management Use Cases

There are streamlined dashboards for finance and IT personnel to provide one system of reference for hybrid cloud governance. A few of the key functions that will be included in the dashboard are total cost and cost trends, budget tracking, policy compliance, asset location and asset types that drive spending. Companies can add to their hybrid cloud transformation by aligning governance, consumption, operations, and delivery across several different providers.

The growth of cloud portfolios in enterprises requires an agnostic cloud management platform—one that not only provides automation, provisioning, and orchestration, but that also monitors trends and usage to prevent outages. The Cost & Asset Management Application is the latest addition to IBM's Hybrid Cloud management offerings, which helps companies continue their hybrid cloud transformation by making it easier to manage resources across a variety of cloud platforms, the company claims.

More Cloud Cost Management Tools

A growing list of cloud cost management tools specifically target MSPs and channel partners. Key brands to know include Unigma (recently acquired by Kaseya), CloudynCloudMGRCloudCheckr and CloudAbility.

Plenty of channel partners already offer vendor management services to customers. Cloud billing management seems like a natural extension. But so far, many partners say they're not quite sure if or when they'll offer cloud billing management, according to private MSP meetings with ChannelE2E this week.

Additional insights from Joe Panettieri.