May 16, 2024

How Amnic Brought Cloud Cost Observability to Center Stage at AWS Summit

8 min read


This week, Amnic attended AWS Summit Bengaluru where our CEO, Ankit Bhati, presented a keynote presentation about cloud cost observability. In honor of a wonderful week of collaborating with some of the industry’s finest professionals, we wanted to share some of the top learnings from the event and deep dive into our keynote presentation for those who couldn’t attend.

Cloud Cost Observability with Ankit Bhati, Amnic Co-founder & CEO

Cloud cost observability is a trend that all organizations are starting to latch onto. All business units, teams, and applications rely on cloud resources to operate on a day-to-day basis. DevOps engineers, finance departments, FinOps practitioners, and leadership teams all require insight into cloud spend, driving the evolution of cloud cost observability we’re seeing today.

Amnic’s co-founder and CEO, Ankit Bhati, is acutely aware of the complicated nature of cloud cost management and the vast swath of stakeholders. As the co-founder of Ola Cabs and one of the earliest adopters of the cloud in India, Ankit dealt with hard-to-track cloud costs and the lack of visibility and accountability around who manages these costs. 

Cloud cost observability is a philosophy for understanding the specifics around where cloud costs are generated, who’s responsible for them, and identifying ways to optimize your cloud infrastructure over time.

Four stages in the evolution of cloud costs 

Best Practices for Effective Cloud Cost Management

As the cloud continues to grow in complexity, so does the necessity for cloud cost management best practices. One of these key practices is establishing a culture of cost-consciousness within your organization.

  1. Cloud as a value driver

    Stage one of the cloud cost observability journey is when a business uses the cloud to drive faster product innovation. The cloud is viewed as a necessary cost center where engineers can quickly build applications and services and leverage IaaS, PaaS, and FaaS to improve operational efficiency.

    Leadership teams see value in cloud providers for faster collaboration across business units and product lines. Developers abstract their infrastructure from their applications and services and can ensure speed, security, and control without needing to manage an on-premises data center. At this stage in the cloud cost observability maturity journey, speed is the name of the game and everyone is focused on using this speed as a value driver.

  2. Rate Optimization

    Stage two of the cloud cost observability journey is focused on avoiding runaway spend and issues that can occur with scale. Cloud costs surge and decline based on demand and other factors such as resources or cloud service usage. This forces engineers to constantly work on tracking, reporting, and understanding their cloud costs. Simply trying to identify a pattern to how costs are rising and why they rise can be complicated and restrict an engineer’s time from focusing on building new products and features.

    At this point, the business focuses on reducing overall cloud provider costs and understanding where money is spent. Leadership teams and engineers alike have found value in the speed and transparency when building in the cloud, but have only started to understand how they can manage costs.

  3. Workload Optimization

    Once an organization understands its overall cloud costs, teams start analyzing their specific cloud spend, filtering by team, product, resource, service, and node level to take action on optimization opportunities. At this stage in the cloud cost observability journey, the company is focused on delivering a consistent, quality product to customers without wasting precious resources in their cloud environments or Kubernetes clusters.  

    Memory usage, CPU usage, network load, storage, compute, and other cloud metrics can be analyzed in line with dollars spent to find recommendations for delivering a reliable cloud-based product at a lower cost. Every cluster, node, pod, product, cloud provider, and team can be monitored and measured against its spending to find opportunities to improve. Companies at this stage are taking action on their insights and building highly cost-effective workloads in the cloud.

  4. Supply Chain Instrumentation

    The final stage of the cloud cost observability maturity model is brought on by the need to expand margins across business units, teams, and products. Not only are your technical services running smoothly but you are tying these costs back to the business and finding ways to generate more revenue or drive more users without causing a spike in cloud costs.

    Cloud cost observability is more than monitoring, managing, and optimizing your cloud infrastructure. At the end of the day, cloud cost observability is about tying these costs to business objectives and teams to understand how the business can allocate resources to keep customers happy and drive more growth.

The Core Tenets of Cloud Cost Observability

As the cloud continues to grow in complexity, so does the necessity for cloud cost management best practices. One of these key practices is establishing a culture of cost-consciousness within your organization.

  • Cost Cataloging

    Simply put, cost cataloging is the detailed tracking of all cloud costs associated with your business. The organization can track and filter all spending across clouds, teams, and product lines to understand dollars spent and cloud usage at a granular level. Having the information at your fingertips allows you to slice and dice the data in whatever way you need to drive better business decisions when managing your cloud environments.

  • Cost Debugging

    Cost can be debuggable, just like any other code or technical resource. With the right data, you can identify problems with how your services are architected on top of your cloud providers. This allows you to optimize for end-user experiences, backend technical performance, and overall cost associated with all operations. Cloud cost observability looks at debugging and troubleshooting cloud cost issues similarly to identifying and resolving incidents or errors with your applications and services.

  • Collaborative Cost Control

    Cloud cost observability shares accountability across the entire business. The FinOps team doesn’t get siloed or held responsible for all cloud costs, even if they’re out of the team’s control. Cloud cost observability brings stakeholders together from DevOps engineers to finance and leadership teams to address and solve cloud spend problems together. Managing cloud costs is a constant iteration loop, balancing cloud resource usage with end-user expectations and revenue goals. By working together closely and sharing ownership of cloud costs, the organization improves its overall efficiency and ultimately drives more successful business outcomes. 

  • Cost Governance

    Budgets and financial forecasts are more accurate with a culture of cloud cost observability. With historical data and context, collaborative organizations that have adopted the cloud cost observability model will create more accurate budgets and forecasts, helping with future planning, optimization, and scaling opportunities in the cloud. With tighter, continuous governance, leadership teams can identify cost centers and determine which teams or products create the most value for the business. 

  • Cost Allocation & Unit Economics

    The first four stages of cloud cost observability helped the team collect the data needed to determine exactly where their dollars are going and how this spend drives growth. Cost is granularly tracked based on allocation – by team, product, business unit, region, or any other organizational tactic. From there, you can analyze the unit economics of your organization to see how efficient product and engineering teams are, identify areas of improvement, drive more user growth and revenue, and help scale your business.

Why businesses are moving from cost optimization to cloud cost observability

In Ankit’s AWS Summit keynote presentation, he discussed how customers have moved from a culture of simple cost optimization to cloud cost observability. Read a few of the following quotes to understand how some industry leaders are looking at cloud cost observability:

  • “We have been able to identify root causes and make our intra-region data transfers as well as S3 bucket data management more efficient with Amnic’s platform.” - Prathamesh Juvatkar, Co-founder & CTO, Nanonets

  • “The Recommendation Engine helped us reduce our cloud bill through optimization of network and cloudwatch costs.” - Mayank Bhola, Co-founder & CTO, Lambdatest

  • “…concurrently streamlining costs through implementation of elastic scaling mechanisms and strategic utilization of spot instances.” - Piyush Jain Sr. Staff Engineer, Metamap

  • “…played a pivotal role in bringing visibility and reducing our Kubernetes cluster costs by 50% by providing precise recommendations for right-sizing instances and pods.” - Sekhar Prakash, Co-founder, Cloud Engineering and Ops,

Connected across clouds and tools

True cloud cost observability platforms will connect data from multi-cloud infrastructures and multi-SaaS tools, organize them into one simple-to-analyze view, and then offer recommendations and suggestions for improvement. Over time, the cloud cost observability platform picks up on anomalous spending in real-time, quickly alerts the appropriate team to mitigate cloud cost surges, and governs the organization to maintain compliance with budgets and forecasts.

Cloud cost observability leads to more predictable bills, optimized cloud infrastructure, and highly efficient business operations.Stay Tuned for  Ankit’s AWS Summit keynote presentation to learn more about what it takes to establish a culture of cloud cost observability within your team and business. Try out Amnic today or request a demo to see how our approach connects clouds and costs to drive insights for optimization and more successful business operations.

Summarizing AWS Summit Bengaluru Event Highlights

For those of you who attended (and even those of you who could not), you understand just how busy an AWS Summit can be. Between keynote presentations, technical demos, speaker sessions, and networking events, your agenda can be jam-packed. So, here’s a quick breakdown of some of the top sessions and announcements from the week that you and your team should be aware of:

AWS Launches Amazon Bedrock in India to help developers build and scale generative AI applications

Generative AI (GenAI) is the most popular and most innovative technology the industry has seen in years, probably since the internet’s inception. This week, at AWS Summit Bengaluru, AWS announced the launch of Amazon Bedrock in India, giving developers the tools they need to build and manage their own GenAI applications going forward. 

Amazon Bedrock is a fully managed service within AWS that provides a swath of large language models (LLMs) and machine learning model customizations and tuning capabilities. On top of the platform itself, AWS announced that it will provide customers with tools, docs, training, and other resources to help users adopt the tool and “advance responsible and secure innovation in generative AI.” 

Startup Central

Small businesses and startups using AWS had a dedicated area for information, resources, and guidance around launching and growing their business. With real-world examples, strategies, and AWS experts, startup founders were able to dive into the nitty gritty to learn how they can drive more success in their cloud journey.

Builders Zone

The Builders Zone at the AWS Summit was for the most innovative AWS users who were interested in technical demos built on AWS and showcasing some more unique use cases of the cloud provider. Here you could see demos built using GenAI services, including the brand new Amazon Bedrock, as well as Amazon Q, PartyRock, and even a Formula One AR experience.

AWS Experts & Partner Network

Outside of the organized AWS experts and AWS Partner Network, there were tons of opportunities to meet industry leaders and build your network. At the AWS Summit, you could chat with AWS partners and experts to learn how you can improve end-user experiences within your cloud services and innovate alongside other leading companies in your space.

Industry Hub

AWS offered guidance by business type and vertical at the Industry Hub, showing off specific cloud-based solutions and services to address common issues for certain kinds of organizations. Experts here would go through use cases and examples to help you address real-world business problems and help you optimize your cloud services for these concerns.

Other Keynotes and Sessions

Outside of Ankit’s session on cloud cost observability, there were 12 other keynote presentations from industry experts and leaders in FinTech, gaming, AWS, tech, banking, automotive, and more. In case you missed the event and want to catch up on any of the amazing keynotes or speaker sessions, you can find them here.

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