Harness, a startup that has been concentrating on building a continuous delivery as a service offering, added a new wrinkle this week. It announced a way to track public cloud spending in real time to help control cloud infrastructure costs.

Once upon a time, a developer needed to file a help desk ticket to procure new infrastructure resources. Typically that could take weeks or even months to fill the order. When companies were taking months or years to update software, that was fine.

Today, as companies move to a continuous delivery model where updates can happen much more frequently, it doesn’t work if developers are sitting around waiting for approval for additional resources. The public cloud has helped solve this problem by making it simple to procure what they need.

But that has raised another set of issues around cloud spending. How can finance and engineering control cloud spending when it’s so easy to order cloud resources? As a result, companies often spend much more than they need.

Vendors to the rescue

Harness’s Continuous Efficiency tool allows engineers (or you as an MSP) to get a view of cloud spending and see what resources are going unused. You can then choose to shut down those resources and save the money you were spending on them.

With cloud infrastructure, it’s a simple matter to shut them off, but you need to be sure you don’t need them first. Harness gives you that kind of visibility into what you’re using or what is being wasted.

Spot came out with a similar cloud infrastructure cost monitoring tool in March, although the startup has since been acquired by NetApp.

Other vendors like Blissfully and Intello help you track your SaaS spending in a similar fashion to services that might be underutilized. At a time when many companies are slashing budgets, you could be a hero for your clients by finding ways for them to save money.

If they are buying subscriptions or infrastructure they aren’t using, shutting those down is low hanging fruit when it comes to helping cut costs, and if you have the right tools, you can help them find waste much more easily.

Photo: ra2 studio / Shutterstock

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Posted by Ron Miller

Ron Miller is a freelance technology reporter and blogger. He is contributing editor at EContent Magazine and enterprise reporter at TechCrunch.

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