Managing a Growing AWS Environment
Founded in 2000, Signiant moves petabytes of high-value data every day by connecting people, systems, and the cloud. Signiant’s patented file movement solutions serve thousands of media and entertainment companies as well as life sciences researchers, financial services, nonprofits, and other enterprises performing big data analytics. The company runs their services across a variety of cloud infrastructure providers, with Amazon Web Services (AWS) being the main provider.
Early on, Signiant found tracking changes and costs of their AWS accounts manageable. That was when they only had one development account and one production account. As customer demand for their SaaS solutions grew, so did their use of cloud infrastructure.
Within months, Signiant had nine AWS accounts for various departments in the company including pre-sales, development, and production. Tracking changes, forecasting costs and monitoring for security across this many accounts became increasingly difficult and time-consuming. The DevOps team began investigating third-party solutions to help them:
- Save money by proactively managing costs across their AWS infrastructure
- Automate the purchasing on reserved instances (RIs) to optimize AWS spend
- Improve security by managing numerous changes to AWS reserved instances (RIs)
- Provide the finance team with self-service tools to obtain up-to-date costs for AWS investments
Seeing Immediate Return on Investment
After evaluating multiple potential solutions, Signiant decided to take advantage of the risk-free free trial of the CloudCheckr platform to validate that it fully met the company’s needs for managing AWS Reserved Instances (RIs) and both cost and security management.
“From the beginning it was clear that the feature set of CloudCheckr went significantly beyond that of the other applications we were looking at,” says Dave North, the Director of DevOps at Signiant. “Within the first week, the S3 reporting functionality in CloudCheckr alone revealed immediate cost savings that paid for the monthly subscription for CloudCheckr three times over. Combine that with RI tracking and cost forecasting, we had seen enough to make a purchase decision.”
Optimizing Spend Through Automated RI Purchasing
AWS offers an auto-scaling feature that adds and removes machines based on demand. Signiant developed a tool to refine their purchase decisions using data from CloudCheckr’s Reserved Instances by Frequency report to automate the purchasing of RIs based on historical resource utilization and predictive analytics sourced from the CloudCheckr platform. This empowers the DevOps team at Signiant to confidently acquire the resources needed at the most effective price point to keep costs down and resource utilization up.
“Leveraging CloudCheckr data in our own homegrown tool, we spent around $80K to purchase 165 RIs in just one minute and got an ROI of 91 percent,” North says. “CloudCheckr showed us that we’ll recoup that $80K in just five months, with the remainder of the year at a pure cost savings.”