Savings Automator

What is the Savings Automator

The Savings Automator helps you automate cost management for your cloud resources so that you can achieve your business goals and maximize cost savings. The Savings Automator helps you:

  • Set specific parameters for optimization on a per-account basis
  • Configure the tool to intelligently take actions
  • Proactively and independently optimize around the clock

Setting up the Savings Automator

The first step to using the Savings Automator is selecting accounts for optimization and ensuring they are configured correctly.

Using the Savings Automator requires the user’s role document to have permission to read, create, or update the Savings Automator. By default, both the default Administrators and Power Users role documents have read, create, and update permissions enabled. Standard Users only have the read permission enabled. If you use custom roles, you may need to enable the Savings Automator permissions for your role documents. For more information about configuring Tanzu CloudHealth Roles or FlexOrgs Role Documents, see What are Roles? and Use Role Documents to Define Permissions.

The first step to using the Savings Automator is selecting accounts for optimization and ensuring they are configured correctly. After configuring accounts, view an estimate of cost savings and recommended actions. Finally, enable automation so the tool can act on your behalf and realize cost savings.

  1. Select a billing account to optimize.
  2. Click on a billing account to view more settings for optimization:
    • Cloud Usage: Select your forecasted cloud spend and workload stability for the year
    • Commitment Preferences: Select how much commitment you are willing to make in your purchases.
      • Minimize Commitment - selects options that require less commitment, but do not provide the most cost savings. Examples of actions the Savings Automator may take with this action selected include making shorter-term commitments or using no-upfront payment options.
      • Maximize Savings - selects options that that require more commitment, but provide greater cost savings. Examples of actions the Savings Automator may take with this action selected include making long-term commitments or using all-upfront options.
      • Balance Commitment and Savings - takes a more balanced approach between commitment and cost savings. Examples of actions the Savings Automator may take with this action selected include making shorter-term commitments with all upfront payment options, or long-term commitments with no upfront payment options.
    • Upfront Budget: Select a date range and budget for new commitments. After the budget is expended, or the end date has been reached, no more purchases will be made.
  3. Select Save and View Dashboard to view estimates and recommended actions.
    • The dashboard provides an estimate of cost savings, total cost, and effective savings rate, and recommends actions that could help further reduce cost.
    • It can take up to 24 hours for the Savings Automator to recommend actions.
  4. Enable Automate recommended actions to start realizing savings. For more information about automating actions with the savings automator, see Using the Savings Automator.

Using the Savings Automator

After you have configured accounts in the Savings Automator tool, you can start realizing savings.

After you have configured accounts in the Savings Automator tool, you can start realizing savings.

The dashboard provides Estimated Total Savings, Estimated Total Cost, Estimated Effective Savings Rate, and Recommended Actions.

Recommended Actions are steps identified by the Savings Automator that you can take to start realizing savings. With automation disabled, the Savings Automator identifies Recommended Actions that you can independently act on. With automation enabled, the Savings Automator identifies Recommended Actions and autonomously acts on your behalf.

Enable or Disable Automation

Enable the Automate recommended actions toggle to allow the Savings Automator to act on your behalf for all accounts that are configured for automation.

You can disable automated actions at any time. Up to 13 months of automation data is saved after disabling automation.

Before Enabling Automation

When automation is disabled, the dashboard displays simulations as if the tool was enabled, and provides recommended actions that can help you start saving now. The dashboard provides the following estimates of cost savings if the Savings Automator automatically implemented all recommended actions:

  • Estimated Total Savings - represents the total lifetime savings opportunities that the Savings Automator has identified
  • Estimated Total Cost - how much of your budget would have been spent
  • Estimated Effective Savings Rate (ESR) - total effective discount on on-demand cost

After Enabling Automation

When automation is enabled, you can see a list of actions recently taken on the dashboard for the billing account. You can also view upcoming actions, such as renewing an expiring reserved instance.

Note: For billing accounts with multiple linked accounts, ensure that IAM permission for automation is enabled on each linked account. The Savings Automator identifies linked accounts that do not have automation permissions. For details about the permissions required to use the Savings Automator, see IAM Permissions Required to use the Savings Automator.

Click each action to view more information about usage, a detailed breakdown of savings opportunities, and justifications for each action. There are three categories of actions: reuse, boost, and merge.

  • Reuse actions - identify and exchange underused CRIs to lower on-demand cost.
  • Boost actions - reserve instances for short periods, typically between one and three months, without new long-term commitments.
  • Merge actions - modify eligible CRIs to get a higher discount over the lifetime of the CRI.

The action details page provides the following information:

  • Overview – information about the account where the action is recommended
  • Settings history – the configuration that was used to generate the recommendation
  • Supporting data – a detailed view of the recommended action. The catalyst CRI is your original CRI, and the target CRI is the new CRI that is created as a result of the action.
  • Benefits – a detailed breakdown of the cost benefits and savings associated with the exchange
  • (Reuse actions only) Previous and Forecasted Catalyst CRI Usage – Details about the historic use of the catalyst CRI, and an estimate of future use
  • (Reuse actions only) Previous and Forecasted Target CRI Usage – Details about the historic use of the new CRI, and an estimate of future use

IAM Permissions Required to use the Savings Automator

Specific IAM permissions must be enabled to use the Savings Automator.

The following IAM permissions must be granted on any linked account where you want to use the Savings Automator:

  • ec2:DescribeReservedInstances
  • ec2:DescribeReservedInstancesOfferings
  • ec2:GetReservedInstancesExchangeQuote
  • ec2:AcceptReservedInstancesExchangeQuote
  • ec2:ModifyReservedInstances
  • ec2:DescribeReservedInstancesModifications
  • iam:List*
  • iam:Get*
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