Navigating the FinOps Landscape: Lessons from the FinOps X Conference

Our recent attendance at the FinOps X conference in San Diego provided a valuable and enlightening experience. Immersed in the dynamic world of FinOps, the event featured engaging conversations with thought leaders, insightful talks and abundant networking opportunities. It proved to be an enriching experience that not only broadened our perspectives but also presented us with new avenues for growth and exploration.

The conference attracted an impressive turnout of 1,200 participants, which was three times (3x) higher than the previous year, marking the largest gathering of FinOps professionals to date. The organizers succeeded in securing 150 speakers from companies like Walmart, Apple, Disney, and JPMorgan Chase. The conference was not just for the experts, but newcomers too. It was about helping everyone grow their skills, not just selling tech.

Over the years, the FinOps community has grown exponentially, forming a global family of 11,000 members across 111 countries. A noteworthy statistic highlights the community’s significance, with nine out of the top ten Fortune companies participating in the FinOps Foundation programs. These programs have successfully trained a total of 13,000 individuals, with 6,500 earning professional certifications. Additionally, the conference displayed a commitment to inclusivity through its scholarship program, which awarded $350,000 in support. Further reinforcing the commitment to growth, the event introduced a jobs board to address the rising demand in the expanding FinOps job market.

During the conference, we heard an interesting story from HSBC’s exec, Natalie Daley. She shared the bank’s rollercoaster ride over the last four years to upgrade their FinOps game. After their cloud use spiked by 400% in the first year, they decided it was time to get serious about managing their cloud costs and multi-cloud strategy. She shared how they nurtured their FinOps team, made everything transparent, and got everyone to join in. Even as they moved forward, they tied FinOps optimization with cutting down carbon emissions, matching their sustainability goals.

Breakout sessions allowed us to delve deeper into specific FinOps topics, one of which, titled “Advanced Approach to Prepay Amortization and Rate Blending,” proved especially valuable for our work at Alphaus. We’re currently integrating this feature into our FinOps Enabler tool, OCTO. This enhancement aims to augment our existing ‘True Unblended’ feature by allowing enterprises to equitably distribute savings benefits across a diverse range of usage types.

The conference also proved to be an exceptional networking opportunity, enabling fruitful conversations with potential clients, industry peers, and seasoned professionals. This firsthand exchange provided a comprehensive overview of the prevailing trends and developments within the FinOps landscape.

Key Takeaways:

1. FinOps is a big deal: As businesses are moving to the cloud, getting good at FinOps is a must, not just a nice-to-have.

2. Cloud Complexity: The keynote talked about how managing and optimizing cloud costs can be tricky. Understanding these complexities is step one to manage cloud costs effectively.

3. Unit Economics: FinOps is not just about cutting costs; it’s about upping profits. Costs don’t tell the whole story unless you see the value they create. This backs our strategy.

4. Be Transparent: There was a lot of talk about the need for transparency. This goes hand in hand with our aim to make cost visibility a key feature in OCTO, our new product.

5. Automation’s Role: There was a mention of how automation/AI can help reduce mistakes, save time, and boost accuracy in FinOps.

6. Tagging is key: The topic of tagging came up a lot, especially its role in making multi-cloud cost visibility easy.

7. Teamwork is a Must: They stressed the need for finance, IT, and business units to work together for FinOps success.

8. Future Trends: The keynote also talked about what’s next in FinOps, like machine learning, predictive analytics, and the impact of the newly announced FOCUS project on cloud billing data standardization. We are grateful for the opportunity to participate as one of the contributors in the development of FOCUS.

Overall, the FinOps X conference provided valuable insights and invaluable connections, affirming the importance of FinOps in today’s cloud-dominated landscape. We are grateful for the opportunity to have participated and are excited to apply these learnings to further enhance our FinOps solutions at Alphaus.

Author

  • Mohd Atasha Alias (LinkedIn)
  • Regional Director (APEJ) at Alphaus Cloud

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