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FinOps. How to automate financial operations in the right way?

Cloud Financial Management - FinOps

Automation is both a life savior and the biggest headache to specialists dealing with accounting, bookkeeping, and other financial operations.

While there is no discussion that automation can improve the workflow dramatically, doing it the right way is not always easy.

That’s where FinOps come in and offer smart, fast, and reliable IT solutions for automation.

FinOps stands for “Cloud Financial Operations” (sometimes FinOps can also be referred to as “Cloud Financial Management” or “Cloud Cost Management”), and it encompasses the practice of bringing financial accountability to the variable spend model of the cloud.

In turn, this practice enables distributed teams to make business trade-offs between speed, cost, and quality.

To see how to use FinOps in your daily business life, we’ll take a closer look at some of the best FinOps practices.

The best FinOps practices

In short, there are a few main FinOps strategies that you could implement in your business to see a positive change in financial accountability:

  • Make optimization of your cloud costs a priority. That is the fastest way to avoid unnecessary spendings in the short and long term.
  • Introduce accountability in the spendings. Track where the company’s money is going to – who is spending it and on what products or services.
  • Rationalize spendings. By getting the insights on where the money is flowing, make sure you set up a plan that will help you rationalize spending so that no money is wasted.
  • Choose the right SaaS accounting software. Doing so will make financial operations much easier.

Tips on automating financial processes with FinOps

Apply the tips mentioned below, and introduce more automation to your business:

1. Tag Governance

Tagging is a crucial practice for businesses that opt to implement effective chargeback and showback.

However, you must keep in mind that tagging only works if everyone adheres to a global tagging policy. Meaning, all assets within the company should be tagged with the same:

  • keys;
  • values;
  • as well as – the same format.

Lastly, using tags is a sure way to identify your resources. You can observe which tags are missing, which ones are applied incorrectly, and more.

Next, you can stop or block policy for those resources and delete them altogether in most severe cases. 

2. Scheduling resources

Another thing you could do is scheduling the start and end of the resources.

For instance, you can stop the resources when you are out of the office and schedule them back for when you return. 

3. Usage Reduction

Usage reduction alerts the responsible employees to remove any waste from the databases.

More often than not, usage reduction is very hard to implement for most businesses. To do that, a commitment to a minimum level of usage is needed at the whole company’s level.

Remember that even if your company decides not to proceed with this step, the previously mentioned practices (tag governances and scheduling resources) will already help take a big leap towards automation.

Bottom line

If there is one message you’ll take from this article, let it be this one – FinOps is a cultural practice that teams use to manage their cloud costs.

Therefore, it’s key to have an agreement and commitment to move together towards automating financial tasks, using some of the best practices mentioned in this article.

While in the beginning, the shift may look hard, the results are rewarding.

FinOps, if correctly applied, will help to introduce more efficiency and optimization to any business.