One-click Access to Usage Data for vCenter and vCloud Director

In past blog posts we’ve discussed the challenges that go with billing for cloud services.  Just to recap, they include:

  • Collection of accurate consumption and billing metrics
  • Charging for different product and service combinations
  • Different billing increments (monthly, pay-per-use, one-time charge) on a single invoice
  • Producing and sending invoices

Several MSPs we’ve talked with tell us they get around these challenges by using a fixed-pricing model for their private cloud offerings.  On the surface we certainly understand why they chose that option – it takes away the complexity of billing while saving time on the invoicing process.

The Fixed-Pricing Trap 

While a fixed-pricing model is simple, it does not remove the issues that come with lack of access to accurate usage and metering data.  This means revenue leakage and decreased margins continue to be a very real risk.  Fixed pricing does not scale well, leaving the MSP in the position of being reactionary to increases in consumption, often months after the fact.  This further opens the door to low margins, and even negative margins until a price adjustment can be implemented.

We do understand that it can be a struggle to pull accurate usage and metering information from vCloud Director and vCenter for pay-per-use billing.  However, implementing a fixed-pricing model offers less flexibility for customers, making for a less competitive offering.

Help is Available with HyAlto

To remain competitive with public cloud offerings, and those MSPs who are offering pay-per-use private cloud solutions, our HyAlto revenue-focused cloud management platform can help by providing a means to access accurate consumption data for customers with the click of a button.

At the core of HyAlto’s usage tracking is transparency. The MSP can easily view all usage & transactions for IaaS/PaaS/SaaS and XaaS services. The level of detail goes right down to the individual customer and SKU level, making it clear what to bill for.

This resolves the accuracy issue, and because the data can be fed into a downstream billing system via access to our APIs for accurate chargeback/invoicing.  This helps reduce the time spent preparing invoices.

From Simplified Billing to Business Planning

HyAlto’s detailed usage data can also be used for planning and budgeting purposes. With a clear understanding of consumption and billing, MSPs can easily track revenue and profitability.  This allows for proactive price increases (if necessary), and a view into which products and services return the greatest profits.

The historical data provided can also be leveraged for a longer-term view of growth vs. cost. Analyzing these trends can assist with future capacity and resource planning.

Ready to Move Away from Fixed-Pricing?

If you’d like to talk to us about how HyAlto can help simplify billing and invoicing for your vCenter and VCloud Director private cloud solutions, we’d love to hear from you. Contact us today and let’s get started.

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