Reducing Costs and Mean Time to Resolution
When Cradit signed Burns & McDonnell up for a Conformity trial, he received a full report with cloud security recommendations and opportunities for cost efficiency in just 20 minutes, rather than waiting days for the results. To generate data-rich reports, Conformity scans an organization’s cloud infrastructure and scores it against approximately 800 best practices, including the design principles outlined in the AWS Well-Architected Framework. This approach enables customers to evaluate their architecture based on the AWS Well-Architected Framework’s pillars of operational excellence, security, reliability, performance efficiency, and cost optimization. Conformity rapidly sorts the results according to the risk level of each misconfiguration.
Every recommendation in the report links to Conformity’s knowledge base, which describes how to remediate it using the AWS Management Console—a web interface where users can manage their AWS accounts—or command line interface. Conformity customers also get frequent updates on new configuration checks within the application and new cloud services best practices.
Burns & McDonnell immediately used the visibility and contextual insights Conformity produced. “We saved about 30 percent of our overall AWS bill in the first week by taking action,” says Cradit. “We drastically reduced waste by identifying whether any instances were overprovisioned.” By using Conformity to better adhere to the AWS Well-Architected Framework, Burns & McDonnell has reduced its AWS bill by 30 percent year over year. In addition, it’s seen a 50 percent reduction in mean time to resolution when using Conformity’s knowledge base and step-by-step guides to implement recommendations.
Using the AWS Well-Architected Framework and Conformity in tandem has given Burns & McDonnell freedom to innovate and gain new customers by saving time and money. “When we save money, we can spend it elsewhere and explore new things. That helped us win a large utility contract because we were able to reuse our funds to help that customer,” says Cradit. “Likewise, by building efficiencies into our practice, we have more time to explore. We don’t have to worry about micromanaging our infrastructure because we’ve delegated that to Conformity.” In addition, Cradit says sharing Burns & McDonnell’s cloud assessment reports with customers provides transparency into its cloud environment, giving customers peace of mind. Using Conformity also helps Burns & McDonnell comply with many regulatory requirements, such as the North American Electric Reliability Corporation Critical Infrastructure Protection standards that energy and utility customers must adhere to.
Developers at Burns & McDonnell have more freedom to innovate because of the guardrails Conformity provides. The application has also been useful for training purposes. “The daily active user count has gone up,” says Cradit. “More people can build without the worry of a data breach or similar fears. For people who don’t have a lot of experience, it provides a great educational mechanism because when you want to resolve an issue, it walks you through the step-by-step procedure to get you there. One team member just passed the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate test, and he attributes a lot of that to using Conformity.”