Amazon Web Services has brought undeniable benefits to modern computing, but the model has challenged numerous traditional notions of IT procurement.
One particularly troublesome area has been chargeback, as AWS tools make it difficult to split out costs across a business. Other aspects of cloud management, such as the visibility of risk, spend, security or the quality of its cloud deployments, can also be somewhat opaque.
This was a problem that leading AWS partner Versent set out to solve.
The result was Stax, which has been subsequently spun out to form its own company. Today Stax is sold via the AWS marketplace, through distributor Tech Data and its resellers, and directly to clients.
A free Basic version allows customers to see their full cost breakdown in detail, while a Premium version gives customers more insight into their wastage and compliance, for the cost of 2 percent of their AWS spend per month.
One of the first organisations to take on Stax was Australia’s leading car website, Carsales.
After moving to AWS for the first time, Carsales realised it was lacking an holistic view of what was occurring within the organisation, and didn't know what employees were doing in AWS or how they were doing it.
Stax was evaluated as a viable tool to solve Carsales' AWS challenges. It was onboarded to Carsales and within two months, and was able to demonstrate value through cost reduction, visibility of AWS usage, and optimising industry best practices for cloud.
Having been successfully implemented at Carsales, new features were created to solve additional AWS challenges.
For example, Carsales needed a tool that could analyse cloud wastage. Stax provided a custom view of all AWS usage, to each Carsales group or project, which meant up to 50 different developers working on separate projects were able to report the compliance, risk, financial and health of their specific project without generating additional, irrelevant information. Today, these developers are now completely accountable for their AWS spend, usage, compliance and wastage.
The senior development manager at Carsales, Michael Ridgeway, said the development of Stax had been a learning exercise for both parties.
“Being a greenfield project, we managed to work with Stax to customise the solution as needed,” Ridgeway said.
“Stax helped us to build features that were useful to our company. This allowed us actionable insights to our business needs. Having a clear and complete picture of cost, security, compliance, and best practice is key for us.”
Stax is a finalist in the 'Evolving Innovator' category in the 2018 CRN Impact Awards. For a list of all finalists and further details on the awards, please head to the CRN Impact Awards hub. The awards take place during the CRN Pipeline conference. You can get more information and purchase tickets here.