University of California, San DIEGO

One of the top research universities in the US needed to identify cloud cost-saving opportunities in order to grow its accounts.

Strategic Blue Helps the University of California San Diego Maximise Their Cloud Budget

Strategic Blue works with the University of California San Diego (UC San Diego) to provide clarity, flexibility, and savings on its migration to Amazon Web Services (AWS). UC San Diego is one of the world’s top 15 research universities, managing more than $1 billion in annual research funding. The university serves more than 30,000 undergraduate and 8,000 graduate students. Like many educational institutions, UC San Diego found cloud procurement to be complex and challenging to optimize. With a vast range of enterprise and research workloads, cloud costs and utilization became increasingly difficult to control and manage.

As it accelerated its use of cloud technology, UC San Diego needed centralized management, security guardrails, and cost optimization campus-wide, while still allowing researchers necessary operational independence. Starting in 2017, UC San Diego worked with Strategic Blue to achieve these goals. Today, UC San Diego has more than 100 AWS accounts consuming cloud resources through Strategic Blue

Unifying the Environment through Enticing Savings

Working with Strategic Blue has paid off significantly for UC San Diego. On average, UC San Diego saves more than $10,000 per month using Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) Reserved Instances and Savings Plans. Strategic Blue’s portfolio management and cost-saving expertise has allowed UC San Diego to reinvest savings in research, innovation, and modernization, as well as reduce the financial risk associated with a complex and growing cloud portfolio.

At UC San Diego, increasing cloud adoption already helps save money through waivers on indirect costs (IDCs). Universities typically take a portion of grants as IDCs for providing infrastructure and resources, but when researchers use AWS at UC San Diego, they can avoid these costs on the computing portions of their grants. The financial engineering provided by Strategic Blue drives costs down further, helping researchers spend more of their budgets on their work. 

Additionally, researchers generally want to save money to stretch their finite grants further. With centralized billing and chargebacks, they can. “It’s basically a no-brainer for researchers because cloud billing is not an area of expertise most researchers have time or inclination to get involved in,” says DeMeulle. “Researchers want to spend their time on their projects. Strategic Blue makes it easy to show researchers where their cloud spend is going and help them make the most of it.”

Innovating Cloud Procurement for Research and Development

Strategic Blue may simplify billing and financial management, but that doesn’t mean it takes a hands-off approach. The company works closely with UC San Diego on an ongoing basis to drive continued cost savings and transparency. UC San Diego has regular calls with Strategic Blue to discover additional savings opportunities. In fact, UC San Diego recently hired a cloud financial analyst who collaborates with Strategic Blue on a weekly and sometimes daily basis.

Recently, UC San Diego’s relationship with Strategic Blue has developed significantly. For example, Strategic Blue was part of a National Science Foundation grant won by UC San Diego, UC Berkeley, and the University of Washington to establish CloudBank—a service that helps the computer-science community access and use public clouds for research and education by delivering a set of managed services designed to meet stringent compliance requirements. It’s one more example of how Strategic Blue is helping UC San Diego do what it does best: educate, discover, and innovate.

Unlock Maximum Cloud Savings Today.

Strategic Blue understands the financial pressures that everyone is currently facing, and want to help as many organisations as possible to unlock the most value from their cloud budgets.

According to McKinsey, 30% of cloud spend is wasted, 23% of cloud spend is over budget and cloud spend is expected to grow by 47% in the next year. Strategic Blue is here to help you gain complete control so you’re not wasting money.

The Strategic Blue portal provides you with a personalised analysis of your cloud spend, allowing you to see exactly what you could save on the cloud. This analysis is completely free, with no strings attached. All you need to do is follow a few simple steps to get started.