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Protiviti Australia, a leading consulting firm and solutions provider, has partnered with Apptio to help customers tackle challenges around cost management as they continue to transform their businesses and address the growing need for efficiencies and complete control over costs. It will deliver this through a FinOps-as-a-Service holistic managed service, underpinned by Apptio technology.

In the partnership, Protiviti will deliver and manage Apptio’s Cloudability solution and IT financial management platform ApptioOne, with a goal of providing businesses with a highly detailed view of their IT and cloud investments, enabling cost reduction and ultimately driving enhanced value from technology spending.

According to Alexander Setchin, Managing Director for Enterprise Cloud and Technology Consulting at Protiviti Australia, this boosts Protiviti’s ability to deliver a comprehensive managed service to its customers.

“Protiviti not only provides skilled professionals but also leverages advanced tools and enforces effective governance practices to deliver a thorough end-to-end service,” he said. “With Protiviti’s FinOps solution, businesses can confidently navigate the complexities of cloud cost management, knowing they have a dependable partner offering the expertise and resources needed to enhance efficiency and financial performance in their cloud environment.”

Flexibility Is the Key to Managed Services Success

As Setchin noted, Australian service providers are going through a period of deep change, and adaptability and flexibility are key to resilience. “MSPs are becoming more versatile in their approach,” Setchin said. “In the context of cloud services, MSPs now offer flexible models that cater to a range of client needs. These models span from initial advisory services, aimed at identifying potential cost savings, all the way to complete outsourcing of cloud resources and financial management. This adaptability allows MSPs to provide tailored solutions that precisely align with their client’s requirements and objectives.”

This need for flexibility mirrors the experience that the MSP’s customers are going through, as an increasingly dynamic and challenging market disrupts all business models.

“Australian companies are facing relentless headwinds, leaving them to juggle competing business priorities, navigate complex digital transformations including the introduction of advanced technologies such as AI, all the while trying to control their cloud and broader technology spend as budgets tighten,” Marie Nalty, Channel and Alliances Lead for Asia-Pacific at Apptio, said. “This partnership will put joint customers in a stronger position to weather the storm and divert funds to where it really matters.”

However, as Setchin noted, those organisations that are able to cut through and achieve this level of flexibility are well-positioned, despite the economic climate.

“Many organisations have embarked on ambitious transformation programs designed to re-architect their applications to fully exploit cloud-native services,” he said. “This approach represents a fundamental rethinking of how applications are designed, developed, and operated, with an emphasis on harnessing the unique advantages offered by cloud-native technologies. By doing so, organisations are striving to not only modernise their IT infrastructure but also to position themselves competitively in an ever-evolving, digitally-driven business landscape where innovation and efficiency are critical.”

MSPs Need to Understand the Criticality of Costs

Despite the market uncertainty and challenging economic conditions, managed service providers are well-placed to find business because though budgets are tightening, enterprises are willing to spend on the right solutions and partners.

However, as Setchin noted, regardless of what services MSPs deliver (security, for example, is another area that is in high demand), ultimately cost control needs to be at the centre of the MSP’s offering. The cost control features of FinOps-as-a-Service have made it a particularly attractive proposition to customers.

“Waste materialises when resources are underutilised, left running unnecessarily, or allocated inefficiently, resulting in a significant inflation of cloud-related expenses. To address these challenges, the implementation of FinOps becomes imperative. FinOps serves as the foundation for establishing a cost management framework, including an operational model, organisational skills and capabilities, financial management practices, and comprehensive reporting processes,” he said.

“Our approach includes various resources, advanced tools, and strong governance practices to deliver a full-service solution that achieves savings of over 30% on cloud costs. We kickstart this process with an initial Proof of Value stage, where we quickly identify potential savings in cloud expenses. This leads to a solid business case, and after approval, a modest investment is made to establish a complete FinOps setup, covering people, processes, governance, and the use of cloud financial management tools.”

The partnership between Protiviti and Apptio is a good example of a services provider finding the right vendor partner that addresses a real need in the market. For all the talk of innovation and transformation, the reality is that for the short and medium term, efficiency is going to be the main priority of executives, and with this partnership, Protiviti has doubled down on assisting customers in achieving this.