Ascend Technologies is a 24X7, high-access service provider. We manage infrastructure for our clients, provide application support and development, security management, service desk and NOC.
As more clients move to the public cloud, we wanted to provide value add services beyond just basic support. We reviewed several platforms focused on cloud cost management and settled on CloudCheckr.
CloudCheckr features fit our needs
First, the ability to reduce costs on clients’ infrastructure was compelling. Often, we’re supporting technology environments for mid-sized organizations. For those clients, reducing infrastructure costs can have a notable impact on profitability. CloudCheckr enables us to quickly review a client environment and make recommendations based on workloads. We can get trending information and be proactive on shifting environment resources as needed. Engaging with clients at this level shift the dialogue from straight up break/fix support to more business focused technology management.
Another important feature for us are the best practice checks. Public cloud providers, and particularly AWS, have recommended configurations to get the most value, security, and usability from their platforms. Some of these checks include database security rules, permissions on storage, and data encryption. These checks are a key feature of CloudCheckr. When we onboard a new environment, we load their account information into the tool, and can quickly get a list of tasks our team needs to perform to ensure adherence to the provider’s best practices.
As a managed services provider with a portfolio of financial services and healthcare clients, CloudCheckr’s compliance checks are a differentiator. We have clients in the financial services and healthcare and life sciences industries. CloudCheckr has over 35 frameworks embedded in the tool. If a client is looking to be PCI or HIPAA compliant, or wants to align to a security framework like NIST, the tool tells us where they’re compliant, where they’re not, and what actions need to be taken to achieve compliance.
In short, we can leverage the features in the tool to help us differentiate ourselves in an increasingly crowded market.
Our team is more effective
Beyond the features, a big selling point for us was the recommended actions when an alert is created. Many of our clients still rely heavily on physical infrastructure. As we bring on junior resources, the bulk of their initial exposure to many of our clients is through break/fix related to physical infrastructure. CloudCheckr enables us to empower more junior resources to support cloud environments because alerts generated in CloudCheckr also come with detailed explanation for what to do to remediate the alert. This effectively extends our team and ‘up-skills’ our capabilities as those team members shift from more traditional infrastructure support to cloud support.
What’s next for our team, and how can CloudCheckr help us get there?
As we continue to grow our practice, we’re exploring opportunities to expand our offerings. We’re looking at how CloudCheckr might help enable that growth. We’re beginning the process to become an AWS End User Solution Provider, which would enable us to resell AWS services to our clients.
In addition, we are looking at how environment security and compliance can expand our managed security services offerings. Often, compliance with a certain framework or standard requires a major focus on security. We’re exploring how on premise, data center focused security initiatives dovetail with the security information provided by the platform.
In the end, it comes down to how an organization uses a tool to determine how effective it can be. I’m eager to see how the tool evolves in automation and additional compliance frameworks. Given our circumstances, the features provided along with the detailed information and additional context about alerts and notifications make CloudCheckr the go to for us at this point in our practice development. If you have additional questions or are interested in learning more about our managed services offering, feel free to reach out.