IBM's recently acquired Apptio software division announced several new product launches at its annual TBM Conference taking place this week in Austin, Texas, to help organizations better manage and optimize their technology investments.
IBM completed its acquisition of Apptio on Aug. 10, in a deal valued at $4.6 billion. Apptio is in the business of technology business management (TBM).
At the TBM Conference, Apptio announced Apptio Cost Management, a new IT financial management product designed to help organizations just getting started on their journey toward cost transparency.
In addition, Apptio is launching new tools to improve planning and forecasting for cloud and labor costs:
- Cloudability Financial Planning brings Apptio's forecasting expertise to cloud budgeting, helping teams collaborate and align on spend forecasts.
- Targetprocess Labor Financial Management is a service that leverages visibility from Apptio's project management tool Targetprocess to provide better insights into labor allocation and spending.
Apptio also revealed new integration between its Cloudability product and IBM Turbonomic. By combining data on cloud optimization from Turbonomic — a performance and cost optimization platform for public, private, and hybrid clouds — with Cloudability's cost analysis, joint customers can maximize cloud efficiency and cost savings.
How Apptio Cost Management Aims to Help Improve IT
Eugene Khvostov, chief product officer at Apptio, explained to ITPro Today that Apptio Cost Management is an entirely new service, built on top of existing Apptio technology.
"We completely reimagined the customer experience and focused on delivering a new, more simplified model for allocating costs and managed services that simplify a new customer's onboarding and ongoing management," Khvostov said.
There are a number of specific pain points that the new service has been designed to address. For those getting started, a critical factor is time to insights — how long it takes for an organization to start getting reports and insights that it can act on, Khvostov explained.
To help accelerate that process, Apptio Cost Management has integrated a set of out-of-the-box reports and a prescriptive onboarding process. The new service includes a simplified data model that translates tech costs up to the application, product, service, and business unit level, he said. Khvostov also noted that Apptio Cost Management includes a new Workbench that allows users to adjust cost allocations.
All told, Apptio can now get customers meaningful insights in 30 days, he said.
Cloudability and Turbonomic Integrations Boost IT Cost Capabilities
The Cloudability tools can help organizations when looking specifically at cloud costs.
Khvostov explained that the new Cloudability Financial Planning tool enables cloud leaders to create accurate workload-based forecasts. The new tool is intended to replace disjointed, manual processes with technology that automates cross-functional collaboration and increases planning agility and confidence in cloud budgets.
"This enables organizations to rapidly respond to changes while driving team accountability for budget targets," he said.
As part of the Apptio update there is also new integration with IBM's Turbonomic. Khvostov said the initial technical integration between Cloudability and IBM Turbonomic enables joint customers to surface two key metrics from the Turbonomic Developer Dashboard in Cloudability: Necessary Investments and Potential Savings. He noted that those two metrics will help provide a common data set that can be used to showcase where to invest more and optimize costs.
At this point, there isn't a single unified dashboard for cost management across the Apptio, Cloudability, and Turbonomic products, but it is in development for the 2024 release, according to Khvostov.
About the authorSean Michael Kerner is an IT consultant, technology enthusiast and tinkerer. He consults to industry and media organizations on technology issues.