All New Aimably!
First and foremost, we welcome everyone to the new and improved Aimably website! As you may have noticed we have retooled our corporate styles and colors. We hope you find the new schema as appealing as we do and look forward to your feedback as always!
Aimably Cost Calculation
As always we endeavor to add new features to Aimably to aid customers in viewing their AWS spend data in the best way possible. Now when administrators access the Update Company page they will see a new section titled Calculations. Here you will find a drop-down that allows you to select one of two options on how Aimably should total your billing cost calculations.
As you can see in the screenshots above AWS has two methodologies for calculating your total costs in a month.
The vast majority of AWS customers use the unblended cost dataset to understand their usage. This is the cost dataset presented to you on the Bills page. It’s the default option for analyzing costs using any AWS cost analysis tools or even AWS Budgets. Unblended costs represent your usage costs on the day they are charged to you. In finance terms, they represent your costs on a cash basis of accounting. For most of you, this is the only cost dataset that you will ever need.
Viewing your amortized costs is useful in cases in which it doesn’t make sense to view your costs on the day that they were charged. Or, as many finance owners say, it’s useful to view costs on an accrual basis rather than a cash basis. This cost dataset is especially useful for those of you who have purchased AWS Reservations such as Amazon EC2 Reserved Instances.
Savings Plans and Reservations often have upfront or recurring monthly fees associated with them. As you can see in the first chart, these recurring fees are charged on the first day of the month. That can lead to a spike on one day, if you are using unblended costs as your cost dataset. When you toggle over to amortized costs, these recurring costs (as well as any upfront costs) are distributed evenly across the month.
Amortized costs are a powerful tool if you seek to gain insight into the effective daily costs associated with your reservation portfolio or are looking for an easy way to normalize cost and usage information when operating at scale.
Switching between these options will have no adverse effects and can be done at will. However, it is important to note that when changed your ill be viewing the cost data in the Aimably Detailed Spend based on the selection made. If your organization does not take advantage of AWS Reservations, then Cash Basis is for you. If you do take advantage, then Accrual Basis will help you more accurately represent your AWS spend.
Aimably Billing Totals Calculation
Administrators will take notice of another addition to the Update Company page. There is also a new checkbox titled “Change billing totals calculations to be one more day in the past”, located in the Time section.
This addition came directly from a customer discussion. AWS billing happens just past midnight ET or GMT -4. For clients geographically situated where they are GMT +1 or greater this can present a difficulty in that they are not seeing the entirety of their spend when viewing. One method to mitigate this issue is for clients in those areas to set their notification times to be in the very early AM locally. Of course, that can be counterproductive as well as disruptive. To counteract the issue this checkbox has been added so that when Aimably is calculating spend data we will look one more extra day in the past and add that to the total calculation. With this setting active clients may now resume their notifications during regular business hours and still get the properly monthly total as needed.
Please note that this change does affect both Aimably daily Pulse and Warn emails/notifications as well as our Slack notifications.
Additional Changes and Bug Fixes
As always, all software has defects that need to be corrected on an ongoing basis. Here is a list of the bug fixes we have recently released.
- An issue was found in the Detailed Spend report regarding the display of totals for member accounts. This has been corrected.
- An issue was found in the Aimably sync specific to several tenants and was remediated.
- An issue was found in the Trends page where the 60-day graph was not always displaying correctly. This has been corrected.
- An issue was found in the import of the Cost & Usage Report where files were conflicting with the same name. This has been corrected.
- An issue was found where deleted accounts were still being included in Pulse emails. This has been corrected.
- An issue was found where dates were not being displayed correctly for time zones that were GMT +1 or greater. This has been corrected.
- An issue was found with member account access errors being displayed on the Connect to AWS page. This has been corrected.