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Cloud cost optimization has long been a daunting challenge, and as cloud usage continues to surge, it's expected to persist. Enter Cloud FinOps, a relatively recent concept in the industry that has emerged as a game-changer, providing a sigh of relief for business leaders. What was once considered a headache is now transforming into a cultural practice within organizations. FinOps doesn't just save on cloud costs; it fosters financial accountability and amplifies the business value of cloud services by fostering collaboration among engineering, finance, and business teams. This collaborative approach not only helps in optimizing expenses but also ensures a more seamless and efficient FinOps strategy, allowing business leaders to rest easier at night.

As businesses expand and innovation continues to drive growth, the trajectory of cloud usage is set to climb even higher. The inherent dynamism of the cloud makes it even more important to control costs from spiraling out of control. Hence, the future seems promising for Cloud FinOps, positioning it as a critical business priority in 2024.

Here are some changes that are bound to happen in the Cloud FinOps industry going forward:

AI Dominance in Cloud Cost Analytics: We witnessed the significant disruption caused by generative AI in 2023, and its integration into cost analytics tools seems inevitable. FinOps companies will start integrating  Generative AI into their platforms to simplify data, providing actionable insights, and even offering predictions and optimization suggestions at the click of a button.

Decentralized FinOps: The traditional centralization of FinOps and cloud cost management will undergo a shift towards decentralization. Empowering individual teams to control their cloud resource costs promotes better accountability, resource optimization, and ultimately higher cost efficiencies.

Managing Costs Across Diverse Environments: The existence of multiple cloud providers, each with its unique pricing model and billing system, will push organizations to adopt platforms that offer a unified view of costs across diverse environments, accompanied by enhanced tracking and analytics tools.

Intersection of FinOps and Security: As Cloud FinOps becomes increasingly complex, the risk of abnormal spending patterns or unauthorized activities will rise. In 2024, Cloud FinOps will focus more on quickly identifying and addressing these security issues to prevent financial losses and maintain financial integrity.

Integration of Sustainability: Even AWS acknowledges the environmental implications of FinOps by adding sustainability as the sixth pillar of its Well-Architected Framework. Organizations will need to actively measure and optimize the environmental impact of their FinOps strategy.

To unlock a successful career in Cloud FinOps in this changing environment, you’ll not only need to possess technical skills but will also possess a holistic understanding of the product life cycle, efficient resource allocation, focus on relevant KPIs, and even strategic use of automation. Additionally, enrolling in FinOps certifications and training offered by Industry bodies like the FinOps Foundation can significantly enhance your skills and open up various career opportunities in the cloud computing field. 

Here are some recommended options along with details on how such courses can benefit you:

1.FinOps Certified Practitioner: 

FinOps Certified PractitionerAbout the Certification:

The FinOps Certified Practitioner certification is designed for professionals in cloud, finance, FinOps consulting, and technology roles, providing validation of FinOps knowledge and enhancing professional credibility. This certification provides fundamental knowledge of FinOps concepts, which is crucial for understanding the lifecycle phases of Inform, Optimize, and Operate. It’ll ensure you have a basic understanding of major cloud providers which is essential in the cloud industry.

Recommended Prerequisites:

  • Understand the basics of how cloud computing works and know the key services of your cloud providers.
  • Be able to describe the basic value proposition of running in the cloud and understand the core concept of using a pay-as-you-go consumption model.
  • A base level of knowledge of at least one of the three main public cloud providers - AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud. 

Who’s it for:
Designed for individuals planning to join a FinOps team, support Cloud FinOps or cloud financial management, or provide support to FinOps teams as consultants, vendors, or trainers. 

Cost: Self-paced - $599

2. FinOps Certified Engineer 

FinOps Certified Engineer

About the Certification:

The FinOps Certified Engineer course delves into FinOps concepts, concluding with a certification exam for Engineer status. This certification emphasizes the role of an engineer enabling them to operationalize cloud infrastructure with FinOps, showcasing their ability to contribute effectively.

Who’s it for:
Engineers handling public cloud solutions and Infrastructure. This course emphasizes operationalizing cloud infrastructure with FinOps, showcasing their ability to contribute effectively to cloud financial management without being the primary FinOps practitioner. 

Cost: $699

3. FinOps Certified Professional 

finops certified professional

About the Certification:
The FinOps Certified Professional course is a comprehensive and hands-on FinOps training program that covers building, managing, and evolving FinOps teams. This course aims to advance the careers of an experienced FinOps practitioner, deepen their knowledge, and contribute at an advanced level. Learners will also get a chance to collaborate on a business case to address FinOps challenges in a sample organization.

Required Prerequisites:

  • FinOps Certified Practitioner
  • 6+ months of FinOps work experience 

Who’s it for:
Designed for experienced FinOps practitioners aiming to advance their careers, deepen their knowledge, and collaborate with professionals from diverse backgrounds. Ideal for those seeking to enhance their FinOps consulting expertise and contribute at an advanced level. 

Cost of the course: $3,750

4. FinOps Personas courses 

finops trained personasAbout the Certification:
The FinOps Personas course offers an insightful overview of FinOps, emphasizing collaboration and understanding across various FinOps personas. Dedicated courses are available for each persona, including Engineer, Finance, Procurement, Product Owner, and Leader, promoting collaboration and understanding across different roles.

Cost of the course: $150

5. FinOps for Containers 

FinOps for Containers

About the Certification:
FinOps for Containers offers a comprehensive review of container environments, catering to engineers engaged with container infrastructures. The course covers effective communication with non-engineers, identifying sources of wasted cost, integrating observability for cost tracking, and managing idle/shared elements within the environment.

Required Prerequisites:

  • In-depth practical knowledge of one or more cloud providers.
  • Recommended: Fundamental certification in one or more cloud providers, ideally an architect-level certification.
  • Understanding of containerization concepts.
  • Experience with container services and orchestration environments.
  • Knowledge of cloud vendor billing, including tagging, account allocation, and spot billing.

Who’s it for:
Engineers or individuals managing container infrastructures, especially those serving multiple users in an organization. The course equips participants to comprehend expenditure across all environment components, communicate cost data effectively, optimize efficiency, and continually enhance Container usage efficiency.

Cost of the course: $350

6. 2.5.3 Onboarding Workloads 

About the Certification:
The Onboarding Workloads certification, a component of the FinOps Professional course and available separately, focuses on establishing an effective process for migrating and developing applications in the cloud. 
Through this course, you will gain insights into the importance of involving a FinOps team in the onboarding process, distinctions between onboarding in the cloud and on-premise data centers, identification of key activities, best practices, and a comprehensive understanding of what constitutes a successful workload onboarding process at different stages of FinOps maturity, including measurable success criteria.

Cost of the course: $100

These certifications will not only equip you with essential skills but also demonstrate your commitment to staying updated in a rapidly evolving cloud landscape. They can be valuable assets in unlocking diverse career opportunities in cloud financial management, FinOps Consulting, and Cloud FinOps leadership.

The FinOps Foundation even extends financial assistance through its Scholarship Program to individuals passionate about shaping the future of FinOps but facing financial constraints that hinder participation in training courses or certification exams. This initiative actively promotes diversity within FinOps by offering access to underserved demographics without any cost to the recipients.

About The FinOps Foundation

The FinOps Foundation, under The Linux Foundation, is committed to advancing individuals practicing cloud financial management through best practices, education, and standards. With a community of over 12,000 individuals from 3500+ companies, it offers diverse training and certification programs. The foundation's partner certification programs, such as FinOps Certified Platform and FinOps Certified Service Provider, include numerous major service and platform providers including CloudKeeper, reinforcing its industry-wide impact and collaboration.

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