RHEDcloud at Emory

Prior to 2019 it was hard to get data on how much Emory University and Emory Healthcare spent on AWS, because units were purchasing individually by various means, some users even put the charges on their personal credit cards and got reimbursed for “general expenses” or “office supplies.” The best data we have from that period is from Emory purchasing card data, which shows in 2013 and 2014 Emory spent about $2,000 per month on AWS. By 2016 and 2017 Emory was spending on average $5,000 per month on AWS, and the central IT Architecture team was by far the largest customer spending about $2,000 per month. The data showed about 7 teams at Emory including central IT Architecture were using AWS. Since the launch of the AWS at Emory service with RHEDcloud in June 2019, over 44 teams in 11 divisions across Emory University and Emory Healthcare are using AWS in 80 accounts. Emory’s monthly spend for users and infrastructure for this service exceeds $80,000 per month or $960,000 per year. In July of 2020 the increased spend and clear upward trend convinced Emory to enter into a multi-year agreement with AWS for a $1.2 million annual spend with discounts and other benefits for Emory users. Over the period of June 2019 through May 2020 Emory spent over $750,000 in consulting for cloud applications on this service and new features for the service.

AWS at Emory Spend (see details)

RHEDcloud has a distinct value proposition for cloud platform providers, implementation sites, and cloud service providers.

For the Cloud Platform Provider

Implementing RHEDcloud dramatically increases the site’s spend on the platform. It does this by making it easy for research teams and departments to provision their own accounts and VPCs on-demand with security and compliance measures approved by central IT and compliance officers. RHEDcloud aligns the cloud platform provider with information security, compliance, and the central IT function at the adopting site, so that the cloud platform provider’s desire to increase adoption at the site is shared and endorsed by the customer site.

For the Implementation Site

By implementing RHEDcloud, a site is able to manage the total cloud platform spend for the entire institution.  More importantly, it puts in place the compliance mechanisms to implement the central controls, auditing, and integration with enterprise systems to meet critical security and compliance requirements. RHEDcloud preserves the automated, on-demand, instant provisioning experience users get directly from the cloud provider and provides tools to manage, monitor, and maintain the environment for hundreds of research teams, applications, or departmental users. Implementing RHEDcloud should remove the question of “can I run my workload with sensitive data in the cloud with institutional support?” and provide all teams a compliance class of account that meets their needs.

For Cloud Service Providers

RHEDcloud dramatically increases the number of AWS accounts for research teams, departments, and applications within adopting organizations by providing these teams with an institutionally approved platform on which to run any workload regardless of data sensitivity or complexity. The process of implementing RHEDcloud and accounts with compliance classes for all the sites major use cases aligns the cloud provider, central IT, and the research teams and departments who use these accounts. Central IT promotes the service, the cloud platform provider promotes the service, and the implementing organization negotiates multi-year agreements with the cloud providers to get discounts, premier support, and other benefits. This leads to an explosion of applications running on the cloud platform provider and a high demand for expert consulting services to develop new applications in the cloud and migrate existing workloads to the cloud.