Cloud Buyers' Requirements Questionnaire : FR: Functional
If the functional characteristics of your workload are complementary to the other workloads enabled by a provider (i.e., if your workload improves the provider's diversity factor), then your business will be more attractive to that provider, and you should be able to negotiate better terms and conditions. (An improved diversity factor translates to higher resource yield.) You also reduce the risk of an outage due to insufficient resources during your peak consumption periods.
Key yield improvement factors include: variable resource requirements, variable QoS requirements, and fractional headcount consumption.
FR.1: What is the periodicity of your typical steady state usage?
Periodicity is the cycle of requirements, including average, peak, and off-hours. Cycles may be on a calendar basis (including hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annually), or on an event basis.
- Monthly periodicity – peaks at the same time each month
- Annual periodicity – seasonal peaks
- Special events: planned events with predictable capacity, which don’t occur at the same time each month or year. Event examples: weather patterns such as blizzards, fads such as the “Tickle Me Elmo” doll, occasions such as weddings, and disasters such as fires.
FR.2: What is the growth or shrinkage of your typical steady state usage?
- Increase/decrease in capacity at the beginning of each steady state contract year
- One-time changes
- Including acquisitions/divestitures, regulatory changes, and new markets
FR.3: What is the average and peak number of users by type?
Types of user include business users, “power” users, and process administrators.
- The average number of xx users is xx, and the peak is yy.
FR.4: What is the predictability and periodicity of business activity (workload)?
- Very predictable; normal activity 8:00 EST – 16:00 EST, Monday-Friday; peak activity last two days of each month, quarter, and fiscal year (ending March 31).
- Moderately predictable; normal activity 7×24; peak activity late November through December, with a half-peak in August.
- Very predictable; normal activity 8:00 EST – 16:00 EST, Monday-Friday; peak activity 48 hours mid-month and end-of-month.
- Fairly predictable; normal activity 8:00 EST – 16:00 EST, Monday-Friday for management, and 7×24 for online training; peak activity 4 - 6 weeks per year for certifications.
- Fairly predictable; normal activity 8:00 EST – 17:00 EST, Monday-Friday for interactive, and off-hours Monday-Thursday for regular reports; peak activity off-hours Friday-Sunday for weekly report, and 1 - 4 times per week for ad hoc reports.
- Very predictable; normal activity business working hours; peak activity May-July (peak manufacturing period).
- Very predictable; normal activity business working hours; peak activity last week of October (last week of employee open enrollment period).
FR.5: How closely do the business-critical periods (periods of peak QoS) align with the workload periodicity?
- The periods of peak business criticality and peak workload for an order fulfillment enablement solution for a clothing retailer are very tightly correlated.
- The periods of peak business criticality and peak workload for a campaign management enablement solution for a clothing retailer are not tightly correlated. (The peak workload occurs off-hours while processing the weekly data import from a private label credit card processor; the peak business criticality occurs when the CEO requests an ad hoc report.)