Mainframe Blog

Are you making the most of IBM’s Tailored Fit Pricing?

2 minute read
Paul Spicer

IBM’s Tailored Fit Pricing (TFP) model provides contract options for mainframe organizations that more closely align with popular cloud subscription models. While mainframe organizations gain flexibility in cost management and more transparent, predictable costs, the burden of monitoring and making changes to control costs is still dependent on the mainframe operations team. If you ultimately use more than you committed to, or are not able to accurately forecast growth, you may be surprised by the costs. So, how can you make sure you stay within your commitments while forecasting and keeping things predictable?

Because every customer will have a different cost per million service units (MSU), even if they’re running the same products or capacity, each will need to determine the best model for their unique situation. Customers should also be able to perform analysis to ensure they can anticipate accurate growth and not grow higher than expected, which can drive unexpected costs.

BMC helps you get the most from your TFP subscription with reporting, forecasting, and management of TFP consumption. BMC AMI Cost Management allows customers to monitor their consumption and respond to abnormal consumption while also predicting usage and growth to contain cost. BMC Compuware ThruPut Manager allows customers to control batch workload in response to surging CPU demands and manage or reduce overall TFP MSU consumption.

Our latest updates to BMC AMI Cost Management include a number of new insights to support TFP by delivering both at-a-glance and detailed information. A new monthly summary report and month-to-month navigation across previous reports make it easier to compare usage and see emerging trends like TFP costs and MSU consumption. BMC AMI Cost Management also now includes historical MSU usage and your projected 12-month usage so you can forecast costs and ensure you are able to control consumption before an abnormality can occur.

TFP DevTest subscribers can leverage rolling 4-hour average (R4HA) details in order to drill down further into MSU consumption drivers like the top-consuming logical partitions (LPARs), workloads (service and report class), importance, subsystems, and suites. Another valuable report recently added shows your total consumption by LPAR, along with the peak intervals so you can focus on your most heavily used areas when demand is at its highest.

To help control rises in consumption, a new job/started task control (STC) consumption report is available for all workload types with consumption aggregated and metrics tallied for each job and STC executed. You can see at-a-glance information like your top 250 most-consuming jobs and STCs and then pivot to more details of an instance by clicking on a specific job/STC.

Lastly, BMC Compuware Thruput Manager’s automated capacity management feature can help TFP management by constraining lower-importance workloads across multiple systems when CPU cycles are in danger of being overcommitted. Batch and online applications, as well as systems code, run more efficiently with lower cycles per instruction (CPI) values that translate into fewer MSUs consumed and overall lower consumption reported by the sub-capacity reporting tool (SCRT) to do the same workload. On systems with the Tailored Fit Pricing Hardware Consumption Solution (TFP-HW), automated capacity management can detect when CPU usage is about to use part of the TFP-HW capacity corridor and constrain batch workloads to avoid or reduce corridor use so it can be used by time-critical online work.

Don’t lose the benefits of Tailored Fit Pricing with poor visibility or management. BMC AMI Cost Management and BMC Compuware ThruPut Manager can help you take control of your cost drivers.

“To learn more about how BMC can help you control your software license costs, click here.”

These postings are my own and do not necessarily represent BMC's position, strategies, or opinion.

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About the author

Paul Spicer

Paul Spicer is a lead product manager for BMC’s zSolutions and is responsible for Automation, Middleware Management and Install strategy.

Paul has over 35 years of experience working with IBM mainframe systems, with over 30 years providing systems management solutions in roles spanning software development and product management.

Prior to joining BMC, Paul worked at software vendors including Macro4, Candle Corporation and IBM.