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Method To Control ODCS Delivery Costs

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000029772D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Jul-12
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Jul-12
Document File: 2 page(s) / 40K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

"Control ODCS (On Demand Center Services) Delivery Costs" is a tactical methodology which addresses the activities that define the costing parameters for a customer, implements and monitors those definitions and thereby provides customer data for billing within the On Demand environment. This environment is comprised of multiple customers who share resources which requires greater diligence in tracking all financial data to the applicable customers workload as well as all other customers on that hardware

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Method To Control ODCS Delivery Costs

A method is disclosed which describes the method for capturing costs in the On-Demand environment, where the customers are boarded on shared platforms, where disk, tape, CPU (Central Processing Unit) and memory are shared by multiple clients. At contract signing, these resources are allocated as the contract specifies. However, the customer may exceed the provided resources during the course of doing business at which point additional resources will be allocated to the customer. Conversely, the customer may not fully utilize the provided resources. As the customer is only billed for resources actually used, the customers' use of the provided resources must be constantly monitored. The methods goal is to accurately track all costs associated with a customer, and provide that data to the appropriate contract owner for invoice handling.

The new and unique situation that necessitated this invention is the requirement to use a hybrid billing model instead of traditional outsourcing billing. On-demand billing charges the customer for the amount of processor, storage, and network services used, plus fixed charges for non-usage related items. This billing model is unique to On-demand as customers were traditionally charged for an entire processor, storage device, or network hardware, along with labor charges to support the contract.

Therefore, controlling the On-Demand delivery budget is accomplished by specifically defining the equipment and labor costs for On Demand, and determining the customer cost recovery required. As such, the Control ODCS Delivery Costs method covers system hardware (CPU, tape, disk) and software utilization as well as capturing certain fixed charges associated with servicing the customer.

This is accomplished via a methods driven approach, where best practices are achieved by following a consistent yet tailorable template, by setting up the account and then the task of gathering all cost data associated with a customer and providing that data back to the opportunity owning team for subsequent billing. To accomplish this, the following activities are included:

New account set up:

Billing Ids are created for each account to accurately capture and pass costing at the appropriate time. Customer Id's are associated with system, subsystems, memory, disk storage, etc., as allocated to the customer.

Gathering costing data:

Data is co...