Cost Groups 


After you have configured clouds for Cost Optimizer, you may set up cost groups to classify the data. Data classification helps you to distinguish and identify the data. Use the Cost Groups page to classify data and define your hierarchy.


Throughout this document, you will refer to the following terms:


Cost Group Type

Maps to the various functions in an organization, for example, Development, HR, IT, and so on.

Cost Groups

Hierarchical structure to define your organization and distribute billing units.

Cloud Account

Credentials for logging in to a cloud provider.

Billing Units

Refers to different entities depending on the cloud. These entities are account IDs in Amazon cloud, Project IDs in Google cloud, Subscription ID in AzureRM cloud, Datacenter name (prefixed with the cloud group) in vCenter clouds, Project ID in OpenStack cloud, and Namespace UID in Kubernetes cloud.

What's in the Cost Groups UI? 

The Cost Groups UI has the following: Cost Group Type (Department(s)) and Unassigned Billing Units. See UI Behavior for details on icons.

The following table explains the icons in the UI (in alphabetical order).




Perform action-oriented tasks – Add, Delete, Rename, and Share on the Cost Group.

Add Cost Group

Add a Cost Group to a Cost Group Type.

Cost Group Type

Lists Cost Group Types set up in Cost Optimizer and add Cost Group Type.


Allows you filter for the billing units based on the specified category.

Move Billing Units

Move multiple billing units to a cost group. This icon is enabled after Billing Units are selected.


Search resources based on the specified text.

Select All

Select all items displayed on the page by clicking the checkbox in the table header or by clicking the checkbox against each item.

Unassigned Billing Units

Cloud accounts that have not yet been assigned to a cost group.

Cost Group Type

A Cost Group Type is equivalent, but not restricted, to the various functions in an organization. For example, an organization might have different functions, such as Development, Finance, IT, Sales, Support, etc. Cost Optimizer ships with a seeded Cost Group Type called Department associated with the root tenant.

Cost Group

A Cost Group is a hierarchical structure that you define for your organization. You can have a flat or vertical cost group, depending on your need. In case of a vertical cost group, there can be as many levels (departments and subdepartments) as you desire. For instance, Development would have sub-functions such as automation, core development, testing, release team, etc. The hierarchical structure can also be imported via a .csv file.

Sharing Cost Groups

Sharing is the provision of an entity or service present in more than one function in an organization. Any user can share an entity by using the Share option. This option works on the principle of ACL functionality where a user assigned to a cost group can share the cost groups with other users or user groups.

You can configure sharing at the Users or Groups levels as determined by your access permission as shown in the following screenshot. 

The following table identifies the access levels for Cost Optimizer.




To assign specific permissions to individual users, add the users to this resource, then set permission options for each user.


To assign permissions to a user group, add the user group to this resource, then set permission options.

See Access and Roles > Access Control Lists (ACLs).

Billing Units

Billing units are used for cost breakdown. When validating a cloud account, billing units are automatically discovered and associated with the cloud accounts.

Adding a Cost Group Type

  1. Click the arrow next to the cost group type (Department).

  2. Choose Add Cost Group Type.

  3. Specify a name for the cost group type, in singular and plural format in the respective fields.

  4. Click Save.

Adding Cost Group

  1. Click the Add Department icon. The Add Department dialog appears.

  2. Specify the Department Name and choose the Parent Department

  3. Click Done.

Alternately, you can import departments by uploading a .csv file. A sample .csv file is provided in the Import Department dialog for your reference. 

In the Import Department dialog, click Upload .csv and navigate to the location in your machine where the .csv file resides to import the file.

Associating a Billing Unit

You associate a billing unit to a cost group type through a cost group. To associate a billing unit, do the following the Billing Units area.

  1. Drag a billing unit from the Billing Unit area and drop the billing unit under a cost group type or cost group.

  2. Click the Move Billing Unit icon adjacent to a Billing Unit.

  3. To move multiple billing units, select the billing units to be moved and choose the Move Billing Units icon in the top right corner in the Billing Units area.

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