What are Chargebacks?
Chargebacks in PyraCloud allow users to take existing cloud consumption and distribute the cost across their organization. Users can pull cloud consumption spend for direct and indirect agreements, define chargeback based on organizational structure and create single or multiple internal chargeback invoice documents.
This is one if the last steps to achieving full end-to-end Cloud Management. Chargebacks offers the following benefits:
- Users can create invoices, split invoices by provider and then charge the respective business unit or department for the cloud services they are using.
- Users have the ability to view, manage and send internal invoices.
- Users no longer need to manage this process manually in a spreadsheet.
Chargebacks depends on the Consumption Module and Custom Groups Module in PyraCloud. Only the Consumption Module is mandatory. It is possible to generate a summary document and split by Tenants & Subscriptions without further configuration. Custom distribution of costs across separate documents requires “Custom Group” being configured and resources properly assigned.
Navigating to Chargebacks
Accessing Chargebacks in PyraCloud is done by clicking on Analyze > Chargebacks.
Clicking on Chargebacks will open the main Chargebacks page which has two tabs “Chargebacks” and “Settings” as well as three buttons on the top left where you can “View Scheduled Reports”, “Add New Schedule” or “Add New Chargebacks”.
Chargebacks has two access levels:
- User Level: Users with this access level will only be able to see the Chargebacks tab. The Add New Chargebacks page will not be available to users who have “User Level Access”. User Level Access is for users who need to view chargebacks but do not have permission to create chargebacks. These users can then access the document details in order to analyze the charges using PyraCloud’s Consumption module. This will give users the detailed information of the relevant chargeback
- Admin Level: Users with this access level will be able to see both the Chargeback tab as well as the Add New Chargebacks tab. Admins can view, create, modify and delete chargebacks.
Issuing Documents in Recurring Manner
- (Optional) Configure Custom Groups or Tenants & Subscriptions (Consumption module documentation).
- Set bill-to details on Settings page
- Configure scheduled report
- Adjust generated document in Chargeback section.
- Send documents to recipient.
- Generate summary report of issued documents
Issue One-Time Document
- (Optional) Configure Custom Groups or Tenants & Subscriptions (Consumption module documentation).
- Generate document by hand using Setup page
- Adjust generated documents (Chargebacks section).
- Send documents to recipient.
- Open generated document in Chargebacks by clicking on the line item in the Chargabacks tab section.
- Apply additional charges/discounts, change currency, bill-to and other properties. If document has been sent then new version will be created.
- Send corrected document to recipient.
In the Chargeback tab, users can see all chargeback invoices including specific details about that invoice as outlined below:
|Document Name||Name of the document|
|Chargeback No.||This is unique number for generated chargeback invoice. Column hidden by default.|
|Providers||Publisher list taken into consideration for document|
|Bill To||Company name which paying department belongs to|
|Recipient’s email. Column hidden by default.|
|Document Date||Date of document generation|
|Amount||Amount of this Chargeback i.e. Total of all line items|
|Billing/Usage period||Consumption filter – start/end date or list of billing periods – it has been generated for|
|Status||Status of the chargeback invoice.|
Possible values: “Generating”, “Generated”, ”Sent”, “Failed”.
Users can click on any row to open a detailed view of the respective chargeback invoice. The page shows all information related to the document and gives user the ability to edit.
Document view – consists of header, body and footer. On the right side “Actions”, “Activity” and “Versions” panels are available.
Header – consists of name and date the document was generated. Bill-to address, company logo, customer number, consumption/billing period date range and field to store custom notes.
Body – lists the line items. Each line item is described with appropriate providers, total resources count and amount. Line items are further divided into sub lines, which display top Resource Types.
Resource Type – defines provider and type of resource. If the resource type is virtual machines or storage, user will also see SaaS connected resource types like “User” or “License”. Please consult Consumption Module for more details.
Footer – displays contacts, company information and exchange rates applied during currency conversion. Additionally system-wide unique Chargeback Number is visible and should be used during contact with Support in case of issues with document.
Office 365 licenses are classified by theirs assignment status. On chargeback document, assigned licenses are visible as “User” subline with resource count matching active users. On the other hand, unassigned license are gathered under “License” subline with resource count matching number of license type (like Office365 E3 or E5).
Additional charges represents new line items added by hand to generated document. Costs associated with such line may represent various invoice corrections or items not associated with consumption data. Support fee, discounts, credits are typical examples for such charge.
Functionality is available through “Add Charge or Credit” button visible on bottom of line item list.
Additional charges may be fixed or percentage based. Percentage amount is calculated based on consumption data only, therefore other lines (e.g. markup) are not taken into consideration. Negative values are calculated as discounts. Additional charges can be removed with Delete button.
Documents based on Custom Groups can display nested groups sublines. Whole purpose of sublines is to add more transparency to the cost of the line item. It is an alternative to displaying top Resource Types.
Subgroups are organized in tree structure. Visibility and depth of presented sublines can be selected in the Customize menu. Please note that the cost of subline is not calculated into the total cost of the document. In other words, it provides justification for line costs.
Name of given subgroup (and therefore line name) can be properly adjusted on Settings page.
Generated documents often miss crucial information needed to justify the amount associated with line items. Moreover, documents often require appending internal tracking numbers. Notes address both of these needs and has the capability to store text and append it to generated PDF. The field is accessible near the top of the document.
Chargeback documents are “read only” after being sent. Further edits of sent documents are treated as separate versions. New versions are marked with the date and person making the edits. All changes are collated as long as the new version is not sent to the recipient again.
Previous versions are accessible through the panel on the right hand side of the document. Previous versions cannot be changed or deleted.
Actions and Activity Panel
The Chargebacks page has an “Actions” panel on the right hand side, which will allow users to perform actions with selected invoice as outlined below:
- Export with Charts as a PDF or Export as PDF
- Analyze Consumption Report
- Export resource data to CSV
- Delete Chargeback. Document is permanently removed from the system
- Activity – send document to the recipient. After sending document, status is being changed to “Sent”.
Sent documents are delivered to the recipient by email. Recipients receive a PDF with the chargeback document along with a link to the detailed report (CSV file).
The detailed file describes every line of document with Meter Name, Volume and Resource Name. Data provided in CSV files are input to calculations performed to generate the chargeback document. Attached details can be imported to external systems for reference or further analysis. Diagnosis of miscalculations is also feasible.
The links to the detailed files expire after 5 days from the time the message is received. Regeneration of links is possible by sending documents once again – using the “Send” button in Chargeback Manager.
Adding New Chargebacks
Click on the “Add New Chargebacks” button as shown below:
This will open the New Chargebacks page. There is an intro paragraph explaining what chargebacks are that can be hidden by clicking on the [x].
The first section is “Providers”. This represents list of all available and supported provider groups.
Admins needs to select all of the providers they want to create chargeback invoice for. By selecting a provider, the system fetches consumption data for every tenant that is enabled under that provider.
Once providers have been selected, click on “Done” to navigate to the next section “Date Range”.
The “Date Range” section allows Admin to narrow down the date range of consumption data. The date range is specified in two modes:
- Usage Dates – described with start/end dates
- Billing Period – list of periods connected to bill cycles
Once the date range has been selected, click on “Done” to navigate to the next section “Create”.
Newly selected consumption spend (by selecting providers and date range) may be optionally divided in two ways:
- Using Custom Group structure
- Using Tenants & Subscriptions hierarchy
Split by Custom Groups
The Custom Groups section shows group structure as defined in PyraCloud Custom Groups. This allows Admins to select departments/groups they would like chargebacks for.
Selecting each group allows Admins to split chargeback invoices for selected groups. If none of the groups are selected, one global chargeback invoice is created for complete consumption of selected providers.
Costs displayed against each group is the estimated consumption by that group. Consumption for all ungrouped resources is reflected as “Untracked” in this section.
Click on “Done” to navigate to the next section “Review Chargeback”
Split by Tenants & Subscriptions
Tenants & Subscriptions are the foundation of the Consumption module. Chargebacks use the existing structure to create documents. No further configuration is required. Convention based approach is applied: every Tenant is documented with lines derived from its Subscriptions.
Review Chargeback is the last section that summarizes the selections Admin user has made and provides the following capabilities to Admins:
- Admins can preview the document that will be generated
- Admins can edit the Bill To details
- Admins can change the name of the document i.e. chargeback invoice – This allows users to name the invoice appropriately within the organization
Selecting “Preview” will open a preview of the invoice so that Admins can see how it will be displayed on chargeback tab.
Selecting “Edit Bill To” will allow Admin to edit the Bill-To details if required. Admins can change the address and contact details for the chargeback.
Once all the selections are made and the preview looks good, Admins can go ahead and create the chargeback documents by clicking on “Finish & Create [n] Chargebacks” (where [n] is the number of Chargebacks as shown below
Admins will be taken to the “Chargeback” page where they can see the invoices being generated. This is shown in the right hand “Status” column as “Generating”.
Once the invoices are ready, the status will be changed to “Generated”.
Once the invoices are generated, all the actions explained in the Chargeaback section of this document can be performed.
Invoice documents are issued many times throughout the year. Manually adjusting documents every time is unreasonable. Common information like bill-to details, margin or contact information are typically recurring for given document series. They can be bound to single group or subscription. Settings page persist and allows editing most of information stored in document header.
Settings can be attached to either Custom Group, Tenant or Subscription. All levels stores the same set of settings. Stored settings are used twofold: as default values for manual generation (Setup) and base data during scheduled generation (Reporting).
Settings tab is divided into left pane and right pane.
The Left pane represents the tree structure of either Custom Groups or Tenants & Subscriptions. Clicking on a tree element selects particular entity and form is filled with appropriate data (by default form is empty).
The Right pane holds a set of information used during document generation. Data filled in the form are auto-saved.
Chargebacks supports rich reporting capabilities. Reports allow ad-hoc and scheduled export of data. Granularity of report extends from basic overview to resource level details. It is also possible to generate new documents with selected cadence.
Where to Find Reports
If you are in Chargebacks, you have the option to “View Schedule Reports” Or “Add New Schedule” by clicking on the buttons on the top right.
You can also navigate to the main reports page by clicking on “Analyze” in the main navigation menu and then selecting “Reports” as shown below:
This will take you to the “Quick Reports” page. From here you can click on the dropdown under “Chargeback Manager” and select the report you want.
Chargeback Report Types
Chargeback module supports four report types:
- All Chargebacks Detailed
- All Chargeback Overview
- Chargeback Detail
- Original Document
- Provider Based Overview
The top four reports gather data about existing Chargeback documents. The last one, Original Document, creates new documents and sends them to configured email address.
All Chargeback Detailed
This is an enriched version of the overview report with detailed line information. Each row of the report stands for a single line in the document. Line cost, currency, list of providers and resource count is available.
All Chargeback Overview
This report summarize basic information about all documents generated within target date range. Each row represents a single document. Apart from the header information like document name, bill-to details; total amount and currency are present.
This is detailed report for a chargeback line information. Each row of the report stands for a single line in the document. Line cost, currency, list of providers and resource count is available.
Report focuses on provider’s shares analysis. Line information are split across all contributing providers. Further aggregation of data may answer questions regarding each provider cost across all selected documents, trends in provider’s shares, etc.
Report enables scheduled generation of documents – in contrast to analysis of existing documents that previous types focus on. Outcome of running report is set of new documents, which can further be adjusted in Chargeback module (Additional Cost, etc.). Rich configuration options of the report in cooperation with Settings allow achieving functionality similar to manual generation..
Scheduled reports enable periodic reporting with automatic delivery capabilities. Scheduled report definition represents “future report form” which will be filled with appropriate data. Both data set and time or running the report can be customized to meet business requirements.
Reports are gathered under the “Scheduled” Tab.
New Scheduled Report
To create a new Scheduled Report click on “Add New Schedule” in the top right hand corner of the Chargebacks page.
This will open the Schedule Report page where you can follow the steps and fill in the required information for your report.