Improvement process - Sustainability Pillar

Improvement process

The architectural improvement process includes understanding what you have and what you can do to improve, selecting targets for improvement, testing improvements, adopting successful improvements, quantifying your success and sharing what you have learned so that it can be replicated elsewhere, and then repeating the cycle.

The goals of your improvements can be:

  • To eliminate waste, low utilization, and idle or unused resources

  • To maximize the value from resources you consume


Use all the resources you provision, and complete the same work with the minimum resources possible.

In early stages of optimization, first eliminate areas with waste or low utilization, and then move toward more targeted optimizations that fit your specific workload.

Monitor changes to the consumption of resources over time. Identify where accumulated changes result in inefficient or significant increases in resource consumption. Determine the need for improvements to address the changes in consumption and implement the improvements you prioritize.

The following steps are designed to be an iterative process that evaluates, prioritizes, tests, and deploys sustainability-focused improvements for cloud workloads.

  1. Identify targets for improvement: Review your workloads against best practices for sustainability that are identified in this document, and identify targets for improvement.

  2. Evaluate specific improvements: Evaluate specific changes for potential improvement, projected cost, and business risk.

  3. Prioritize and plan improvements: Prioritize changes that offer the largest improvements at the least cost and risk, and establish a plan for testing and implementation.

  4. Test and validate improvements: Implement changes in testing environments to validate their potential for improvement.

  5. Deploy changes to production: Implement changes across production environments.

  6. Measure results and replicate successes: Look for opportunities to replicate successes across workloads, and revert changes with unacceptable outcomes.

Example scenario

The following example scenario is referenced later in this document to illustrate each step of the improvement process.

Your company has a workload that performs complex image manipulations on Amazon EC2 instances and stores the modified and original files for user access. The processing activities are CPU intensive, and the output files are extremely large.