Rik Groenewoud

Rik Groenewoud

Xebia | Microsoft Managed Services | Customer Success | Observability | FinOps | Infrastructure as Code

Zwolle, The Netherlands

As a Managed Services Consultant at Xebia, I care about customer success. It all starts with customer intimacy: understand what the customer wants to achieve and feeling their struggle and pains. I approach Managed Services with a devOps mindset. This means I want step away from a traditional transactional relationship and really aim to work together as a team. For me it is all about enabling customers to achieve their goals.

I am particularly interested in the continuity, reliability and security of the products and services we deliver. By applying ideas and practices from devOps, SRE, Observability and FinOps, I aim to get a little better every day.

I'm 35 years old, happily married, and the proud father of two daughters and a son. We live in Zwolle, situated in the northeastern region of the Netherlands.

Area of Expertise

  • Information & Communications Technology


  • Monitoring & Observability
  • Automation & CI/CD
  • DevOps
  • Monitoring
  • Azure
  • Azure DevOps
  • SRE
  • Cloud FinOps for Engineers
  • Cloud FInOps for Executives
  • FinDevOps
  • Finops
  • Azure Infrastructure

The best answer on where and how to apply alerts: Azure Monitor Baseline Alerts

When maintaining an Azure Infrastructure landscape, such as a Landing Zone, one of the most significant challenges is monitoring it effectively. How can you ensure proactive alerts for potential issues? Where should you place these alerts, and what thresholds should you set? How do you cover everything important while avoiding alert fatigue?

Recently, Microsoft and the community introduced an open-source framework designed to address these questions and provide guidance on deploying alerts in a Landing Zone scenario. This framework is known as Azure Monitor Baseline Alerts (AMBA). It offers a set of alerts with best practice configurations, utilizing Azure Policies for deployment.

In this session, I will delve into what AMBA is and how you can leverage it. We will explore the strength of deploying alerts via Policies and discuss potential pitfalls and downsides of using the AMBA framework.

How To Do Managed Services the DevOps Way

How can you ensure you maintain control while managing multiple Azure landing zones for various customers concurrently?

During this session, I will demonstrate how we've implemented Observability practices to operate a Managed Services company in alignment with the DevOps methodology.

By doing so, we've achieved the capability to deliver a robust platform (landing zone), empowering teams to independently run and maintain their workloads.

Our approach combines Azure's native tools, Azure DevOps, along with third-party tools like Grafana, Prometheus, and PagerDuty to create an integrated solution.

This presentation will illustrate the transformation from traditional reactive Managed Services to a collaborative reality where service providers and customers actively cooperate, enhancing value creation every day

Is Azure Managed Grafana and Prometheus the way to go?

During this session, we'll embark on an exploration of two exciting Azure services: Azure Managed Grafana, which officially launched on August 31, 2022, and Azure Managed Prometheus, currently in preview. Our journey will involve a comprehensive comparison between these Azure offerings and their well-established counterparts, Grafana and Prometheus.

We'll seek to answer several key questions throughout our discussion:

- What exactly do these Azure Managed Services entail, and how can they benefit your projects and operations?
- What are the ideal use cases for Azure Managed Grafana and Prometheus, and how can they enhance your cloud ecosystem?
- How do these managed Azure services measure up against their self-hosted or cloud-hosted counterparts, and what advantages do they bring to the table?
- What potential downsides or limitations should you consider when opting for Azure Managed Grafana or Prometheus?

By the end of our exploration, we'll assess whether Azure Managed offerings have what it takes to emerge victorious in this face-off, or if the well-established tools still hold their ground.

Join us on this journey to gain insights into these new Azure services and make informed decisions about their integration into your cloud infrastructure.

Shifting Left: Visualizing Cloud Spend from Every Angle for Full Control and Optimization

In the current challenging economic climate, there's a growing emphasis on the cost aspect of cloud computing. For DevOps engineers, taking control of the cloud spend they generate is crucial. The FinOps model is gaining popularity as a means to maximize the use of cloud technology, delivering value while reducing unnecessary expenses.

A key component of FinOps is increasing the visibility of financial data for engineers and developers, equipping them with the tools needed to integrate cost data into their daily workflows. The ultimate goal is to empower these teams to make informed decisions that consider not only technical performance data but also the associated costs. The guiding principle is:

'You build it, you run it, you pay for it.'"

Azure Lowlands 2023 Sessionize Event

June 2023 Utrecht, The Netherlands

Virtual Boston Azure User group Sessionize Event

March 2023

Rik Groenewoud

Xebia | Microsoft Managed Services | Customer Success | Observability | FinOps | Infrastructure as Code

Zwolle, The Netherlands

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