What Are the Five Pillars of the Azure Well-architected Framework?

Azure Well-architected Framework

Azure’s Well-Architected Framework is a set of five pillars that contain best practices in implementing a perfect cloud environment. The Azure Well-Architected Framework helps cloud users build resilient, efficient, secure, and high-performance infrastructure. This framework provides guidance on how to build, deploy, and manage workloads.

The five pillars of the Azure well-architected framework are:

  • Security
  • Cost optimization
  • Operational excellence
  • Reliability
  • Performance efficiency

At its core, the Azure well-architected framework helps to:

  • Identify and correct risks in the cloud ecosystem
  • Make apps more responsive and value to customers

Using the well-architected best practices, you can design, build, and continuously improve your architecture.

Benefits of the Azure Well-Architected Framework

Users who adhere to the model are more likely to yield great apps, achieve compliance, and minimize downtimes. Other benefits include:

  • Continuous Assessment: The Well-Architected Framework advocates for frequent assessment of Azure infrastructure, which keeps up with the latest developments in technology.
  • Achieve Compliance: Companies in highly-regulated industries can work on sensitive data projects. Organizations that follow Azure’s Well-Architected Framework are more likely to get into high-end government procurement systems.
  • Ease of Transition: The Well-Architected Model accounts for change management by allowing freelance developers to collaborate with in-house teams without compromising security.

The Five Pillars of Azure Well-Architected Framework

Here are the best principles for each pillar of Azure’s Well-Architected Model.


This pillar secures Azure applications from threats. Whether it is malware, Trojan, or virus, this pillar ensures minimum data exfiltration. The pillar advocates for a multi-layered security approach. Azure cloud engineers set up the first security layer. Microsoft recommends that each cloud engineer adds extra layers of security to their account.

Security begins with identity management, ensuring that each application has a list of authorized users. In Azure, users can define access policies, networking policies, and even physical security. According to the new Well-Architected Framework, security uses a shared responsibility model.

Cost Optimization

Cost optimization begins with paying for what you use. This pillar helps users get more out of their cloud expenditure. It also positions the cloud as a cheaper option than an expensive on-premise environment. Azure’s Build-Measure-Learn approach ensures organizations get faster to market at an affordable capital expenditure (CAPEX).

In addition, Azure always has a free tier plan and free trials to help users evaluate the value of resources before paying for them. Users can save up to 80% with Reserved Instances and up to 90% with Spot Instances. Regardless of the pricing model, Azure allocates the same compute capacity, so users do not have to compromise performance while saving costs.

Operational Excellence

This pillar ensures that customers and end-users get their promised features to work effectively. The goal is to keep the production running without unnecessary interruptions and downtimes.

Azure Well-Architected Framework recommends breaking down large projects into small milestones, which makes it easy to manage resources. Various teams can collaborate seamlessly on the Azure infrastructure. An organization that adheres to this pillar also uses the CI/CD (continuous integration/continuous deployment/delivery) in its lifecycle. Monitoring and analytics tools also help in the fulfillment of operational excellence. Azure advisor offers recommendations on improving the overall health of your infrastructure.

Performance Efficiency

Performance involves measuring critical aspects of the infrastructure to fix any potential flaws. All Azure Well-Architected applications have to adapt to changes, whether it is a change in environment, region, or workloads. Azure autoscale features help users scale up or down depending on the demand. Users can choose the most efficient time to run their workloads.

Users can also allocate more resources to meet end-user needs. These resources include computing capacity, disk volumes, memory, and more. You can also attach multiple resources in one instance. Highly efficient teams can run multiple Instances at the same time.


Reliability refers to the robustness of a system. A robust system can easily adjust to meet the users’ needs. A reliable application has good backup features. Azure migrator helps users back up their on-premise resources in the secure cloud. Backups assist in disaster recovery and failures. Azure has resilient capabilities that return applications to normal working conditions after a loss.

Users can run resources with high availability on Azure’s 99% uptime infrastructure. High-availability resources rarely get interruptions and network outages.

The Bottom Line

Organizations looking to gain a competitive edge can rely on the Azure Well-Architected Framework to optimize workloads and become more efficient. It helps organizations build applications and deploy workloads with speed and agility.

nOps allows Azure users to automate the implementation of the WAFR (Well-Architected Framework) process. nOps allows you to assess your workloads against the well-architected practices to ensure they are secure, reliable, and high performing. This assessment gives you a 360-degree visibility into your existing cloud environment and key arrears to improve.

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