My thoughts on private cloud

I was looking at the problem space from my own software development experience and how I used to help others in informal approach at Proteans. In traditional IT development, to perform performance testing, load testing and functional testing. For these we acquire a lot of resources sometimes right at the start of the project and some of the hardware resources are idle for first 50% of the project and we sometimes charge the customer for whole duration of the project. There is a loss of money and electricity.
Manager do not have self-service option to serve clients to get hardware and software on short notice. There is no easy way for them to move to cloud or help available to decide to move to cloud. So typically to mitigate risks, they get sufficient resource at the start of the project. As an architect or Dev manager , there is no easy approach to plan for optimized cost of resources during software development across my architecture and design planning. How can we help them at their work in formal way?

1. Provide them a shopping cart that helps to evaluate the cost of required resources.
2. Provide a way to know the cost for immediate need or planned need based on various configured parameters.
3. Once I procure my resources, provide access to my team through a service portal. I want to be less dependent on IT.

I see private cloud is offered by VMware and Microsoft. Now my inputs

1. VMware and Microsoft might provide basic work flows. They need to tailored to needs to Enterprise who want to adopt private cloud. I think that every enterprise might need something like this. So can we build a self-service portal for our internal use? This can provide us expertise to build a similar one for other Enterprises. May be this can become a workflow product targeted at cloud.

2. Once there is a clear self-service work flow which automated with a programmable interface, we can think of making it is distributed and elastic. How? We decide based on the request whether to provide computing power and storage as part of private cloud or part of Windows Azure or part of Amazon EC2. May be this can become a decision making tool targeted at cloud.
3. To achieve 2, there is a lot of advocacy work so that cloud providers need to provide standard pricing terminologies which helps in comparison of cloud provider and enables the decision process at Enteprises.

I would prefer to stop here and ask for feedback