#6 Building a successful SRE practice through capabilities

Episode 6 [SREpath Podcast]

We discuss the need for a framework to guide the development of Site Reliability Engineers (SREs) and drive value for organizations.

You will learn about our pillar view of areas like observability and service management, to identify areas for improvement and emphasize the importance of focusing on a few key areas at a time.

We also discuss the challenges of hiring experienced SRE practitioners and suggest developing existing employees’ skills and capabilities to become effective SREs.

A capability view of SRE work can help establish a clear career path for SREs within an organization while aligning with acute organizational goals.

Timestamps for key concepts

Identifying SRE Pillars [00:00:20] Discussion of the different technology disciplines or practices that SREs can work in, such as observability, release engineering, service management, DevSecOps, performance and capacity engineering, platform engineering, and developer experience.

Focus Areas for SREs [00:02:27] Importance of focusing on a few areas at a time and diving deep into them to identify and overcome challenges. The speakers discuss their current focus areas, which include observability, release engineering, and service management.

Developing SRE Practitioners [00:06:00] Discussion of the challenges of hiring experienced SRE practitioners and the suggestion of developing existing employees’ skills and capabilities to become effective SREs. The speakers highlight the need for a framework to guide the development of SREs and drive value for the organization.

Establishing a Career Path for SREs [00:08:52] The speakers discuss the need to establish a career path for SREs within an organization, including developing existing employees’ skills and capabilities to become effective SREs and setting proper expectations for each level of SRE.

Related article:  #24 – Growing as an SRE (Part 1)

Collaborating with Other Departments and Teams [00:11:33] The speakers provide ideas for how SREs can collaborate with other departments and teams, including establishing regular communication channels, forming cross-functional teams, and encouraging knowledge sharing as a community within the organization.

Reliability as an Organizational Conversation [00:13:20] The speakers emphasize the importance of reliability as an organizational conversation, involving not just engineering but also other partners such as product, care, strategic, and marketing teams, to make products and services for customers reliable.