Walk, talk and git commit: SRE onboarding (2/2)

In part one of this series, I talked about my early weeks as an SRE at Hosted Graphite. After jumping into on-call, getting to grips with our Architecture and getting acquainted with 5 years worth of tasks, I was almost ready to call myself a fully fledged member of SRE. Little did I know, my…

But first, on-call: SRE onboarding (skydiving for nerds) 1/2

Onboarding a new hire is a tricky process and can be very difficult to get right. I’ve worked at/with companies that have had zero onboarding or way too much. In the past, it was either: being pushed out of the plane without a parachute; or the parachute was already deployed and I didn’t make it…

Spooky action at a distance, how an AWS outage ate our load balancer

Distributed systems are complex beasts and notoriously hard to debug. Sometimes it’s hard to understand how an outage on one service will affect another, and no matter how much we think we understand a given system, it will still surprise us in new and interesting ways. What follows is the story of one of those…

Collaboration > evaluation: Why we pay SRE candidates to interview all-day

As a team of (mostly) engineers we understand why a growing consensus think the process of hiring for tech is broken. Between us, we’ve interviewed hundreds of times and have our fair share of lacklustre, or downright terrible, interview experiences. When interviewing for SRE it becomes particularly difficult — we’re looking for qualities like empathy…