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April 27 2022

Evolution of the Site Reliability Engineer

Blog Details

Invention & Innovation Spreads

Any invention at a hyperscaler first gets adopted by (relatively) smaller technology companies and Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) and ISVs have problems similar to hyperscalers but not at their scale. 

The true transformation happens at the next level of adoption when technology makes it to practitioners. Practitioners are companies whose primary business is not to sell software but to use technology to improve their business operations. Since "software is eating the world", these companies are super-heavy users of technology. They also evaluate every technology purely from the business value perspective.


The Leveling of the Playing Field

Organizations work best when each member is empowered and respected. Engineering organizations always had a huge class divide between developers and “mortals” (the folks in quality assurance, release teams, production support teams, analysts, and everyone in between). 

The issue of being mortal means that you don’t have a right to innovate. You are simply supposed to follow the process. This is an opportunity loss for both team members and the organization.

Site reliability engineering and DevOps both changed it by applying software principles and practices to operations. It not only improved the process but also provided non-core developers an opportunity to be more skilled and help in innovation.