Changes… #DevOps, #SRE, and #Management

As many of you know, I’ve been slowly changing focus from database administration to DevOps, management, and service operations. Over the last few years, I’ve been heavily involved with migrating our datacenter to a private cloud infrastructure, and focusing on methods to improve the overall reliability and scalability of my company’s service deliverables. I’ve been a bit of an evangelist for organizational changes, and it’s finally official.

On October 1, my job title and responsibilities will officially change from Manager of Database Administration to Senior Manager, System and Network Administration. I think that title’s a bit funny, because I won’t be managing system or networks; our infrastructure is managed by another team, and my team is responsible for applying principles of Site Reliability Engineering to operating our complex business services. Unofficially, we’re calling ourselves Service Reliability Engineering in order to remind ourselves (and others) of our foci:

  • Identifying issues that impact the reliability of customer facing services;
  • Tracking and documenting complex relationships between applications used in that delivery; and
  • Coordinating efforts with other teams responsible for developing and operating those services

The title change itself is a minor issue, but it’s an important distinction to me. It represents a significant shift in my career path. Although I’ve been acting as the IT Operations manager for the last two years, it’s always felt a little odd because I was still known as the DBA manager. With the move to the cloud, most of our administration (like backups, DR, and maintenance) are handled by another group, and we’re responsible for making sure that the applications (all 84 of them) perform appropriately. We’re not coders, but we need to be able to identify coding issues. We’re not network or sys admins, but we need to know how systems work, and be able to propose solutions to scalability issues. We’re not DBA’s, but we need to be able to express data requirements to the new DBA team. In short, we’re an integration point for a loosely coupled set of applications.

I plan to blog more on Service Reliability Engineering in the future, but for now, I’m excited about what’s happening.

September 29, 2017 · stuart · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Professional Development

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