Welcome!

@DevOpsSummit Authors: Kevin Jackson, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Tim Hinds

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog

@DevOpsSummit: Article

Scaling Incident Management | @DevOpsSummit #DevOps #APM #Monitoring

Incident management is paramount to the success of any modern ITOps team

Scaling Incident Management
By Patrick O'Fallon

Incident management is paramount to the success of any modern ITOps team. However, much like growing a business, scaling incident management can also trigger growing pains. As the landscape of devices, applications, and systems grows - each requiring monitoring - so too, does the alert noise and complexity around management for on-call staff. With an increasing number of engineers on your team, it can be difficult to on-board and implement new notification policies and after-hours operations to ensure your team is efficient and load is fairly distributed. And the push towards hybrid models of IT and bimodal IT environments can also complicate incident management. Nevertheless, with a few tried and true techniques, you can scale incident management in a planned, deliberate, organized, and effective way.

Don't fall victim to your changing ITOps environment
Let's first understand the problem with an example where scaling becomes a serious issue.
You've finally dialed in your incident management process, only to shortly after learn that your company has bought a new business. Now your Ops team is taking over IT for the new environment, in addition to what you're already responsible for. At first glance, you think of the perfect scenario in which you can simply apply the same tools and methodology to this entirely new stack.

However, reality is rarely perfect - the new company may leverage a different tech stack and different incident management monitoring tools and methodologies. While this scenario is incredibly daunting, it's very similar to any growth scenario - whether it be growing your IT team, or adopting more agile and bimodal ITOps structures. Whichever scale scenario you may face, below are some ideas for any organization that is working on scaling their monitoring, incident management, and team.

Identify the main areas of scale
Are you implementing new hardware, software, or services? Are there new complexities within your future state ITOps environment? Has your engineering team just grown? Have you inherited an application in which code errors need to be reported? In all cases, you must identify the areas in which your ITOps team is being forced to scale your operations.

Monitoring Tools
Ensuring coverage of your monitoring tools across your entire stack is paramount to the success of scaling. To adopt to this change, don't be afraid to implement multiple or entirely new monitoring systems outside of your current stack. The goal of these systems is to gain full-stack visibility, and in many cases this requires implementing different monitoring tools in order to appropriately monitor disparate and new systems. But to truly support organized scale, there needs to be a way to normalize, de-dupe, correlate, and gain actionable insights from all this data. All the events generated by these monitoring tools must be centralized in a single hub, from which they can be triaged and routed to the right on-call engineer.

Noise Reduction
When monitoring is in place, the goal is then to understand the data for effective incident resolution. Adjusting the routing behavior across your monitoring tools and configuring the appropriate thresholding is a great next step to ensure your team does not experience alert fatigue once you have implemented new tools. Aggregating this data and suppressing or filtering out non-actionable alerts from paging within a common incident management system is critical to help reduce the noise and enrich the visibility of incidents across your entire stack.

Incident Management
A comprehensive incident management platform will help integrate data from all your tools and grow with you as you scale. It not only unifies all your disparate monitoring alerts into one common system, it supports growth in your engineering team without generating confusion around resource management. Moreover, it helps facilitate more accountability as well as more organized collaboration. As a bonus, you can leverage incident analytics to show your boss how well your ITOps team is managing and resolving outages.

Scale and complexity are not going away
The world of ITOps is evolving rapidly, but one thing is clear - IT teams are being ordered to scale their operations in almost every capacity. Legacy ITOps environments are transitioning to and adopting more hybrid and agile architectures and frameworks. Users are continually demanding faster and more reliable access to data across different devices. As a result, it's necessary for ITOps teams to be equipped with a plan for scaling. Incident management is now a necessity as the stakes of downtime get higher.

The post Scaling Incident Management appeared first on PagerDuty.

More Stories By PagerDuty Blog

PagerDuty’s operations performance platform helps companies increase reliability. By connecting people, systems and data in a single view, PagerDuty delivers visibility and actionable intelligence across global operations for effective incident resolution management. PagerDuty has over 100 platform partners, and is trusted by Fortune 500 companies and startups alike, including Microsoft, National Instruments, Electronic Arts, Adobe, Rackspace, Etsy, Square and Github.

@DevOpsSummit Stories
"Storpool does only block-level storage so we do one thing extremely well. The growth in data is what drives the move to software-defined technologies in general and software-defined storage," explained Boyan Ivanov, CEO and co-founder at StorPool, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 16th Cloud Expo, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, which can process our conversational commands and orchestrate the outcomes we request across our personal and professional realm of connected devices.
While some developers care passionately about how data centers and clouds are architected, for most, it is only the end result that matters. To the majority of companies, technology exists to solve a business problem, and only delivers value when it is solving that problem. 2017 brings the mainstream adoption of containers for production workloads. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben McCormack, VP of Operations at Evernote, discussed how data centers of the future will be managed, how the public cloud best suits your organization, and what the future holds for operations and infrastructure engineers in a post-container world. Is a serverless world inevitable?
ChatOps is an emerging topic that has led to the wide availability of integrations between group chat and various other tools/platforms. Currently, HipChat is an extremely powerful collaboration platform due to the various ChatOps integrations that are available. However, DevOps automation can involve orchestration and complex workflows. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Himanshu Chhetri, CTO at Addteq, will cover practical examples and use cases such as self-provisioning infrastructure/applications, self-remediation workflows, integrating monitoring and complimenting integrations between Atlassian tools and other top tools in the industry.
As DevOps methodologies expand their reach across the enterprise, organizations face the daunting challenge of adapting related cloud strategies to ensure optimal alignment, from managing complexity to ensuring proper governance. How can culture, automation, legacy apps and even budget be reexamined to enable this ongoing shift within the modern software factory? In her Day 2 Keynote at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Aruna Ravichandran, VP, DevOps Solutions Marketing, CA Technologies, was joined by a panel of industry experts and real-world practitioners who shared their insight into an emerging set of best practices that lie at the heart of today's digital transformation.