Upgrade to Pro — share decks privately, control downloads, hide ads and more …

Hiring SREs may be literally impossible

Hiring SREs may be literally impossible

If we're gonna do this SRE thing, we need to find the right people to do it.

After a few recent discussions, it became clear just how much everyone—at large companies and small—is struggling to find those people.

You can barely get enough applicants in the door, and by the time you've run your interview process you're left making a handful of offers.

Hiring SREs from the outside world is a competitive, expensive game to play. So why focus so much on people outside your company? You've got potential SREs sat all around you!

In this talk, we'll set the scene with a little look at the realities of hiring SREs. We won't stay there for too long though, because that's not what's going to save us!

The bulk of the talk will be spent looking at ways to discover budding SREs in your organisation, how to nurture their interest, and how to coach them in a role that's new to them.

Chris Sinjakli

August 31, 2017
Tweet

More Decks by Chris Sinjakli

Other Decks in Programming

Transcript

  1. Hi

  2. @ChrisSinjo

  3. Hiring SREs @ChrisSinjo

  4. Hiring SREs may be @ChrisSinjo

  5. Hiring SREs may be literally @ChrisSinjo

  6. Hiring SREs may be literally impossible @ChrisSinjo

  7. An SRE

  8. GOCARDLESS

  9. An conference

  10. An friend

  11. An dumb comment

  12. –Some dumbass “Hiring SREs may be literally impossible”

  13. Except it’s literally true

  14. People at all kinds of companies

  15. People can’t hire quickly enough

  16. 1. The problem 2. A solution

  17. What’s the problem?

  18. "Even by Google’s overall standards, SRE candidates are difficult to

    find and even harder to interview effectively." –SRE Book, Part IV: Management
  19. SRE is weird

  20. Full of breadth

  21. Databases Caches Queues Proxies Networking (L4, L7) DNS Operating systems

    Observability Provisioning Packaging & deployment
  22. etc

  23. https://jvns.ca/blog/so-you-want-to-be-a-wizard/

  24. Full of depth

  25. Knowledge Things

  26. Knowledge Things “That” incident

  27. Knowledge Things “That” incident Your primary database

  28. https://gocardless.com/blog/in-search-of-performance-how-we-shaved-200ms-off- every-post-request/

  29. On-call is daunting

  30. Knowledge Things “That” incident

  31. None
  32. A new take on existing roles

  33. Sure, we have DevOps

  34. DevOps is an approach, not a role

  35. SRE is more specific

  36. How are we doing?

  37. 2017 so far

  38. 2017 so far 160 applicants

  39. 2017 so far 160 applicants 45 VM challenge

  40. 2017 so far 160 applicants 45 VM challenge 15 final

    round
  41. 2017 so far 160 applicants 45 VM challenge 15 final

    round 2 offers
  42. 2017 so far 160 applicants 45 VM challenge 15 final

    round 2 offers 2 hires
  43. The odds are against us

  44. 1. The problem 2. A solution

  45. Where else can we find SREs?

  46. None
  47. Internal hiring is a thing

  48. Some of your devs would love the role

  49. Hi

  50. How do you do it?

  51. 3 parts

  52. Find

  53. Find Show

  54. Find Show Mentor

  55. Find Show Mentor

  56. 3main signals

  57. They jump at tricky problems

  58. None
  59. They peel back the stack

  60. They peel back the stack Proxy App Database OS

  61. They show empathy when things break

  62. GoCardless Slack excerpt

  63. Real talk: People learn things

  64. Find Show Mentor

  65. Find Show Mentor

  66. Build an open operational culture

  67. GoCardless post-mortem excerpt

  68. GoCardless Slack excerpt

  69. “The weird team in the corner”

  70. Projects as well as ops

  71. 20 to 50%

  72. GoCardless project scoping excerpt

  73. “The weird team in the corner”

  74. The public stuff helps

  75. https://gocardless.com/blog/tagged/site-reliability-engineering

  76. It’s for your coworkers too

  77. Take the sting out of the pager

  78. Don’t support a horror show

  79. Post-mortem action items

  80. Bump memory limit ↓ Add connection limiter

  81. Don’t foster a hero culture

  82. None
  83. None
  84. Pay your damn on-call

  85. Find Show Mentor

  86. Find Show Mentor

  87. Part IV: Management

  88. Disaster simulation

  89. https://github.com/gocardless/our-postgresql-setup

  90. Disaster simulation Reverse engineering

  91. They peel back the stack

  92. Disaster simulation Reverse engineering Pager shadowing

  93. None
  94. My favourite: guided tours

  95. Databases Caches Queues Proxies Networking (L4, L7) DNS Operating systems

    Observability Provisioning Packaging & deployment
  96. None
  97. Value Tasks Task value Extremely scientific graph

  98. Tasks Task value Learning value Extremely scientific graph Value

  99. What they bring to you

  100. None
  101. So how’s it going?

  102. 2017 so far 160 applicants 45 VM challenge 15 final

    round 2 offers 2 hires
  103. Our team over time

  104. Our team over time 8 people (former and current)

  105. Our team over time 8 people (former and current) 3

    joined GC as devs
  106. Our team over time 8 people (former and current) 3

    joined GC as devs 2 dev → infra elsewhere
  107. Hi

  108. IT FREAKIN’ WORKS

  109. Hiring SREs may be literally impossible @ChrisSinjo

  110. Hiring enough SREs may be literally impossible @ChrisSinjo

  111. Coach some new ones

  112. Mentoring people is awesome anyway

  113. Thank you $❤ @ChrisSinjo @GoCardlessEng

  114. We’re hiring $❤ @ChrisSinjo @GoCardlessEng

  115. Questions? $❤ @ChrisSinjo @GoCardlessEng

  116. Image credits • Pager - https://www.flickr.com/photos/s_w_ellis/3878337144/ • Seedling - https://www.flickr.com/photos/kmdoncaster/26122812592/

    • Sparkling heart emoji - https://github.com/mozilla/fxemoji/blob/ 9f68ca9c5bc51521f9ffe284e00ba8b7308e2c41/svgs/people/u1F496- sparklingheart.svg • Rubik’s cubes - https://www.flickr.com/photos/le-topographe/4840728643/
  117. Image credits • SRE Book - https://landing.google.com/sre/book.html • Tours start

    here - https://www.flickr.com/photos/mwichary/2210774000/ • Trying To Grow - https://www.flickr.com/photos/garryknight/4423598916/