How to Build a Best-in-Class Reliability Program

Reliability impacts every organization, whether you plan for it or not. Leading companies take matters into their own hands and get ahead of incidents by building reliability programs. But since many of these programs are still nascent, how do you know what good looks like?

Compare your current (and planned) efforts to ensure your reliability program checks all the right boxes to make it successful.

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About the Authors

Jordan Pritchard

Director of Infrastructure & Site Reliability Engineering

Michael Kehoe

Architect of reliable, scalable infrastructure

Rodney Lester

Technical Lead, Reliability Pillar of Well Architected Program

Tammy Butow

Principal SRE

Jay Holler

Manager, Site Reliability Engineering

Ramin Keene


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  • Leadership & Strategy
  • Ownership & Handoffs
  • Measurement & Metrics
  • Processes & Policies

  • Incident classification: SEV descriptions and levels, and SEV and time-to-detection (TTD) timelines

  • Organization-wide critical service monitoring, including key dashboards and KPI metrics emails

  • Service ownership and metrics for organizations maintaining a microservices architecture

  • Effective on-call principles for site reliability engineers, including rotation structure, alert threshold maintenance, and escalation practices

  • Chaos Engineering practices to identify random and unpredictable behavior in your system

  • Monitoring and metrics to detect incidents caused by self-healing systems

  • Creating a high-reliability culture by listening to people in your organization

A best-in-class reliability program extends across teams to improve the resiliency and availability of your systems. At the same time, it enables engineering teams to spend less time fighting fires and resolving incidents so they can focus on vital work like new features or innovations.

Gremlin has worked with reliability program leaders at Fortune 100 companies to identify the traits of successful programs. Reliability programs built around these four pillars and 18 traits align organizations, get crucial buy-in, and achieve real, measurable improvements to the reliability of their systems.

Over a decade of collective experience unleashing chaos at companies like

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Avoid downtime. Use Gremlin to turn failure into resilience.

Gremlin empowers you to proactively root out failure before it causes downtime. See how you can harness chaos to build resilient systems by requesting a demo of Gremlin.GET STARTED

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