SRE Anti-Pattern: “Do it. Do it again. Then do it again.”

In this edition of SRE Anti-Patterns, I'm highlighting one of the easiest types of wastes to spot: repetitive requests.

Whether you informally poll your colleagues or analyze your ticket system, you can quickly identify requests that are made over and over again.

Automating these requests provides obvious time savings. However, when you put that automation behind a self-service interface, the benefits grow exponentially.


Before Self-Service Operations

When the requestor uses self-service, it spares the person who otherwise would have fielded the request from interruptions and expensive context switching. On top of that, the person who otherwise would have fielded the request is able to use their knowledge and experience to address other work.

For the person making the requests, self-service also eliminates waiting. Waiting is expensive as it not only delays a person's future work, but it delays feedback on previous work. As we’ve seen in Lean, Agile, and DevOps, slower feedback leads to lower quality and higher risk.


With Self-Service Operations

You can get started by analyzing your ticket system to get a list of the most frequent requests. From there you can evaluate which of those repetitive requests are the most disruptive and which are the easiest to automate.

Next, have the persons who are most familiar with fulfilling those requests collaborate on the scripts to create an automated response. Finally, plug those scripts into your Self-Service Operations platform and give requesters access.

One of the primary benefits of using Rundeck is that you can quickly turn the simplest of scripts into powerful self-service without having to learn new skills or go through a retooling project. Plug what you've already got into Rundeck and get started today.


Other editions of the "SRE Anti-Patterns" series:

SRE Anti-Pattern: "The Dogpile"
SRE Anti-Pattern: "I Could Fix It, If I Could Get To It"
SRE Anti-Pattern: "I'm An Expert, I Don't Check The Wiki."