Site Reliability Engineers (SRE) streamline difficult processes that were previously handled by operations to create a bridge between IT operations and development teams. These engineers typically create dependable and scalable software systems using various automation technologies to eliminate problems. When systems go to the cloud, an SRE engineer is primarily in charge of DevOps automation and standardization. As a result, they have vast practical expertise in system administration or software engineering with IT operations.

The concept of SRE

The term "SRE," or Site Reliability Engineering, was coined in 2003 at Google by Ben Treynor Sloss. It is referred to as "when you treat operations as if they are a software problem."

The development of software systems and the automation of procedures are the main objectives of SRE. As a result, SRE carries out the tasks that operations would typically perform, with the extra advantage of engaging specialised software engineers to handle challenging tasks.

The History of SRE at Google

Google's need to regularly update its many products and services while preserving their continuous availability led to the need for SRE. Ops engineers desired as few issues as possible, while developers wanted to deploy upgrades to production as fast as possible. This caused a dispute that resulted in unending arguments and efforts to work around the systems. This led to the invention of SRE by Ben Treynor Sloss with a series of steps. Which later became the basis of the SRE methodology.

The Role of a Site Reliability Engineer

  • By approaching administrative topics with a software engineer attitude, you may build a bridge between development and operations.
  • They direct the priorities of their organization towards the best interests of their customers.
  • Ensure that they are dependent on reliable and easily accessible services and platforms.
  • Keep an eye on production systems and evaluate their effectiveness to find areas that could use improvement.
  • They create solutions to increase the performance and dependability of websites.
  • They develop and deliver technologies for IT and support departments to run more efficiently.

Key principles of SRE

Due to its collaborative approach between operations and development, SRE operates under a set of principles.

  • Make DevOps CI/CD solution workflows to automate infrastructure scalability.
  • SRE only makes up half of the workload for operations. Instead of putting out fires, at least half of the budget must be used to upgrade the system.
  • Developers will take care of any unnecessary jobs if the workload grows as a result of their mistakes.
  • Along with maintaining quality, build an error budget to help manage the rate at which changes are driven into production.
  • Deep monitoring allows for the observation of latency, saturation, traffic, and problems.
  • In order to handle issues based on symptom-based notifications, develop response scenarios. Create automated runbooks for every scenario and test them frequently to maintain the team's proficiency.
  • Conduct faultless postmortems, and fix any problems you find.
  • The pool of applicants should be shared by the engineering and SRE teams. Give SREs the chance to advance to the level of developers.

Skills set required to become Site Reliable Engineer

It is advised to look for specific skills and technical expertise since SRE is in increasing demand.

  • Knowledge of DevOps architecture and concepts.
  • Expertise in CI/CD implementation.
  • Knowledge about databases.
  • Usage of version control and monitoring tools.
  • Effective problem-solving skills
  • Management and leadership qualities.

SRE Advantages


  • Cultural improvement

Site reliability engineering continuously monitors the system's health and vulnerabilities. It enables you to always seek out the finest options that assist groups, divisions, and services while also fostering teamwork. The corporate culture and the product both benefit from this shared sense of accountability.

  • Boosted automation

A site reliability engineer will always favour automating product engineering processes and updating legacy systems in the most practical and effective manner. They are, nevertheless, implementing the most recent tools and alert systems to improve their own process for identifying system vulnerabilities. As a result, it takes less time to locate, recognize, and fix issues. Over time, the system becomes more dependable due to automation.

  • Proactive troubleshooting

To stay competitive, a lot of businesses rely on innovation and the addition of new features. The risk of having a lot of defects and vulnerabilities, meanwhile, is increased by rapid development and delivery. SRE can be proactive in their approach and find and fix problems before they affect end customers. It saves effort, time, and money.

  • Increased client satisfaction

While DevOps is more focused on internal operations, SREs have the improvement of customer experience as their main objective. A site reliability engineer sets defined targets for satisfying customer expectations using metrics like SLAs, SLOs, and SLIs. Greater product dependability and significant ROI increases will follow from this.