November 22, 2016

5 Ways to Hone your Production Incident Postmortems

I’ve messed up many times, as has everyone else on my team. There have been outages, oversaturated content, and frustrated users. We’ve put out a lot of fires. And we’ve done a lot of postmortems afterward.

“What’s a postmortem?”

I’m delighted you asked! Postmortems, also referred to less deathly as “root cause analysis,” are a way of retrospecting on a particular incident or failure. They help to better understand what went wrong and – crucially – how it can be avoided in the future. We’ve found that a few guidelines are necessary for getting maximum value from postmortems:

  • Postmortems are blameless. Nobody is singled out for fault....

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