Off the Beaten Path: Moving Observability Focus from Your Service, to Your Customer

Monday, December 07, 2020 - 12:40 pm1:20 pm

Mohit Suley, Microsoft


Observability systems are usually designed to answer two broad questions - 'Is my service doing OK?', and - 'Is my business doing OK?'. There is a third perspective that often doesn't get enough attention (unless it's clearly linked to the first two) - 'Is my Customer Experience OK?'. It is fair to say that there's never a clear metric for this question.

This talk explains our motivation for stepping out of our metrics-centered 'comfort zone' and the journey that ensued: developing a habit of engaging face-to-face with some of our customers; figuring out ways to experience what they did; open-sourcing a high-scale tool to capture this data; setting up broader direct-to-team channels of communication from customers; and, re-thinking performance metrics.

If you are curious about why being a Customer Advocate makes you a better SRE, this talk is for you.

Mohit Suley, Microsoft

Mohit is an Engineering Manager on Bing's UX Foundation team. Designing systems to proactively improve availability and make customers happy is a core mission for them. In his spare time, he loves to go for long walks, tinkers with hardware, and chases his unachievable goal of reading more books than Bill Gates.

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@inproceedings {262237,
author = {Mohit Suley},
title = {Off the Beaten Path: Moving Observability Focus from Your Service, to Your Customer},
booktitle = {SREcon20 Americas (SREcon20 Americas)},
year = {2020},
url = {},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = dec

Presentation Video