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Posted over 1 year ago

Sr., Lead, Principal, Site Reliability Engineer, Web Services, Heroku

Location: US Remote

*We are a highly distributed team looking for candidates comfortable working remotely.

About Heroku Web Services

Heroku, a subsidiary of Salesforce, operates the world’s largest Platform as a Service (PaaS), continuously delivering millions of apps with a high volume of deploys per day. Heroku's vision is for developers to focus on their applications and leave operations to us.

Our team is an established development team within Heroku. Our team is responsible for the systems that orchestrate all of the central business logic inside Heroku. When anyone uses Heroku, whether directly hitting our API or using clients like the web dashboard and Heroku CLI, they are talking to the backend systems we maintain.

You will be a member of our team, we are hiring an SRE on our team to guide us through hardening and supporting our production services. Because you will be part of the Web Services team, we will be looking to you for guidance around SRE best practices, multiplying the team's skills, and improving our operational posture. You will be aligning with a nascent SRE team, who is currently developing their charter. You will be an essential part of a feedback loop while the SRE team defines and grows their team.

Who are you?

We’re looking for people who are interested in complex distributed systems­ how they work, how they can work better, how we even know if they’re working at all. We need someone who's spent time working as a developer (writing code with a team to fix operational issues or build features), but who has also spent time on operational concerns (investigating production incidents, creating or updating monitoring and alerting plans for production systems, or investigating performance issues, for instance).

You don't need to have “SRE” in your job title in order to have appropriate skills for this position. You might come from a DevOps environment or have been one of a handful of engineers in a shop so small that everyone does a little of everything. The important thing is that you have experience in both writing code and maintaining systems, and that you're willing to do both of those things in the future. If you're stronger in one area than the other, that's okay.

Be sure to read or skim the Site Reliability Engineering ( book, which we are modeling our team structure around.

  • You need to have worked with complex distributed systems and be familiar with how the internet and web applications work. You don’t have to have built a datacenter or run a large cloud service at a major provider, but you do need to have used cloud services. Running LAN infrastructure or doing client­-side system administration is not enough for this role.

  • Willing to work on a distributed (currently all ­remote) team spanning multiple time zones. None of us currently lives in the same place or works out of the San Francisco headquarters; all of us are experienced remote workers.

  • Comfortable reading and writing code with a team in at least one of Ruby, Go, Python, or Erlang. It's fine if you know more than one of those languages and/or other languages, but they are the four most important languages at Heroku. We need people who are comfortable with them, and open to switching between them.

What's this job like?

This job is open to people anywhere in North America. You can work at a Salesforce office or work from home. Aspects of the role include:

  • Actively developing Service Level Objectives (SLOs) for our most critical services of the platform where they don't currently exist and defining minimum standards for service health metrics

  • We are readying ourselves for the SRE Entrance process in order to hand off the operation of a production service to the SRE team. We expect your role will help define this process and handoff.

  • The team will be on call for multiple production services, this includes:

    • Responding to pages generated by automated monitoring and alerting

    • Responding to pages created manually by other engineers and support personnel

    • Joining an incident response team as a Subject Matter Expert and working with other SMEs and an Incident Commander to resolve the issue (we'll train you for this)

  • Other likely projects include:

    • Automated data and service management tooling

    • Instrumenting for observability for troubleshooting

    • Implementing performance improvements

    • Hardening for resilience in the face of operational events and customer behavior

How do I know if I should apply?

If you have experience with any of the following topics, you should apply!

  • Experience with AWS services like EC2, ELB, EKS, S3 (or their Azure or GCP equivalents­ OpenStack experience is fine too)

  • Databases and big data stores, especially Postgres or Kafka REST APIs


  • Monitoring, instrumentation, or observability

  • Standard parts of a web app's stack, such as TCP/IP, DNS, HTTP, etc.

  • Cloud computing patterns (and how they're different than using hardware)

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