Laura Nolan

Talk Title: Ditch the Template: Writing Incident Reports They Want to Read

Synopsis: All software systems have bugs and faults, and so, most of us write incident reviews (IRs) or postmortems occasionally. Unfortunately, many IRs are never read by anyone other than those involved in the incident, and therefore have limited benefit. This sort of IR can be a chore to write and to read. It doesn’t have to be this way. This talk will show you how to write the most engaging IR possible by ditching that template and instead using narrative structure to your advantage, supporting the reader appropriately, and creating effective visuals. IRs crafted this way can support learning that will last in your organisation for years (and maybe even beyond your organisation, too).

Speaker Bio: Laura is a software engineer who has focused on reliability for the decade while at Google and Slack working across domains ranging from large data pipelines to edge networks. She has contributed to a number of books including the ‘SRE book’, Seeking SRE, and 97 Things Every SRE Should Know, as well as being a regular columnist for USENIX ;login: magazine. Laura grew up in Dublin, holds degrees from all three of TCD, UCD, and DCU, and currently lives in Kildare in a very unreliable old house.