CRE – Cloud Reliability Engineering

January 12, 2024

When a Cloud Service Provider (CSP) delivers cloud services to enterprises, they guarantee the reliability of those services such as compute, storage, database, network, etc., through service-level agreements (SLAs) for promised levels of performance and uptime.

When organizations adopt cloud services and deploy their own solutions/applications / productized services and customizations to run on the cloud services, end-to-end reliability becomes the responsibility of the enterprises. As the cloud brings extreme agility with everything on code, managing the reliability with the traditional operations approach will prove inefficient, and it needs a new method of execution. Cloud Reliability Engineering as competency helps enterprises to adopt the right set of processes, tools, and skills to manage the cloud reliability.

What is reliability?

Reliability in cloud computing is a measure of the probability that the service or solution delivers what it is designed for. This implies that it is available, and performs in the way intended.

When you access an app or service in the cloud, you can reasonably expect that:

  • The application or service is up and running.
  • Can be accessed what you need from any device at any time from any location.
  • There will be no interruptions or downtime.
  • Your connection is secure.
  • You will be able to perform the tasks you need to get your job done.

Factors like these measure the reliability of your cloud offerings. In the real world, we will see faults from things such as server downtime, software failure, security breaches, user errors, and other unexpected incidents.

Cloud reliability engineering helps to address all these factors to achieve the desired level of reliability.

What is Cloud Reliability Engineering?

Site Reliability Engineering is an engineering discipline devoted to helping an organization sustainably achieve the appropriate level of reliability in its systems, services, and products. DevOps combines development (Dev) and operations (Ops) to unite people, processes, and technology in application planning, development, delivery, and operations.

Cloud Reliability Engineering combines the principles of SRE and the process of DevOps to build a reliable cloud platform.

Fundamentals of Cloud Reliability Engineering:

The fundamental phases of CRE are Design, Build & Operate. Each phase is a combination of tools & processes combined to deliver the CRE principles.

  • Design cloud infrastructure & platform based on a Well-architected framework to build the most secure, high-performing, resilient, and efficient cloud infrastructure. The key pillars of the framework are;
  • Operational excellence
  • Security
  • Reliability
  • Performance efficiency
  • Cost optimization
  • Sustainability
  • Build phase of cloud platform based on the Well-architected design with the emphasis on automation of cloud Infra provisioning and application deployment, re-usability of assets, self-service provisioning of cloud resources to empower development teams.
  • Operate phase includes intelligent monitoring, proactive defect prevention, and reduced human operation work with help of automation.

All these 3 fundamental phases of CRE are designed to deliver:

  • Centralized governance of Cloud platform
  • Reliable & secure cloud platform
  • Self-reliant development/business teams for resource provisioning
  • Reduced “Toil” of the operations team
  • Operational excellence by continuous automation & enhancements

Characteristics of Cloud Reliability Engineering:

Cloud Reliability Engineering’s key characteristics include effective design, execution, and maintenance of systems implemented in the cloud, primarily focused on reliability and availability of cloud services, multi-cloud management according to best practices in governance, security, and cost control.

A Cloud reliability engineer should possess the following skill sets:

  • Multi-cloud platforms experience
  • Operations experience – with deploying, supporting, and monitoring new and existing services, platforms, and application stacks
  • Configuration management experience – with tools such as Puppet, Chef, Fabric, Ansible, etc.
  • Experience in infrastructure as code software tools such as Terraform/Ansible, etc.,
  • Design & implementation experience in DevOps – Adopt best practices, and establish standards and policies for managing source code and continuous integration/delivery.
  • Experience in chaos engineering to test the resiliency of the system by defining the steady state, introducing chaos, and validating the steady state
  • Attitude to drive improvements to processes and design enhancements for automation to continuously improve the cloud environment.
  • Ability to foresee the evolution of the future system and embed sustainability through mechanisms like automation, and evolve systems by pushing for changes by adopting new tools and processes
  • Ability to collaborate with all technical, service delivery, and thought leadership to develop and maintain cloud operational excellence.
  • Ability to design autonomous security and monitoring operations

Our approach to CRE adoption:

We provide an agile approach to adopting CRE principles and developing a CRE framework with key focus areas such as reliability, security & governance, and operational excellence. CRE framework adoption is done in 4 phases as below.

  • Assess the scope of the CRE framework by defining SLI/SLO, error budget, etc.
  • Integrate the CRE principles to customers’ existing processes and engage with customers’ existing IT team.
  • Develop CRE framework using automation, application life cycle management, monitoring, security enhancements, and governance
  • Operate, an ongoing task to continuously improve cloud solutions and operational enhancements.

How can we help

We at Codincity have the expertise with CRE; using our specialized frameworks we can help you to design a reliable & secured cloud platform and enhance your operational excellence. Please reach out to us at to hear more about CRE and our demonstrated CRE capabilities.

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