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Maps, Context, and Tribal Knowledge: On the Structure and Use of Post-Incident Analysis Artifacts in Software Development and Operations

Reed, J Paul LU (2018) FLMU06 20172
Division of Risk Management and Societal Safety
Abstract
The role, functions, and mechanisms of post-incident and post-accident learning within organizations has been widely studied in various industries. With the increasing role software plays in society, large-scale software development and operations practices and organizations are having a larger impact on day-to-day life; despite this, organizational learning has not been widely examined within this context.

This research involves a two-pronged methodology to investigate organizational learning within, specifically, the software development and operations industry: first, an industry survey collected broad industry data regarding post-incident analysis language, usage, and template artifacts; second, this survey served as a basis for a... (More)
The role, functions, and mechanisms of post-incident and post-accident learning within organizations has been widely studied in various industries. With the increasing role software plays in society, large-scale software development and operations practices and organizations are having a larger impact on day-to-day life; despite this, organizational learning has not been widely examined within this context.

This research involves a two-pronged methodology to investigate organizational learning within, specifically, the software development and operations industry: first, an industry survey collected broad industry data regarding post-incident analysis language, usage, and template artifacts; second, this survey served as a basis for a deep organizational case-study involving three distinct teams at a well-known Internet software development and operations company.

The survey identifies some post-incident analysis behavioral and artifact-usage trends, including three specific archetypes of post-incident analysis templates: the ‘Record-Keeper,’ the ‘Facilitator,’ and the ‘Sign-Post.’

The organizational case study examines the specific mechanisms of post-incident organizational learning, including use of template artifacts to map the company’s complex, emergent socio-technical system, share intra- and inter-team context in lieu of static lists of incident remediation items, and use post-incident artifacts to curate organizational culture and transmit tribal knowledge between organizational actors. Other uses are also identified.

Together, these uses provide a set of existence proofs for various methods and mechanisms for how a high-performing software development and operations organization uses, at least in part, its post-incident artifacts to aid in and sustain organizational learning. (Less)
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author
Reed, J Paul LU
supervisor
organization
course
FLMU06 20172
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
Incident analysis, incident artifacts, incident retrospectives, Internet operations, organizational learning, post-incident reviews, postmortems, tribal knowledge, software development, software operations, FLMU06
language
English
id
8966930
date added to LUP
2019-02-06 11:20:38
date last changed
2019-02-06 11:20:38
@misc{8966930,
  abstract     = {The role, functions, and mechanisms of post-incident and post-accident learning within organizations has been widely studied in various industries. With the increasing role software plays in society, large-scale software development and operations practices and organizations are having a larger impact on day-to-day life; despite this, organizational learning has not been widely examined within this context.

This research involves a two-pronged methodology to investigate organizational learning within, specifically, the software development and operations industry: first, an industry survey collected broad industry data regarding post-incident analysis language, usage, and template artifacts; second, this survey served as a basis for a deep organizational case-study involving three distinct teams at a well-known Internet software development and operations company.

The survey identifies some post-incident analysis behavioral and artifact-usage trends, including three specific archetypes of post-incident analysis templates: the ‘Record-Keeper,’ the ‘Facilitator,’ and the ‘Sign-Post.’

The organizational case study examines the specific mechanisms of post-incident organizational learning, including use of template artifacts to map the company’s complex, emergent socio-technical system, share intra- and inter-team context in lieu of static lists of incident remediation items, and use post-incident artifacts to curate organizational culture and transmit tribal knowledge between organizational actors. Other uses are also identified.

Together, these uses provide a set of existence proofs for various methods and mechanisms for how a high-performing software development and operations organization uses, at least in part, its post-incident artifacts to aid in and sustain organizational learning.},
  author       = {Reed, J Paul},
  keyword      = {Incident analysis,incident artifacts,incident retrospectives,Internet operations,organizational learning,post-incident reviews,postmortems,tribal knowledge,software development,software operations,FLMU06},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Maps, Context, and Tribal Knowledge: On the Structure and Use of Post-Incident Analysis Artifacts in Software Development and Operations},
  year         = {2018},
}