The following page may contain information related to upcoming products, features and functionality. It is important to note that the information presented is for informational purposes only, so please do not rely on the information for purchasing or planning purposes. Just like with all projects, the items mentioned on the page are subject to change or delay, and the development, release, and timing of any products, features or functionality remain at the sole discretion of GitLab Inc.
Downtime is expensive - it costs companies hundreds of thousands of dollars, or more, in a single hour.
While downtime avoidance is preferable, downtime is not avoidable. As such, it is imperative that organizations are geared towards being able to respond to production problems efficiently and effectively. Put another way, organizations need to be resilient.
The majority of investment and focus of the DevOps industry (including GitLab) to date has been on downtime avoidance. There are some entrenched competitors approaching incident management from the perspective of workflows (ServiceNow), or incident notification (Pager Duty, OpsGenie). Despite this, holistic incident management products are lacking resulting in many organizations stitching together point solutions mixed with a healthy dose of DIY. We believe that many organizations are looking for ways to avoid reinventing the wheel on incident management
GitLab Incident Management helps teams build resiliency in their software and processes against downtime, outages, and other unexpected situations.
We plan to achieve this by:
As we invest R&D in building out Incident Management at GitLab, we are faced with the following challenges:
We are uniquely positioned to take advantage of the following opportunities:
Our current Incident Management tools have been built for users who align with our Allison (Application Ops) and Devon (DevOps Engineer) personas. The experience targets DevOps teams at smaller companies where it is common for the engineers to be on-call and responding to alerts for the software that they also write code for. As we mature this category, we will evolve the experience to appeal to and serve the enterprise customer.
How are we tracking success?
How are we tracking success?
Incident Management is a broad category. The following diagram explains all functionality that is currently within scope for our vision of the category.
We are currently working to mature the Incident Management category from
complete. Definitions of these maturity levels can be found on GitLab's Maturity page. The following epics group the functionality we have planned to mature Incident Management.
In GitLab FY22-Q3, the Monitor group is focused on enabling dogfooding of the incident issue type and improving incidents beyond GitLab's standard issue. In the coming milestones, the team plans to build Incident Timelines, and focus on Alert Improvements & Follow-ups and Incident Improvements & Follow-ups, for the incident issue type, to further enable the GitLab infrastructure team to more efficiently respond to incidents for GitLab.com.
Interested in learning more? Please follow along in this epic to contribute to our plan.
We are actively dogfooding Incident Management features with the Infrastructure team. Today, the Infrastructure team relies partially on PagerDuty to maintain GitLab.com and the other services they are responsible for. Ultimately the joint goal of the Infrastructure team and the Respond group is for the Infrastructure team to rely soley on GitLab Incident Management. Our plan to achieve this goal is as follows:
|General Feature||Specific Feature||Dogfooding?||Example||Feature needs 'x' to dogfood|
|Incidents||Incident issue Type||✅|
|Creating incidents manually||✅|
|Creating incidents automatically||✅||Sample incident created via ops.gitlab.net|
|Creating incidents via the PagerDuty webhook||🔴|
|Incident List||🔴||Labels need to be included on the incident list.|
|Metrics Tab||🔴||There isn't a working integration with our observability vendor. Metrics are added as screen shots (example) to the incident.|
|Alert details Tab||🔴||Not currently dogfooding GitLab alerts|
|Service Level Agreement countdown timer||🔴||SLAs aren't based on a per incident basis|
|Alert List||🔴||Dependent on dogfooding alerts.|
|Alert Details Tab||🔴||Dependent on dogfooding alerts.|
|Metrics Tab||🔴||Dependent on dogfooding alerts.|
|HTTP Endpoints||🔴||Mapping a complex payload to the custom mapping was cumbersome. Alerts showed a new alert when the payload changed.|
|Grouping of identical alerts||🔴||Dependent on dogfooding alerts. Looking for the ability to manually add similar alerts to the same incident.|
Marketing and Sales Enablement material can be found here.
Features in the Incident Management category have been placed in tiers based on GitLab's Buyer Based Tiering strategy. The following pricing plan represents existing and future features.
|Generic HTTP Endpoint||✅||✅||✅|
|Multiple HTTP endpoints||✅||✅|
|Multiple email endpoints||✅||✅|
|External Prometheus integration||✅||✅||✅|
|Add custom mapping for alert formats to endpoints||✅||✅|
|Special bi-directional out of the box integrations with popular monitoring tools||✅|
|Manual Incident Creation||✅||✅||✅|
|Incident creation based on limited criteria (e.g. integration or severity)||✅||✅|
|Incident creation based on extensive criteria||✅|
|Incident payload transformations||✅|
|ON-CALL SCHEDULE MANAGEMENT|
|Create multiple schedules||✅||✅|
|Escalation policies||✅ (single)||✅ (multiple)|
|Routing rules for alerts||✅|
|Link runbooks to alerts via simple URL input - link appears in alert||✅||✅||✅|
|Automatically render linked runbooks in alerts/incidents||✅||✅|
|Create new runbook when creating alert||✅||✅|
|Name of Competitor||Year Founded||Relative Links|
|Atlassian Opsgenie||2012||Website Link|
|Grafana OnCall (Previously Amixr)||2018, acquired by Grafana in 2021||Website Link|
|Splunk On-Call (Previously VictorOps)||2021, acquired by Splunk in 2018||Website Link|
Analyst firms such Gartner and 451 have recently published articles on the rising prevalence of automation in incident response workflows.
Gartner's recent research study titled Automate Incident Response to Enhance Incident management, focuses on the importance of leveling up manual incident response processes with automation: "Organizations targeting best-in-class incident management must address the manual processes and collaboration challenges between teams.” They go on to outline some of their key findings which highlight that “I&O organizations are looking to enhance incident response by focusing on automation, third-party integration, stakeholder management and improved detection response feedback loops.”
Their recommendations include the following:
Gartner, Automate Incident Response to Enhance Incident management, By: Venkat Rayapudi & Steve White, Published 18 September 2020
Competitors (listed above in competitive landscape) enable the automation of these processes to different extents. Automattion functionality is typically offered with higher pricing tiers across the board. In order to take advantage of these automation features, companies must invest significant time in the configuration and fine-tuning of systems and processes.
In the near term, GitLab is positioned to enable Gartner’s recommendations for a best in-class incident management platform via the centralization of on-call schedule management to enable the automatic routing of alerts to the right responders at the right time. When we begin working on maturing Incident Management to Lovable (plan) we will be adding rule sets that enable users to automate the creation of actionable incidents.
451 Research published an article on the acquisition of Rundeck by PagerDuty in September 2020. Read more about this on Rundecks website. This was a strategic move to meet the demands of the enterprise for more automation in incident response.
GitLab has plans to investigate using Rundeck for Runbooks via gitlab#36655, this will be interesting opportunity to connect the PagerDuty lifecycle into GitLab Runbooks and Monitoring capabilities.
There is an existing landscape of comparable tools and even "ServiceNow and xMatters have orchestration engines that can be deployed to build workflows across tools, but they aren't typically extensively used to execute remediations." VictorOps (owned by Splunk) and OpsGenie (owned by Atlassian) are other similar tools with visions like PagerDuty.