Chapter 80. The Power of Uniformity

Chris Evans, Suhail Patel, and Miles Bryant

Every organization wants to move fast, so it’s important to understand the things that can slow it down. In SRE, those often derive from one or more among friction in making changes or understanding how to, complexity of the operational domain, and freedom of choice. At Monzo, uniformity is the key to keeping us moving; uniformity has led to consistency, consistency has led to focus, and focus has allowed us to build the fastest growing bank the UK has ever seen.

Like all startups, we began with a small group of engineers responsible for the entirety of the company’s technology, from the low-level physical infrastructure to the microservices serving customer requests. With a small team and a blank canvas, we needed to focus our effort where it was needed most—on building a bank. The layering of standard approaches simply meant we became increasingly efficient at solving actual customer problems. Rather than starting from zero on each iteration, we could focus our efforts on the 10% that really made a difference.

This isn’t about stamping out freedom of choice or imposing unnecessary constraints on ...

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