Monitoring Survey - Demographics

In an earlier post I talked about my recent monitoring survey and the background to it. In this post, the first of several posts analyzing the results, I am going to look at the demographics of the responses.

The survey got 1,016 responses of which 866 were complete and my analysis only includes complete responses.

This post will cover the questions:

1. Which of the following best describes your IT job role?
2. How big is your organization?
3. Are you responsible for IT monitoring in your organization
4. If you aren't responsible for IT monitoring, then who is responsible?

Everyone was required to answer questions one to three. If they answered “No” to question three then they were prompted with question four. Otherwise they moved onto the next question on the form.

Job Roles

Roles

Operations and SysAdmins staff represented 49% of the respondents with the next largest group being DevOps1 at 33% of respondents. There was also a smaller group, 9.2%, of respondents who reported themselves as Developers. The bias towards Operations roles may be related to the communities where the survey was distributed. But it also may be related to Operations being the traditional owners of monitoring.

I also merged some data in the Manager category by merging a variety of roles: CEO, CIO, CTO, IT Manager, etc into a single Manager category. I also merged several people who reported themselves as SRE’s into the Operations and SysAdmin category.2

Organization Size

I also asked respondents about the size of their organization.

Company Size

The results are reasonably well distributed across organizations of various sizes. The largest group, 29.9%, is small organizations of 1 to 50 employees. Closely behind this, at 27.4%, is slightly larger organizations of 50 to 250 employees. In the third place is organizations of larger than 1000 employees at 23.4%.

Roles by Organization Size

I also created an overlay of roles distributed by organization size.

Roles by Organization Size

The graph reveals some interesting data, especially the slightly higher distribution of developers responding from smaller organizations and the more visible presence of architects and security folks in larger enterprises.

Monitoring Responsibility

I also asked respondents if they were responsible for monitoring or if the task belonged to someone else.

Responsibility for Monitoring

Quite a large group, 82% of respondents, were responsible for monitoring. A further 15% of respondents were not responsible for monitoring. A small group, 2.5% of respondents, indicated that their organization did not do monitoring at all.

In the case where respondents were not responsible for monitoring I asked them to indicate which groups were responsible. The respondents could specify all the groups that were involved in monitoring. I’ve rolled up the multiple responses into a summary graph.

Other Responsibility for Monitoring

These results reflect the distribution of roles established by respondent’s who do manage monitoring. A new category, Monitoring Team, also emerged in these results. This role seems to be more prevalent in larger organizations, with 61% of people who reported that a Monitoring Team was responsible for monitoring were from an organization of 1000+ employees.

In the next post I’ll be looking at the tools identified in the survey.


  1. Y’all know “DevOps” is not a role right? [return]
  2. If you’re an SRE and don’t agree I am happy to debate but given it was a very small group… [return]
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