Nextdoor Keeps Its Own House In Order With PagerDuty

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Size: 100+

Industry: Software & Technology

Location: San Francisco, CA

Customer Since: 2011

Local neighborhoods are the backbone of entire communities, cities and countries. They’re where we learn, work, live and play. Keeping them safe and sound is a top priority, and it’s what Nextdoor does best.

Nextdoor is a private social network where local communities gather online to make their neighborhoods safer, happier and more prosperous. Nextdoor helps locals do everything from report break-ins to recommend local services to organize communal events. They do it so well that over 57,000 neighborhoods in the United States rely on Nextdoor to stay connected with their communities every day.

It’s not just a career for the Nextdoor team. It’s a calling. Which is why the company relies on PagerDuty to keep things in its own backyard running smoothly.

Ideal Neighbors

Nextdoor and PagerDuty have been great neighbors almost from the beginning. The company started using PagerDuty shortly after its public launch in 2011. At that time, the Nextdoor engineering team consisted of five people. And every one of them received a notification when something went wrong with the company’s infrastructure.

That led to missed sleep, miscommunication and, worst of all, missed issues.

“Sometimes, we’d only find out about issues when a customer sent us a note.”

No one was fully accountable for flagged issues, and Nextdoor lacked a way to track or audit them. Different dev teams had different on-call schedules and all needed access to different systems, which further muddied the waters.

When the company’s Head of Operations suggested Nextdoor take a look at PagerDuty to solve the problem, the team was all ears.

A Solution That Grows Up With Nextdoor

Like any good Neighborhood Watch program, PagerDuty immediately started aggregating important issues and flagging them for the right people. Response times dramatically improved. And Nexdoor’s devs knew exactly who was responsible for fixing them.

“It helps us manage in an explicit way who is accountable for being the first line of defense.”

With PagerDuty, Nextdoor now tracks mean time to acknowledge (MTTA) and mean time to resolve (MTTR) metrics that they couldn’t before. The company does rigorous post-mortems based on the data to further improve ops. And devs know exactly how available they need to be.

“As a result, response times are really good.”

The best part? PagerDuty is able to grow up with Nextdoor. The company now has 45 engineers alone. As the team expands, Nextdoor can easily model how PagerDuty will scale with the company, instead of wasting time and energy building complex systems to handle the load.

And no matter how big Nextdoor grows, they can always count on PagerDuty to deliver results.

“PagerDuty is really reliable. We actually do sleep now.”