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Welcome to 2nd line

If you’re new to 2nd line or have not worked with us for a while, here’s a brief introduction to what we do and how we work.

Every Wednesday 3 people from GOV.UK - 2 developers and a shadow developer - join the team to work on 2nd line. An ‘interruptible’ reliability engineer from the RE GOV.UK Infra team also sits with the team. You can check the 2nd line support rota to find out when your shift is.

Your main responsibility is to respond to alerts. You’ll be set up in PagerDuty so that you can be called if there are any urgent alerts during working hours.

It’s also an important opportunity to learn about the GOV.UK stack.

Your shift starts at 9:30 and ends at 17:30. If you need to leave before 17:30, talk to your fellow 2nd liner and the DM to make sure you’re covered.

We have stand-ups at 9.35am and a short retrospective at the weekly handover meeting.

You do not need to be at the 2nd line desks all the time. If you have meetings to attend then attend them. Please let the delivery manager and the team know if you need to work from home and/or when you’ll be away for long periods and be respectful of the amount of work your colleagues may have to pick up while you’re away. If there are lots of alerts, you’ll need to prioritise 2nd line above your meetings.

Shift swaps, working patterns and sickness

2nd line is a team sport.

If you need to swap your shift, it’s your responsibility to ensure that adequate cover is in place.

To do this:

If it’s a day or two, arrange a swap for those days with the developer the week before or after your shift - ensure delivery managers are in the loop.

If you need a whole shift swap, arrange this with another developer from your team.

For either of the above, let the 2nd line delivery manager know so they update Pager Duty and the schedule.

If you cannot make your shift because you’re ill, message the delivery manager and #govuk-2ndline Slack channel.

If your working patterns are not compatible with a 9.30am-5.30pm shift, let your 2nd line team know so they can find extra support.

If you do not work a 5-day week, please talk to your delivery manager to arrange 2nd line cover with another developer on your team.

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