Alternatives to PagerDuty
June 10, 2013 2:42 PM   Subscribe

Are there any alternatives to PagerDuty (other than building something from scratch on my own)?

PagerDuty sucks. They have an extremely simple and straightforward product... that doesn't work well for my organization. The sole killer feature for me is the ability to temporarily remove people from an on-call schedule (i.e. Joe is on vacation, skip him in the on-call rotation). They don't have this, and I have little hope they will add it.

What other options do I have? The best I've come up with is 'build my own administration panel that sets on-call schedules in PagerDuty via the API' which is notably awful sounding. Please hope me.
posted by wrok to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
We just have a calendar where we list people's duties like a vacation. I have it today through Friday; Person B has it Saturday and Sunday, yada yada.

Do you have any other calendars for resources as opposed to people? Conference rooms, projectors/laptops, etc.?
posted by Madamina at 2:50 PM on June 10, 2013

Isn't this what Exceptions are used for?

When Joe goes on vacation, it's his responsibility to find someone to cover/swap his oncall shift and create an exception.

You can't just remove Joe from the rotation because that will rearrange all future oncall shifts, and this is much more disruptive to everyone else - esp as they already planned their vacations, appts, etc around the current oncall schedule.

If you wanted to temporarily remove Joe from the schedule and maintain the existing schedule (to avoid disrupting everyone), then you have to find someone to fill in Joe's shift in the schedule...and that's called an exception :)

n.b. I wrote the original (internal corporate) tool that PagerDuty copied, so am familiar with many, many use cases
posted by jpeacock at 3:23 PM on June 10, 2013

Response by poster: So, the way that we use PD is to schedule several layers of rotating 4-hour on-call shifts. This basically renders overrides/Exceptions useless. I really, really want to be able to just say 'skip this person' and not mess with the schedule.
posted by wrok at 7:24 PM on June 10, 2013

So 'skip this person' means that there would be no oncall scheduled for when the person was originally scheduled? (and then it would escalate to another layer, I assume)?

Yeah, the closest that PD has is "restrictions", but that's a recurring thing that applies to schedules and not users. You need a restriction that applies to the user and has fixed dates.

Sorry I couldn't find a workaround, good luck!
posted by jpeacock at 1:41 PM on June 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

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