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Get started as a User

Learn how to configure your profile, get notifications from Squadcast and view your on-call schedules

Your Role as a User

The user is responsible for taking action on incidents that page you while you are on call.

Your Permissions as a User

User has access to view and edit their user information, view their on-call schedule, and the ability to take action on alerts.

1. Set up your on-call profile

Create your Profile and add Notification Rules

To begin, configure your profile:
Navigate to the My Profile section to define your contact information, time zone, and notification preferences.
After you’ve set up your profile, you can head over to the Incident Notifications Rules section, to create your paging policies.
Important:
Verify your contact information to start receiving notifications from Squadcast.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Use the mobile application to receive push notifications. The app gives you instant access to all details and actions.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Your primary notification rule should be the most attention-grabbing notification method. We recommend using a diverse notification rule (Push, SMS, Phone, Email) with multiple steps to avoid single points of notification failure.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Use a custom notification rule during business hours, that may not require aggressive notifying.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Include a phone call in the last step of your notification rule, as a surefire way of getting alerted and acknowledging the incident.

Download our Mobile App

Explore the mobile and web platforms to get comfortable before beginning your configurations.
The mobile app is available on both App Store and Google Play.

Manage Escalation Policies

Escalation policies help notify you when an incident is triggered.
Squadcast enables you to add time-based Escalation Policies for users, squads (a group of users), or schedules (on-call schedules).
Examples:
  • Website Monitoring
  • Payment Portal Monitoring
  • Backend Issues
The user requires appropriate team-level permission to configure/manage escalation policies, for that team in the organization.
See how to Manage Escalation Policies, here.

Manage Services

Services are at the core of Squadcast. A service represents an application or component that is crucial for your product or service. Services are created with an alert source integration through which incidents are triggered. Squadcast provides a Webhook URL to integrate with the tools you use.
The user requires appropriate team-level permission to configure/manage services, for that team in the organization.
See how to manage services, here.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Only send critical, actionable alerts into Squadcast. Avoid unnecessary or noisy alerts – This will help reduce alert fatigue and make it easier to manage your incidents.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 You can check this nice blog which speaks about How to configure services in Squadcast: Best practices to reduce MTTR.

Configure Integrations

To see the platform in action, integrate one of your existing tools. You can use a generic Email or API integration to get your alerts flowing, or just use one of our native integrations.
You can search through our documentation to find helpful alert source integration guides to walk you through any particular integration.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Make sure you are only sending critical, actionable alerts to Squadcast to avoid alert fatigue and confusion.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Check if your alert source is capable of sending tags/labels in their webhooks, you can use our dynamic tagging rules functions to reflect that on the platform and to use them in better ways.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 We always suggest using Incident webhooks over emails to trigger incidents, this way we can eliminate the dependency on third-party email clients to create incidents.

2. On-call Awareness

View your Escalation Policies

Navigate to Escalation Policy on the side panel to view all the escalation policies set up for your team.

View your Schedule

Navigate to Schedules to get a calendar view of your on-call schedule or check out the My On-Call Shifts widget on the profile page to see when you are on-call.

Create Schedule Overrides

Heading out of town or have a scheduled absence where you will need on-call coverage? Create an override so someone can cover your shift for you.
See how to create schedule overrides, here.

3. Incident Response - Reduce MTTR with faster response

Check out our Incidents Page

The Incidents Details page is where engineers can take action and respond to the triggered incidents.

Respond to an Incident

Once you receive a notification for an incident, you can take several different actions in response.
  1. 1.
    Acknowledge: This will stop the incident from actively paging and continuing through the escalation policy. An acknowledgment signifies that you are aware of an incident and are taking action on it.
  2. 2.
    Resolve: Once the incident is resolved within the monitoring tool it can be resolved within Squadcast. Once resolved any new alert of the same type will trigger a new incident.
  3. 3.
    Reassign: If the incident needs to be addressed by another user or directed to a different escalation policy the reassign option will reroute to the accurate responder.
  4. 4.
    Squadcast Actions: Squadcast Actions are typically used as a means to reduce any customer-impacting issue as soon as possible. See more on Squadcast Actions, here.
  5. 5.
    Mention: @mention specific users or teams in the Notes section to collaborate with them. This is also adding them as Incident Watchers.
  6. 6.
    Communication channels: Add external links to video calls, chatops, and more. Additionally, you can create a dedicated slack channel for an incident using the communications card.
  7. 7.
    Update Status Page: Add status updates to your customers and stakeholders about outages and scheduled maintenance.
  8. 8.
    Runbooks: Create and attach Runbooks to your incidents to document routine procedures and operations for referencing.
  9. 9.
    Tasks: Add tasks to your incidents as instructions or follow-ups for your team members, working on the incident.
  10. 10.
    Start Postmortem: Once an incident is resolved, create a post-incident retrospective as it allows users to learn from major incidents by providing a summary of events that transpired, how the response was handled, and what resolution steps were taken.

4. Incident Response - Noise Reduction & Contextual Awareness

Add Tags to incidents

Incident Tags are used to add more context to your incident and help classify incidents. You can configure tags from Tagging Rules associated with a service. You can configure tagging rules with an incident JSON to automatically add tags when incidents are triggered or you can manually create and update them.
See more about Tagging Rules, here.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 While creating the automation rules, ensure to add the source name under each condition to restrict the rule to apply only to that particular alert source.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 If you use Incident Webhook to create incidents and if you send the Tags, the Tags that were carried by the Webhook will be added to the incidents and not the Tags configured in the platform for that alert source.

Configure Routing Rules for automatic overrides

Alert Routing allows you to configure rules to ensure that alerts are routed to the right responder with the help of event tags attached to each alert. Routing is a part of the rules engine associated with each service. You can access routing rules from a service’s options dropdown. Note that this rule will override the escalation policy attached to the service. This is typically used in cases where severities are configured via tags and each severity type is to be handled by a different level of on-call user.
See more on Routing Rules, here.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Request that your routing rules name(s) follow your Escalation Policy naming convention.

Deduplicate to reduce alert fatigue

Alert Deduplication can help you reduce alert noise by organizing and grouping relevant alerts. This also provides easy access to similar alerts when needed. You can configure deduplication rules with an incident JSON to automatically deduplicate and group similar incidents and can see this reflected on the incident dashboard.
See more about Alert Deduplication, here.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 While creating the automation rules, ensure to add the source name under each condition to restrict the rule to apply only to that particular alert source.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Always arrange your automation rules in the right order based on the priority of how the rules have to be executed.

Suppress non-actionable alerts

Suppression Rules is a part of the Squadcast Rules Engine that allows you to configure rules to automatically suppress non-actionable alerts such as warning, informational, or test alerts. All suppressed data will still be available on the platform.
See more about Suppression Rules, here.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 While creating the automation rules, ensure to add the source name under each condition to restrict the rule to apply only to that particular alert source.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Always arrange your automation rules in the right order based on the priority of how the rules have to be executed.

5. Incident Communication

Set up your Public and Private Status Page

Status Page helps you communicate status updates of your services to your customers and stakeholders about outages and scheduled maintenance.
Status Pages can either be public (accessible by everyone) or private (accessible by just your team on Squadcast) on Squadcast. You can also add a subscription option for your public status page so customers are automatically informed of any updates on the Status Page.
See how to set up Status Pages, here.

Create a Postmortem Report

An Incident Postmortem is a post-incident review that allows users to learn from major incidents by providing a summary of events that transpired, how the response was handled, and what steps were taken to resolve the incident.
You can create an incident postmortem from within an incident page once the incident is resolved. You can choose from several popularly used postmortem templates or create custom templates for your Organization.
See how to create Postmortem templates, here. See how to create Postmortems, here.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Always add all the necessary information while creating a postmortem.
🔹 Best Practice Tip 🔹 Add detailed notes in the Incident Notes section on the Incident Details Page, and star them to attach so that they’ll be present in the postmortem as well.

6. SRE Visibility and Insights

Setup Service Level Objectives (SLOs)

SLOs are used to define and track your service’s performance delivery. Any breach of SLOs will trigger an incident and notify the relevant Users, Squads, or Schedules.
See how to set up SLOs, here.

Analytics and Reporting

Analytics help you view the performance of your Organization/Team, for a given period. It helps gain insights into how your system is functioning and what shape your responders are in.
You can also filter reports based on specific services, tags, and users.
See how to use Analytics, here.