Migrations- often seen as a necessary evil and bain of existence for engineers. Spotify is no exception to the laws (and pitfalls) of migrations that pay down debt and help advance tech strategy. While we share common problems with every other tech org, because of our scale and organizational structures and decisions, we have iterated on a set of principles and processes to ease the pain of transitioning from one tech stack - whether it be as low level as OS or language version - to higher level product features.
Spotify is a globally distributed company with 280+ engineering teams and 1200+ microservices. We’ve had a strong focus on engineering autonomy, and, as such, within our Platform (infrastructure) org, have had to cultivate ways to drive migrations with carrots over sticks. We’ve achieved this through a strong focus on product and product marketing techniques, quantitative insights, and driving a clear value proposition for engineers. We’ll share our learnings (and misses) about how we were able to move molehills and, in some cases, mountains while preserving engineering velocity and a sense of ownership and autonomy.