Kubernetes Engineer Roles and Responsibilities

DevOps has automated and simplified the development-to-deployment lifecycle. However, when applications become large and more complex, it is the Kubernetes DevOps tool that configures to get the best version of your software out there. Kubernetes is a popular container orchestration tool to scale out service for business needs, providing services across multiple machines without cumbersome network and storage settings.

Kubernetes service mesh provides a flexible and efficient way to manage communication between microservices within a cluster.

For those new to a DevOps role, you must build up a valuable skill set in containers and Kubernetes that will be relevant for years to come. The evolving DevOps roles demand Kubernetes and CI/CD skills that can be learned with a Kubernetes Certification.

The Kubernetes Certification Training Course, founded by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), enhances your Kubernetes skills and gives you credibility for the CKA exam.

The Kubernetes online training is well-suited for software developers, software engineers, system administrators, Linux administrators, and Cloud administrators, who are willing to complete the online Kubernetes course and end-assessment. 

What is Kubernetes

The name Kubernetes originates from the Greek word meaning helmsman or pilot. Google open-sourced the Kubernetes project in 2014, combining over 16 years of Google’s experience running production workloads at scale with best ideas and practices from the community.

The Kubernetes is a portable, extensible, open-source platform for managing containerized workloads and services. Its framework runs distributed systems resiliently, managing scaling requirements, failover, load balancing, logging, and monitoring. However, all this is at the container level rather than at the hardware level. It thus facilitates both configuration and automation and has emerged as an ecosystem that combines best-breed practices for application deployment. 

Kubernetes is a container orchestrator for container platforms like Docker.  Containers solve a critical issue in the life of application development.  When developers migrate from writing code in their local development environment to production, it gives rise to various problems arising from different operating systems, different dependencies, or different libraries. Containers solved this issue of portability by allowing you to separate code from the underlying infrastructure it is running on. The application, including all the bins and libraries, can be packaged into a small container that can run on any computer with a containerization platform. These containers are portable and scalable.

What are the Roles and Responsibilities

The role of the DevOps team is to implement and maintain a Continuous Integration (CI)/ Continuous Delivery/Deployment (CD) environment. In a Kubernetes setting, this involves setting up and maintaining clusters and providing a way to deploy them.

The responsibilities of the Kubernetes Engineer are:

  • To work closely with customers, understand and capture their requirements
  • Design and build distributed systems
  • Contribute and fix bugs in upstream Kubernetes 
  • Work with fellow engineers on the team and the community to enhance deployment 

Kubernetes is open-source with anyone able to contribute with different levels of membership in the community. Membership places roles and responsibilities within the community, with each role requiring more time and commitment. 

The roles are:

  • Anyone: regular contributors to the Kubernetes documentation
  • Members: professionals who can assign and triage issues and provide a non-binding review on pull requests
  • Reviewers: professionals who can lead reviews on documentation pull requests and vouch for the quality of a change
  • Approvers: who can lead reviews on documentation and merge changes


Anyone with a GitHub account can contribute to Kubernetes. 

Roles include:

  • Opening an issue in any Kubernetes repository, including Kubernetes/website
  • Giving feedback on a pull request
  • Contributing to a localization
  • Suggesting improvements 
  • Opening a pull request to improve existing content, adding new content, or writing a blog post or case study
  • Creating diagrams, graphics assets, and embeddable screencasts and videos


A member is someone who has submitted multiple pull requests to the Kubernetes website. Members are a part of the Kubernetes GitHub organization.

Responsibilities include:

  • Doing everything listed above under “Anyone”.
  • Commenting to add the LGTM (looks good to me) label to a pull request
  • Using the HOLD comment to block merging for a pull request
  • Using the ASSIGN comment to assign a reviewer to a pull request
  • Providing a non-binding review on pull requests
  • Using automation to triage and categorize issues
  • Documenting new features


Reviewers are responsible for reviewing open pull requests. It also includes addressing the reviewer’s feedback. Reviewers are members of the @kubernetes/sig-docs-{language}-reviews GitHub team.

The role of Reviewers is:

  • To do everything listed under “Anyone” and “Members”.
  • Review pull requests and provide binding feedback
  • Edit user-facing strings in code
  • Improve code comments

The Reviewer can be a SIG Docs reviewer or a reviewer for docs in a specific subject area.


Approvers review and approve pull requests for merging. Approvers are members of the @kubernetes/sig-docs-{language}-owners GitHub teams.

The role of Approvers includes:

  • To do everything listed under “Anyone”, “Members” and “Reviewers”.
  • Publishing contributor content by approving and merging pull requests using the APPROVE comment
  • Proposing improvements to the style guide
  • Suggesting improvements to docs tests
  • Proposing improvements to the Kubernetes website or other tooling

Additionally, a SIG Docs approver should only leave an LGTM on a change that does not need additional technical review.

This comes with critical responsibilities.

  • Approvers can use the APPROVE command to merges PRs into the repo
  • Make sure that proposed changes meet the contribution guidelines
  • Verify that Netlify tests pass before you APPROVE a PR
  • Visit the Netlify page preview for a PR to make sure things look good before approving
  • Participate in the PR Wrangler rotation schedule for weekly rotations



The rapid change in IT coupled with the newness of many DevOps practices and technologies has created barriers for those who seek a career in DevOps. However, learning these skills can open the door for lucrative positions in DevOps roles.

Kubernetes, for instance, today dominates the container management space to which vendors have incorporated into their products. In the job market, DevOps job listings highlight Kubernetes experience and you must opt to upscale in the relevant skills for better career offerings.

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