The entire boot process between distributions was already largely different. I've used Mandriva and now Mageia. The initscripts and more is often taken from Fedora, then adjusted. Somehow sysvinit has the reputation of being the same and portable. But in practice loads of things were different between distributions. The way Mandriva+Mageia booted was already hugely different than Fedora, despite that large parts were taken from Fedora.
Practical thing I'd like to do on a server is ensure via Puppet that the timezone is in UTC (not just the current timezone, also the one for all services, some of which have been started already). Now if you have servers running RHEL, Ubuntu, Debian, Cent OS and Fedora, you'll discover that the only easy way to do this is to rely on Google+hope someone had the same problem.
systemd more and more makes unneeded differences between distributions go away.