As we enter post-pandemic recovery, now is the perfect time to address any technical debt your organisation may be carrying. Technical debt uses shortcuts as opposed to a more involved approach that would take a longer time. It should be addressed and just like financial debt, it accumulates interest in many forms, some of which are mentioned below. It becomes more of an issue in the long-term when some projects are delayed in order to hit today’s deadlines. It can be so easy to go for the quickest and cheapest option (such as ‘off the shelf’ products), the danger of this is that you could end up with costly consequences as a result. Managing this effectively enables a more streamlined and prepared approach.
The debt can manifest in multiple ways:
- Cutting corners when building software
- Lack of tests
- Not checking for bugs
- Increased man-hours
- Poorly written code
- Not following best practices or infrastructure consideration
- Not using the correct technologies to make optimal use of the software
How can I stop technical debt spiralling out of control?
Unfortunately, unlike financial debt, there is no quick fix to simply setting up paying off your debt and nobody can avoid it entirely, but there are ways you can be more prepared. A great way to avoid technical debt is with the practice of Agile software development. The concept of Agile is the creation of backlogs that break down tasks for a software development team. Maintaining a backlog can act as a way for management to make sure tasks are targeted towards the technical debt. This allows focus time on improving factors within your software and making the most of the developer’s time and efforts to help your software have longevity.
Another great consideration is a systems health check to make sure everything is running smoothly or looking at areas where improvements can be made. This will not only keep the costs down in the long run but allow you to build a strategy that ensures when technology and software evolve, you are well prepared.
Technical debt checklist:
- Acknowledge the existence of debt
- Define and assess the debt
- Discover how you can ‘pay off’ the debt
- Map out the architecture of your software
- Look to set up automated tests using Agile practices
- Monitor and continue to look for improvements
Like financial debt and interest, the same goes for increasing technical debt and the longer things are delayed, the more costly and time-consuming the fix can be. By reducing technical debt your business and team reduce data security risks, improve agility and discover new opportunities to have software that is prepared for anything the future throws at it.
Are you worried about the potential technical debt you’ve accumulated? Get in contact with us to discuss your requirements and how we can help offer bespoke software solutions that ensure you are as productive, and profitable as possible.