- Deliberate and reckless: This particular situation occurs when the software development team is aware of the loopholes but focuses more on speedy delivery than on organized code.
- Deliberate and prudent: This generally refers to those times when the debt is small and less impactful; thus, the team decides to prioritize delivery and deal with the consequences later.
- Inadvertent and reckless: A classic case of inexperience and lack of expertise – this is the debt you may accrue if your team lacks knowledge and have no idea they are committing mistakes.
- Inadvertent and prudent: A lesson learned but a tad bit late. This case is when your team realizes the mistakes but after the delivery.
Here are two things that we learn from this quadrant:
- Reckless technical debt needs to be avoided at all costs.
- While the prudent part looks friendly and manageable, it is still important to keep measuring technical debt of this kind and keep it under control.
Now that we know more about how technical debt accrues, we must also delve deeper into what causes it.
In the next section, we explore what loopholes result in technical debt in an organization.
What are the causes of technical debt?
Time constraint: We all know that our teams have immense pressure to reduce time to market. Usually, they end up avoiding a few critical steps and accrue technical debt consciously to make it to the clients’ timeline.
Changing demands: A project starts with certain requirements and specifications. But in today’s scenario, they keep evolving with changing trends and customer needs. After a point, it becomes difficult to keep bug-free; as a result, technical debt accumulates.
Complex code: Software development is not a cakewalk! On top of it, technologies become obsolete quicker than ever nowadays. The usage of complex code with several languages is a definite step towards accruing technical debt involuntarily.
When we analyze these causes, it seems like technical debt starts to emerge when we are neck-deep into a project.
Although the truth is far from the reality!
The moment you agree on a project with a tight deadline, you subconsciously choose to ignore a few non-essential steps to deliver it on time.
But the real question is – do you ever get time to look back and pay back the debt you had accrued?
There’s always a new project, more essential tasks, and perhaps another deadline to meet. And whether you take it seriously or not, technical debt does return to haunt you!
How consumer demands accrue debt?
What happened during the pandemic is a classic example of technical debt savagery.
A lot of eCommerce companies did not take into account peak traffic while building them. Of course, they had never expected the world to go into a lockdown and rely on online retail for all its needs!
As a result, a lot of major eCommerce brands crashed under pressure. While those companies that built a scalable platform, like Amazon, eBay, cashed in to the opportunity.
Their single decision of not postponing critical development steps saved them from any debt and helped them thrive during difficult times.
But this is easier said than done!
Living up to customer expectations and dealing with technical debt is often more complicated than expected.
This is where OutSystems plays a major role.
With its low-code capabilities, it brings up an alternative to traditional software development practices. Let’s find out how it can help reduce technical debt.
How to handle technical debt with OutSystems?
Model-driven development: OutSystems is a model-based development tool that requires minimal coding.
Thanks to visually-driven design modules and preempted templates, it manages to deliver mission-critical projects on time without any complex code.
As a result, there’s less chance of missing steps, committing errors or bugs in the codes.
Accelerated development time: One of the main reasons why project managers keep a few technical tasks on the backburner is the lack of time.
OutSystems addresses this problem from its root cause. Studies have shown that low-code has the power to reduce development time by 90%.
By leveraging OutSystems, your team can manage to deliver projects on time (sometimes even before it) without compromising on the features and performance.
Automated deployment process: Using a combination of AI and analytics, OutSystems takes care of the entire deployment process so that there are no architectural errors, faulty logic, or broken code.
Consequently, the deployment process doesn’t get completed unless it’s error-free and debt-less.
Connects business and IT teams: We are well aware that bringing technical and business teams on the same page is not easy.
And often, their difference of opinion ends up in lapses in codes and the deployment process.
However, OutSystems turns this entire scenario around. It has proven to be revolutionary in terms of allowing business users entry to development practices.
As they are involved in the development process, there are lesser demands of unexpected changes and more understanding of technological constraints.
Finally, it becomes a win-win situation for both sides. It allows business users to respond to market trends and allows core developers to focus on more critical tasks.
Not to forget, a relaxed, collaborative approach also leaves a little room for any kind of debt to accumulate.