Silicon UK Podcast: How Much Technical Debt Does Your Business Have?

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Paulo Rosado, CEO and Founder of OutSystems.

OutSystems reports that 69% of IT leaders identify technical debt as a major threat to their companies’ ability to innovate. With COVID-19 exposing vulnerabilities in organisations around the world, this latest industry survey from OutSystems examines the cost of technical debt facing businesses across industries and geographies.

As businesses strive to rebuild following the challenges of the past year, technical debt has emerged as a major roadblock to innovation and recovery, especially for enterprises focused on growth. Technical debt is a technical design or development choice made for short-term benefit with long-term consequences.

Across industries, this results from the development of solutions implemented quickly to maximise speed, rather than optimising for the future. Based on a global survey of 500 IT leaders, the OutSystems report highlights the challenges companies face as they confront the many causes of technical debt, including pressure to meet deadlines, constant change in the marketplace, and outdated technology.

Some key findings of The Growing Threat of Technical Debt report include:

  • There is a massive opportunity cost for businesses of all sizes across all industries as they dedicate time, money, and other resources into technical debt instead of innovation. On average, businesses spend approximately one-third of their IT budget addressing technical debt – this jumps to 41% for enterprises.
  • A majority (69%) of IT leaders say technical debt poses a fundamental limit on their ability to innovate, along with 61% saying it drags on their company’s performance and 64% agreeing it will continue to have a major impact in the future.
  • There isn’t a sole cause of technical debt, though IT leaders cite too many development languages/frameworks (52%), turnover within the development team (49%), and accepting known defects to meet release deadlines (43%).
  • Businesses continue to delay addressing technical debt, further exacerbating the issue. Only 20% say tech debt is something they’re currently managing well, though 36% report they’ll be able to manage tech debt in the future.
  • Technical debt compounds as companies grow. Enterprises spend 41% of their IT budget on technical debt, while small businesses spend 27%.

 

Paulo Rosado founded OutSystems in 2001 with a vision to help customers innovate faster and fundamentally change how enterprise software is developed. Staying true to that vision, Paulo has led OutSystems to become a global leader and pioneer in the application development platform market and one of the fastest-growing B2B tech companies in the world.

OutSystems was founded in 2001 with the mission to give every organization the power to innovate through software. The OutSystems modern application platform’s high productivity, connected, and AI-assisted tools help developers rapidly build and deploy a full range of applications anywhere the organization requires.

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