If the business app you have designed is high on tech debt then it will start to accumulate and will surely affect your company. Therefore, understanding technical debt in an app is crucial when you design it so that you can keep it at the minimum.To start with you must know that:
- Technical debt is something that is bound to happen when you design a specific code for your app
- Tech debt is considered as the silent killer of any business as it will accumulate and strangulate your company slowlybut surely
- Sometimes, you will need to take on tech debt deliberately but you will need to keep a close watch on it so that it is good for your business and
- Ignoring tech debt can be dangerous for your company.
Tech debt is more or less similar to other financial debt and just like you go through different debt settlement reviews to pay these off, you should also repay tech debt on time. This will help you to avoid the accumulation of interest. Otherwise, a time will come when the code of your app will be full of bugs and errors that will reduce its functionality and result in the loss of business income and revenue generation.
Reasons of acquiring tech debt
If you want to know how you can refactor tech debt to make it usable once again you must first know the reasons why tech debt exists. These reasons can be varied but it is crucial for you to identify it at the earliest no matter whatever is the reason. This will help you to implement the best methods to get all the bugs in the app code fixed and enjoy the benefits of a fully functional code base and mobile app. The reasons to acquire tech debt are:
- Choosing a wrong stack just to keep up with the constant pressure from the market as well as from the stakeholders
- Making hasty decisionsthat results in choosing the wrong technology which will prevent you from going back to rectify it in the future and
- Having very little time to meet the deadline and therefore leave a few corners open and unattended during the designing process.
Such issue will manifest themselves in several ways in the future and the most significant one is that it will affect the normal functioning of the app.
Issues with functioning
Acquiring tech debt is all about wrong and faulty codebase. This will affect the functionality of the app and along with it, it will also affect several other areas of the aps such as its:
- Convoluted schema
- Production outage and
- Long enhancement in cycle times to name a few.
Once the tech debt starts, it will not be fixed all by itself and will continue to worsen the situation. What is even more dangerous is the fact that it will go on accruing interest as time passes by. Such interest accrued will affect the app in different other ways as well such as:
- Its productivity
- Its performance
- Its morale
- Its quality
- Its expenses and several other problems.
If you want to overcome all these you and your team will need to manage the code base on a regular basis to ensure that quality of its deliverables stay as high as possible.
Good and bad tech debts
There is no reason to believe that all tech debts are bad and therefore not all of it needs to be remediated. Just as it is said earlier, tech debts are much like financial debts which can be both bad and good depending on how you use your debt and how you manage it according to your available resources.
There may be specific situations wherein a little bit of debt is good for your business provided it stays always within the manageable limits. These manageable tech debts will help you in several ways no matter how surprising it may sound to you in the beginning.
- It will enable a fair competition among all different teams in your organization
- It will facilitate and ensure regular maintenance of the code base and
- It will also help you to maximize your profit from the code base.
However, for all thisit is necessary that you allocate specific time for this process to your teams and dedicate each team with a specific job. For example, one team should identify the bugs in the code base, one team should test the code and another should remediate it to make the code base free from the bugs, fully functional and eliminate the chances of any stagnation in the future.
Knowing the consequences of it
If you do not manage tech debt well then your app will not perform well, but this goes without saying. There are much more to it and that is why you should take tech debt and its accumulation in a mobile app so seriously.
- If you ignore tech debt and do not assignenough spare time for the development teams then things will continue to worsen as there will be no discussions between the teams about the tech debt and its effects or even its importance.
- In addition to that you will not have any or enough control over the code base once it is released and
- These codes will often come back after a short time if not addressed at regular intervals.
This in turn will promote the critical bugs inside the code base and in addition to that it will also make the teams lose their focus on their job. They will always focus on the time deadlines and overlook the needs of the users or the code base while designing the codes. They will avail shortcuts and unfair methods just to meet the given deadlines. This will not only damage your business prospects but will also affect your reputation and impression in the market.
Therefore, just like you treat your financial debt with care and concern, make sure that you take similar steps to manage tech debt and keep it to the minimum level in your app.