The term “Technical Debt”, first defined by Ward Cunningham, is a business concept heavily promoted by industry as an effective method of valuing negative equity in software.
Technical Debt is calculated as the cost of fixing the structural quality problems in an application that, if left unfixed, put the business at serious risk. Like financial debt, Technical Debt incurs interest in the form of the extra effort it takes to maintain and enhance an application due to the structural quality flaws in the code.
Technical Debt can be the result of intentional compromises made by the technical teams to deliver applications faster to business, or due to the inability of the developers to develop high quality applications. Whatever may be the reason for the technical debt, the key is to measure and manage it proactively before it gets out of control.
CAST Application Intelligence Platform (AIP) provides an objective and fact based approach for measuring technical debt on a regular basis. Using advanced diagnostics from CAST, an application development team can identify the most serious structural flaws adding to the Technical Debt of the application. CAST AIP not only quantifies Technical Debt, but also gives the development team all necessary tools to proactively manage and reduce it.
Once Technical Debt is in control, CAST AIP provides tangible savings across the IT supply chain. Applying lean principles to development can lead to at least a 10% overall cost and risk reduction. By setting the appropriate threshold for Technical Debt and monitoring critical applications against this threshold, IT and business leaders may make informed decisions about critical trade-offs between delivery agility and business risk. This process ensures that management will maintain the right balance as IT and business conditions evolve.
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