Technical debt is a well-understood and well-ignored reality.
We love to build new stuff, with new technologies. Which we are sure will soon replace the old stuff.
We borrow time by writing quick (and dirty) code, building up debt.
Eventually we have to pay back — with interest. There’s a high interest on quick and dirty code.
Making changes to the code becomes more and more cumbersome. Then business change becomes more painstakingly hard.
That is why continuous renovation is a business concern.
Organisations run into trouble when they continue ignoring technical debt, and keep building new stuff while neglecting the old stuff.
Techies like new stuff, but if they are professional they also warn you for the old stuff still out there. You see them often getting frustrated with overly pragmatic business or project management, pushing away the renovation needs.
Continuous renovation must be part of an IT organisation’s Continous Delivery and application lifecycle management practice.
Making renovation a priority requires courage. Renovation is unsexy. It requires a perspective that extends the short-term horizon.
But the alternative is a monstruous project every so many years to free an organisation from the concrete shoes of unmaintainable applications. At best. If you can afford such a project. Many organization do not survive the neglect of technical debt.