If you are using 90% of your engineering capacity fixing bugs, it is tempting to think that you need to throw away your product and build a future-proof platform.

Let’s suppose that you’ve achieved that technological nirvana: you have a system with zero bugs and zero maintenance cost. How long do think it will keep running until you need to change it?

In the ad tech industry, that is three years. Three years until some technology or company comes up and probe your product obsolete. Or at least old.

Maybe Facebook or Google will redesign their ad platform, forcing you to update yours. A break-through in A.I./Machine Learning that is game-changing and pushes you to build another product. A new hybrid between iPad and iPhone? A new type of smartphone? You get the picture.

The cost of designing and building a future-proof system shouldn’t be higher than the cost of developing something fast to keep up with the market. Moving fast doesn’t mean creating technical debt; there are easily avoidable design mistakes you can avoid.

Don’t overspend on building the ultimate platform. Divide your budget between getting to the market at the right time, with good enough quality.


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Leo Celis