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Why You Should Take Technology Risks in Product Development

Innovation / Experiment
Scaling Team
Dev Processes

25 April, 2022

Matias Pizarro
Matias Pizarro

CTO and VP of Residents at ComunidadFeliz

Matias Pizarro, CTO and VP of Residents at ComunidadFeliz, recalls a time in his early career when he took a technology risk that had wide-ranging benefits to his product's user experience.

Getting Over the Fear of Change

Four or five years ago, our app user base started to rapidly grow. ComunidadFeliz is a software for building management. One of its features is gathering building-related payments, which administrators can export into PDFs each month. In the beginning, we generated these PDFs using AWS workers, but as we grew, we had hundreds of residences in our system. Suddenly, our admins had a wait time of one or two hours.

We had to think of alternative methods to fix this problem, yet we were scared to change our ways. We scaled horizontally by adding new machines but soon discovered that this wasn't sustainable. We knew that we had to innovate the way we worked.

Adapting to Change

At the time, serverless computing was newly trending. There was palpable skepticism around this new technology, both inside and outside of our organization. Additionally, no one in our team had any experience with it. However, we knew that more horizontal scaling wasn't an option, the costs were rapidly increasing, and our stakeholders were worried.

After analyzing our options, we decided to try serverless computing in order to solve our scaling and financial problems. Of course, it was a big bet on something we had zero knowledge of, but our engineers were thrilled to try new technology and got involved from day one. An essential part of all this new adoption was communication. The whole team needed to clearly understand what problems we were facing, why we were committing to this change, and how this could be the solution.

Introducing new technologies in product development always comes with risks, but the absence of innovation poses a bigger threat.

Since switching to serverless, our app can generate thousands of PDFs at a time. At first, our users thought we had undergone a massive infrastructure change when in fact, all we did was change our computing system. In terms of coding, it wasn't that hard. Yet it had a very high impact on the user; our customer satisfaction went through the roof.

Keep Up With Evolving Technology Trends

  • Don't just reiterate the skills and knowledge you gained in college. Follow industry trends and be curious about new technologies.
  • Try new things even if they're not widely implemented yet. A lack of wide application doesn't mean that something isn't great. It may be the perfect solution for your product. You have to learn what's out there and take risks.

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