Power of Veto

Over the last couple of years I’ve noticed an interesting trend when it comes to decision making process about acquiring a software – specifically a middleware software since that is what GridGain is developing – the power of veto held by architects and senior developers.

Let me explain.

The final purchasing decision (or an approval) lies as always with those having a purse power, i.e. folks with budgeting control. Small, medium, large companies – and I’ve met many in every category – work pretty much the same way.

What is actually new and a growing phenomena is that senior engineering staff have increasingly powerful “veto” power, essentially an ability to reject a technology or a product they don’t deem acceptable. That is easier to imagine in a smaller company – in startups it’s been almost a norm – but this is becoming a standard practice in bigger, more cumbersome structured companies as well.

It is an interesting situation. First of all, I’m talking specifically about software developers and not just IT in general. IT (support, operations, etc.) always had much greater leeway in purchasing decisions. Second of all, software development people still can’t outright dictate the technology or product choice. They almost always recommend, and evaluate it – but now they increasingly have ability to reject it, or veto it as well – if it was hoisted on them from the top.

It’s, of course, not that simple and in large organizations there are many different factors in play. But there is a growing trend towards greater development team participation and influence in selection of technology and products.

What does it mean for us, the software developers?

It means that we can and should be more vocal. Developers are the people that “touch” the software technology and products more than anyone else in the organization – and their preferences should be heard and accounted for.

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