This report was written by Herb Krasner, a member of CISQ’s Advisory Board. Herb spent many years at the University of Texas at Austin as Professor of Software Engineering, the Director of Outreach Services for the UT Center for Advanced Research in Software Engineering (ARiSE), and founder and CTO of the UT Software Quality Institute (SQI).
The report aggregates publicly available source material to arrive at a rough estimate of the cost of poor software quality in the United States today. This report fills a gap in our understanding of the financial implications of poor-quality software effecting society today and into the future.
In summary, the cost of poor quality software in the US in 2018 is approximately $2.8 trillion, the main components of which are outlined in the body of the report. If we remove the future principal cost of technical debt, the total then becomes $2.26 trillion.
It was our intention to use this report as a starting point for a community discussion. Recommendations for improving the situation are also described.