As a CTO/lead engineer how can I deal with external assessment of the shitty software I developed and evolved?

A new manager asked for an external assessment of our software for scalability and sustainability for next investment round..

I’m the technical co-founder (very few equities though), we are only 3 developers and I’m still very involved in programming. I’m probably more like the lead engineer than a CTO.

We are in the 5th year, our turnover almost $1M, We are not in huge debt, but our money is running out so we want to ask for a funding.

I think the assessment company is going to propose a complete rewrite of the platform, developed by them.

I’m very nervous about that. They will propose a completely different technological stack. I’ll have no expertise in it.

The actual software is very old (+8 years), evolved as a “consultingware” mess and even if working and horizontally scalable, must be renewed.

So, from one side I would like to befriend them (we need fresh resources and expertise) on the other side I’m afraid I’ll be useless after the migration.

I don’t know how to behave during the process.


  • Outside assessments are often used to justify actions the executive has already decided to take.

    If it’s already known the product is an organically grown mess, what is the consultant going to tell the executives that they don’t already know?

    I agree it’s possible the other founders are trying to push you out. They might be blaming you for whatever technical debt has accumulated. In this case the real purpose of the assessment is for you to explain to the new technical team how everything works before you and your developers get fired.

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