From my experience, most organizations experience a wide gap between development’s technical decisions and the overarching business drivers that concern executive management. If both the business leaders and the development organization agree to use pink slime, there’s no problem: It’s a business decision. However, if management believes that the organization is providing 100% grass-fed, free-range, all-natural Angus ground beef with no filler—but development is in fact distributing beef laced with an ammonia-treated mash of meat trimmings—you’re undeniably opening the door to problems somewhere down the road.

Now that software has morphed from a business process enabler into a competitive differentiator, business expectations about the speed and reliability of software releases have changed dramatically. With a perfect storm of all-time-low switching costs, downward price pressure, and relentless media coverage of application failures, software quality matters more than ever. Ignoring this sea change regarding tolerance for faulty software is now a tremendous business risk: a risk equivalent to McDonald’s resuming the use of pink slime now that the public is all too aware of what that entails.

Wayne Ariola is Chief Strategy Officer of Parasoft, where he leads the development and execution of the company’s long-term strategy.