Gartner put forward a construction called bimodal IT, basically a recommendation on how to organize IT approaches to business demands. Simply stated, the idea is that IT departments must operate in two modes; Mode 1 is a legacy environment and Mode 2 is cloud. In the cloud mode, IT can deploy a set of philosophies, methodologies, technologies and organization that fits the new business demands for speed and agility. In the legacy world, IT must maintain stability and the old ITIL-driven structures. Gartner\u2019s bimodal concept says an IT group needs to move both quickly and slowly for an effective digital workplace.\u00a0\n\n\nThis is a cop-out. Why would an organization do this? I\u2019m blowing the whistle on this false construct.\u00a0\n\n\nFirst, let\u2019s examine what\u2019s true about the bimodal construct. It is true that in the cloud world it\u2019s much easier to deploy the latest thinking and agile methodologies and operations such as DevOps. Cloud provides a standard, scalable, elastic environment that can be easily assembled and naturally lends itself to a software-defined world. So it\u2019s much easier to run quickly in this environment. But that is no excuse not to apply these same philosophies to the legacy world.\u00a0\n\n\nAn objective in bimodal thinking is to move as much as you can as quickly as you can into the new world. But this may not be a good idea. On its surface, migrating to the cloud has interesting promise \u2013 if you cast aside the business risks and costs to migrate. I also want to point out that this strategy will never deal with the fundamental overbalance in costs in which organizations spend disproportionately on legacy IT per business function than they spend in the cloud world. Even if an organization deploys the average of 20 percent of its costs into private or public cloud environments, 80 percent of its IT cost remains in the legacy environment.\u00a0\n\n\nI recommend that CIOs embrace DevOps \u2013 the jewel in the crown in the cloud world \u2013 and apply its principles of agile, elastic thinking to their legacy world. Although this is difficult, organizations are certainly capable of succeeding in this effort. A case in point is JPMorgan. Taking a DevOps on PaaS strategy, they achieved remarkable outcomes including:\n\n\n700 percent improvement in developer productivity\n59-day reduction in time to market\n40\u00a0percent infrastructure utilization improved to 70%\n45\u00a0percent savings in infrastructure costs\nMoving from a release schedule of twice a year to continuous releases\n\n\nSource: apprenda.com \u00a0\u00a0\u00a0\n\n\nThese are huge step-change improvements in performance in terms of time, cost, quality and maintainability. It turns out you can, in fact, take DevOps principles (albeit with more effort and more investment) and apply them in your legacy world.\u00a0\n\n\nAs we at Everest Group work with businesses applying DevOps principles to their legacy environment, we consistently see a 50 percent improvement in productivity. I\u2019m not arguing that you shouldn\u2019t move work out of your legacy world into cloud. However, not everything will move out of legacy quickly. Clearly, businesses can apply the same set of philosophies, principles and automation techniques of the cloud world (albeit with more investment and more effort) to the larger, legacy world. I believe a business would be equally foolish to not implement these principles in its legacy world as the business would be if it didn\u2019t take advantage of them in the cloud world.\u00a0\n\n\nHence, I say Gartner has it wrong. It is not a bimodal world. It\u2019s first a cloud-leap world and then apply the methodologies and automation strategy to the legacy world. It\u2019s not a question of either\/or, nor is it necessary to be slow while also being fast. It\u2019s a question of applying the same concepts in both cloud and legacy environments.\u00a0\n\n\nCan you achieve the improvements to the same extent in legacy? No. Will you achieve the same kind of elasticity and speed in legacy? No. But you can dramatically improve your IT performance. Certainly you will achieve more speed and lower cost in cloud, but you will get substantial improvements in speed and cost even in legacy.\u00a0\n\n\nThere\u2019s another benefit of taking this approach instead of the cop-out bimodal thinking: you will be able to restructure your IT organization around the business users\u2019 demand for speed.