Bimodal IT: Is it the Right or Wrong Approach?

July 15, 2016 3 min Read

Bimodal IT is a relatively new buzzword/term that was coined by Gartner, the technology research advisory company. But what does it actually mean and is it the correct approach to tackling your organization’s internal information technology needs.

According to Gartner, “bimodal IT is the practice of managing two separate, coherent modes of IT delivery, one focuses on stability and the other on agility. Mode 1 is traditional and sequential, emphasizing safety and accuracy. Mode 2 is exploratory and nonlinear, emphasizing agility and speed. Bimodal IT is the only sustainable solution for businesses in an increasingly disruptive digital world.”

But is it the only solution or even the best approach to take with your company’s IT functions? It seems to be a divisive topic among many experts in the field who wonder if it actually inhibits a company’s ability to progress with technology. (Search “bimodal IT” on the web and you will get a plethora of articles questioning Gartner’s assumptions.)

One big argument against bimodal IT is that it establishes siloes and can create a divide among a company’s new applications and legacy IT functions. Gartner is basically saying that because transforming traditional IT is challenging that it is better to simply maintain those functions and technology “as is.” Anything new should be created as Mode 2. Detractors feel like this is the wrong approach and that organizations are better off tackling the tough task of having slow-moving, legacy IT functions move to newer applications and technology.

Companies have had success using bimodal IT as its framework, and Gartner notes specific examples. But other companies, generally larger enterprises, have also had success with a complete digital transformation and not making a definitive separation.

So what’s best? It is subjective and depends on your company’s ability to adjust and how fast your company can handle the transformation to digital. Research and advice-gathering from the experts at cloud computing providers is a great place to start. Expedient uses a combination of infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and managed services including cloud computing, compliance/security and disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) to transform enterprise information technology capabilities and providing expert advice about bimodal strategy.

Steve Gruetter Steve Gruetter

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