It’s true! The working practice that’s been heavily copied across the digital industry for nearly 10 years is now officially dead. Deeply embedded in Google’s 8 pillars of innovation is slowly being eradicated from it’s version of history.
Some of Google’s best products came from 20% time, including GMail and one of their core revenue generators, Adsense. No one from Google is really saying too much on the subject, some say they are too busy to be able to afford the time. I’d say they cannot afford to stop innovating.
Connected used to have 20% time, we started in 2009 and it came with very mixed results. Most projects never got of the ground, even fewer made it into production so we quietly phased it out at the end of 2012. Officially. However, our dramatic efficiency drive has freed up maybe 40% of the week to work on “non-production” items so we’re actually innovating faster than when we had 20%. Significantly, many more projects make it into production and they tend, now, to be closer to the heart of our strategy. 20% time has just grown up.