Today's NYT business section has a lengthy article about how some firms are using big data to predict performance of job applicants. Much of the piece centers on Gild, a new startup that has developed algorithms to review programmer code and expertise from a wide range of open source websites. Gild identified a programmer with no college as the best available person in the LA area, interviewed him and hired him a $115k/year job. So far he seems to be performing well on the technical aspects of his position.
Two obvious caveats mentioned in the article: (1) this might work great for jobs where the skills necessary to be productive can be easily identified, but not so well for highly complex jobs and (2) the algorithm focuses on computer programming, not interpersonal skills.
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