We were already aware that most big companies monitored their employees – checking up on their web-surfing habits and reading the occasional email – but with a newly developed algorithm, Google is attempting to take the idea of personal productivity to the level of personal psychology. In an effort to identify unhappy staff, Google's program sorts through personnel files – appraisals, salary and promotion history – to determine who might be ready to leave. The algorithm operates under the assumption that employees who feel underutilized are the most likely candidates for seeking new jobs, giving management an opportunity to intervene and redefine their roles before this happens. This innovation comes at a time when Google itself has recently reported losing some high profile staff to competitors like AOL and Twitter.  

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