This is an interesting piece on data predictions. There’s a college that’s using data to help students, but not in the way you might think. Rather than customizing learning plans or finding more efficient ways to teach, the college is analyzing data to find students that might be struggling with college life overall and intervening early to help them cope with college and continue to move forward in their studies before they drop out.
This is similar to something HP has done, trying to predict if employees might leave and intervene to see if something can be done. I heard an interview with the HP managers, who praised the program, and found they were among the most likely candidates to leave the company. However HP also realized that identifying people likely to leave allowed their HR people to try and find creative ways to retain their employees.
I’m not entirely sure this is a process I’d like to be a part of, but it does seem like HP is doing well in their experiment. They realize they can’t solve every issue and keep every employee, but they can work proactively to try and reduce the losses. However privacy is a big part of this data analysis and I hope HP keeps that in mind as they move forward.