More companies are using predictive analytics to hire, promote and retain employees, according to The Wall Street Journal. Specifically, they’re turning to data mining solutions to sift through behavior and performance information of current employees and facts from applications, resumes and interviews of prospective hires. Elissa O’Brien, Vice President of Membership at the Society for Human Resource Management, told the WSJ that the use of predictive analytics has increased over the past five years, thanks to improvements in the technology, making it easier to access, simpler to use and more sweeping in its analysis. According to a soon to be published study by Deloitte Consulting, about 5 percent of companies with 25,000 or more employees are using predictive analytics in Human Resources. Meantime, the Journal reports that Google has created algorithms to predict if applicants would succeed on their job. ConAgra Foods is also using predictive analytics to stay a step ahead of a graying workforce. Some 50 percent of its employees will be eligible to retire over the next 10 years. Mark Berry, Vice President of People Analytics for the company, said, “One of the general assumptions is that the younger you are, the more learning agile you are, but we’ve been able to disprove that.” ConAgra found that learning was mostly an interpersonal skill present at any age. ConAgra also uses analytics to predict which key employees are more likely to quit and the reasons behind their decision to leave. “Pay wasn’t in the top 10,” Berry told the paper. An employee’s relationship with a supervisor and recognition at work were bigger predictors.