Google has hired and trained the world’s best search engineers. And so it is no surprise that some continue to trickle to fast-growing startups like Pinterest and Airbnb as well as Twitter, Facebook and even Wal-Mart Stores.
This has accelerated in recent years as the company’s own search efforts have gone through some turmoil, with new groups forming to tackle different strands of search including app search, “conversational” search as well as broader artificial intelligence.
Google has worked hard to retain much of its core search engineering talent with salary bumps, counter offers and allowing many to transition to other parts of Google, like Google X and Google Brain, an artificial intelligence group within the company. But the departures show the increasing importance of data analysis and search in everything from social media to e-commerce. (Scroll down to see the diaspora list.)