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An applicant tracking system (ATS) is one of the best tools you can get for recruiting and hiring. Read all about applicant tracking systems in this article.
Whether you’re a small business or a big org, getting the right talent on board is the most important part of hiring. To do it, you need the right tools in your kit — and an applicant tracking system is one of the best tools you can get.
An applicant tracking system can help you optimize your recruitment and hiring, provide a better candidate experience, and ensure legal compliance throughout the recruitment process. This enables you to spend less time on tedious, repetitive tasks and more time on the most important part of recruiting: finding, getting to know, and hiring the best talent.
In this article, we’re delving into applicant tracking systems. We’ll cover:
Let’s jump into it.
An applicant tracking system (ATS) is a software application that recruiters and hiring managers can use to structure and customize their recruitment and hiring process.
An ATS functions as a centralized platform where recruiters and hiring managers can collect and view applicants, track their progress, and filter them based on their qualifications.
Applicant tracking systems are becoming increasingly popular among HR professionals. The main reason for this is that an ATS allows recruiters and hiring managers to optimize nearly every step in the recruitment process. An ATS automates processes that would otherwise be manual, allowing you to do more with a smaller team — something which is particularly valuable for small businesses and startups.
Recruitment steps that an ATS can help you optimize include:
And much, much more. In fact, the features above represent only the most common capabilities of most applicant tracking systems today.
There are many benefits to using an application tracking system in your recruiting process. In this section, we’ll delve into three important things an ATS allows you to do:
An ATS can help recruiters and hiring managers save a lot of time in the recruitment process by automating steps that would otherwise be manual.
We’ve already touched on some of these above, including uploading job postings to job boards. collecting, storing, and accumulating candidate information, and recording screening and interview results.
On top of helping you reduce the time you spend on manual processes, an applicant tracking system can also help you create a more efficient recruitment process.
Some of the features that facilitate this include:
These features can help you create a significantly more efficient recruitment process. This helps improve your chances of succeeding in what really matters: getting the best talent on board.
One of the most important things you can do to make sure that the best talent wants to work with you is to provide a good candidate experience. A good candidate experience not only shows candidates that your organization is professional, but also that you care about your most important asset: your people.
An applicant tracking system can help you provide a better candidate experience via:
Providing a good candidate experience is just as beneficial for your company as it is for candidates. After all, candidates talk. Candidates who might not be familiar with you will hear of the experience other candidates have had with your org. You want that experience to be positive — even if the candidate didn’t get the job.
Note: One way to enhance the candidate experience is to show candidates exactly how they fit into your organization. With The Org, you can automatically import jobs from your ATS to your company’s org chart. Set up your company page and provide a better, more transparent candidate experience with The Org.
An ATS doesn’t just help you recruit more efficiently — it can also help you ensure legal compliance throughout the recruitment process and keep the process equitable for all candidates.
An ATS reports and collects information necessary to maintain compliance with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) regulations and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) regulations.
Using an applicant tracking system can help you avoid bias that can limit diversity in hiring and lead to labor law violations. An ATS can be programmed to screen for relevant job qualifications, skills, and experience. The system doesn’t rely on recruiter opinions, nor does it disclose religion, ethnicity, or disabilities. It provides a data-driven approach and doesn’t take “gut feelings” or “hunches” into account.
An ATS can also be used to hide or eliminate other data in searches to avoid bias in the recruitment process. For example, you can hide gender, surnames, demographic location, and other areas of bias. This allows you to focus on relevant candidate strengths rather than identifying characteristics.
This is particularly valuable for small businesses with limited recruitment and HR staff. It can help small employers stay up to date on employment law and compliance, while also supporting an equitable recruiting process.
When choosing an ATS, the first step is to know your company type and size. Applicant tracking systems vary in scope and complexity depending on what company type and size they cater to.
Company type and size typically include the following three categories:
Once you know your company type and size, there are a few questions you should be ready to answer:
These questions can help you narrow down the scope of your search to solutions that best match your company profile.
Tip: Some HRIS’ may already have an ATS module. If yours does, you need to decide if the module offers enough functionality for your company. A standalone ATS is likely more robust and customizable than an HRIS module, so depending on your needs you may want to consider a standalone solution.
With thousands of different recruitment software platforms available, choosing the right ATS can seem a daunting task.
To help give you an idea of your options, we’ve compiled a list of five applicant tracking systems that are great for SMBs — and easy to scale as your org grows.
Greenhouse is the fastest growing provider of recruitment software. The Greenhouse ATS is a complete recruitment solution suitable for small, medium, and large companies.
This solution is a collaborative ATS designed to be used by everyone in the company. It gives all team members — recruiters, hiring managers, interviewers, and execs — the tools they need to make better hires, faster.
Benefits of Greenhouse include:
Lever is a leading Talent Acquisition Suite that helps talent teams reach their hiring goals and to connect companies with top talent.
Lever provides talent acquisition leaders from all sized companies with a complete applicant tracking system and robust candidate relationship management (LeverCRM) platform in a single solution.
Benefits of Lever include:
Workable is a cloud-based applicant tracking system that allows hiring teams to easily collaborate, find candidates, and track applicants.
The solution is accessible, intuitive, and easy to navigate. It’s particularly well suited for small to medium-sized businesses, enabling them to coordinate, streamline, and ultimately scale their recruitment processes.
Benefits of Workable include:
Zoho Recruit has been awarded the best applicant tracking software by leading review platforms. Zoho Recruit offers complete solutions for both in-house recruiters and staffing agencies to help you source, track, and hire the best candidates.
The full suite ATS solution is easy to use, customizable, and has excellent search capabilities. It also comes with a small price tag, making it a great option for small businesses.
Benefits of Zoho Recruit include:
Breezy HR is an end-to-end recruitment solution to streamline your entire hiring process. Breezy HR automates tasks like pre-screening candidates, sending emails, scheduling interviews, and collecting feedback from your team, allowing you to focus on hiring rather than tedious, repetitive tasks.
The solution is typically used by small and medium-sized businesses and offers several different payment plans — including “Bootstrap,” which is free.
Benefits of Breezy HR include:
The applicant tracking systems above are only a handful of solutions available on the market.
To help you narrow down your search even further, here are a few tips for evaluating and comparing different ATS options to find the right fit for your company.
And finally, make sure the solution you choose has the right integrations. Does the solution integrate with your calendar software, your preferred sourcing channels, and the job boards you use? Does it integrate with your HRIS to make onboarding easier? You want a solution that “plays nice” with your existing systems — so make sure to confirm that it does.
Applicant tracking systems are becoming increasingly popular among HR professionals. An ATS allows recruiters and hiring managers to optimize nearly every step in the recruitment process. It automates processes that would otherwise be manual, allowing you to do more with a smaller team.
There are many benefits to using an ATS in your organization. In this article, we’ve covered three important areas.
When choosing an applicant tracking system, make sure to choose a solution that fits your company type and size. Consider your budget, how many roles you’re looking to fill, and if you’re hiring globally. You should also take the solution’s support model into consideration — especially if you’re new to using an ATS.
Finally, remember to talk to the people who’ll be using the applicant tracking system. You want a solution that works for everyone — and that means you need to know what your recruiters, hiring managers, and team leaders need in an ATS.
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