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Compare Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

What is Applicant Tracking Software?

Applicant Tracking Software, also referred to as recruiting software, falls into the category of Human Resources software. ATS is designed to streamline the recruiting process from the sourcing and screening stages all the way through the interview process. ATS solutions generally come as part of a much larger HR software suite or as a point solution designed specifically for recruiting and hiring. There are benefits to each type, and many companies could benefit from integrating their recruitment software directly with their HR software so the hiring, onboarding, and employee management experience is seamless. On the other hand, recruiting software “tacked on” to an HR suite can lack the thorough development and customizability of a point solution.

Applicant Tracking Software Buyer Profile

There are generally two types of ATS buyers: an in house hiring manager or a recruiter working with a recruitment agency. The recruiting features available in an ATS solution are very similar for both types of buyers, and most products are well suited for either. However, ATS solutions designed specifically for recruitment agencies generally offers bolstered time/expense tracking, CRM functionality, and financial billing features so recruitment agencies can track their expenses and bill clients accordingly. Another important distinction is that in-house recruiters will likely be more interested in an ATS solution that integrates with the company’s existing HR software. A recruiting agency’s goal is to source and connect candidates to employers, they really have no need for an integrated HR software suite.

Not sure if your company has reached the right size to need an ATS solution? According to the data collected for the products listed on FindTheBest, the median company size among ATS users(at the main office) was 50.5 employees and 205 employees for the company as a whole.

What to Look for in an ATS solution

Social Media Sourcing
While the number one recruiting channel for most companies is still employee referrals, social media recruitment has become a highly successful sourcing avenue for recruiters. Tapping into your company’s extended social network on Facebook or LinkedIn provides an excellent talent pool to source from. Look for social media integration that allows for granular boolean searches so you can quickly narrow down qualified candidates. Besides searching for eligible candidates, you’ll also want social media integration that allows you to post job openings to social networks and tracks candidates from the source to your online application so you can measure the success of your social media campaign.

Posting to External Job Sites
Apart from the ability to post job listings to social media sites, it’s vitally important to also be able to quickly post to multiple established job search engines (e.g. Monster.com). This will reduce the amount of time spent on administrative double work like manually adding job postings to multiple job postings sites.

EEO Compliance
The ability to keep an extensive record of your recruiting and hiring activity is important in the event you need to audit your hiring history and demonstrate that your company has met Equal Employment Opportunity compliance requirements.

Mobile Capabilities
In today’s increasingly mobile world, recruiters with access to their ATS system via their mobile devices can easily reference candidate profiles and other important recruitment information. On your way to lunch with a promising prospective candidate but you’ve forgotten their resume and you wanted to do some background research in the cab? That’s a problem of the past with a mobile enabled ATS solution. Be sure that your ATS solution at least has the ability to access candidate information on the fly.


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