Applicant Tracking Systems: 4 Reasons to Invest in an ATS

Oct 16, 2017
| Extensis Recruiting Team
Applicant Tracking System why to invest

Recruiting is an ever-changing and evolving industry. Over the last few years, trends such as candidate experience and employer branding have completely changed how companies, big and small, attract and hire talent. But perhaps the biggest change for talent acquisition has been the rise of recruitment technology – most notably the applicant tracking system (ATS).

In case you aren’t familiar with ATSs, here is a definition from iCIMS:

“An applicant tracking system, commonly referred to as an ATS, is a software application that enables the electronic handling of a company's recruitment needs. An applicant tracking software allows an organization to collect and store candidate and job related data and track and monitor the process of candidates through all stages of the hiring process.”

While an ATS isn’t new technology, companies such as iCIMS have revolutionized what specialized recruitment software is capable of accomplishing, how it looks and feels (for both recruiters AND candidates), and how hiring can be made easier and more efficient.

An ATS can provide many benefits to recruiting teams and entire organizations, but four in particular stand out from the rest:

1)  Increase Productivity and Results with Software that Prioritizes Talent Acquisition

Recruiting is time consuming and challenging, especially as job seekers continue to gain more power in the hiring process. With attracting consumer-minded candidates becoming more difficult, it’s extremely important for recruiting teams to maintain productivity. This is where an ATS can prove to be a great investment.

Recruiters who have to manually enter data spend a lot of their workday performing this task. That means less time to recruit candidates for open positions, which leads to a longer time-to-fill and less return on investment for the organization. However, companies with an ATS are 40% more productive than those without one.

This is because one of the primary functions of an ATS is to take many of the administrative tasks away from recruiters, freeing them up to spend their time finding and hiring top talent. Not to mention that an ATS can filter out around 75% of applicants in the first stage of the hiring process. With all this extra time, it allows recruiters and talent acquisition teams to focus on identifying the right talent.

2) Help Save Money

One of the benefits of increased productivity is that it helps save money! With recruiters spending less time on administrative tasks and more time recruiting the right way, positions are filled faster. When the right people are hired into an organization, performance and results improve, establishing a significant impact on the bottom line.

It can cost a company as much as $23,000 per unfilled position, and that number can be even higher depending on the level of a role. An ATS helps recruiters and organizations shorten time-to-fill and decrease the likelihood of unfilled positions.

An ATS also helps reduce the chances of making a bad hire, which can be even more costly than an unfilled position. A focus on recruitment fosters a healthy candidate pipeline of qualified talent. Think about what a company (and more specifically a recruiting team) can do with all the savings from investing in an ATS.

3) Keep Your Company Compliant

We have written before about how complex and important HR compliance is for today’s businesses. Employment law requires human resources and recruiting teams to be more careful than ever when hiring new talent.

Recruiting processes and data that are manually inputted into software by recruiters and sourcers requires tedious work, and even the smallest of errors can lead to serious compliance issues. This is especially true for EEO and OFCCP data. An ATS is designed to collect and manage sensitive information in a way that makes it easier and less stressful to stay compliant.

The modern ATS has built-in automation features that are designed with compliance in mind. As a matter of fact, most support automation efforts that include sorting, storing, and sharing of information. Investing in an ATS is a great way to assist with your team’s employment law and compliance efforts.

4) Improve Your Candidate Experience to Win Over Today’s Consumer-Minded Job Seekers

Today’s job seekers have much higher expectations when it comes to the hiring process. Because of this, candidates have gained the upper hand when looking for new positions. If your application process doesn’t meet their high standards, you can bet you’re missing out on top talent.

One thing that is guaranteed to hurt the candidate experience is not offering a mobile-optimized application process. Candidates want and expect to be able to apply to positions from their phones and tablets. Using outdated software that prevents this will ultimately hurt your candidate experience and employer brand. Luckily, the modern recruitment software found within an ATS is focused on offering mobile-friendly and convenient application processes, enabling organizations to offer candidates a stellar apply flow on both desktop and mobile devices.

The reason candidate experience matters is that it reflects both your employer AND company brand. The rise of social sharing has made it easier than ever for candidates to share their experiences (both good and bad) on the internet. 59% of candidates say they would likely tell others not to apply to a company after having a poor candidate experience. Having the tools and software in place to offer a best-in-class candidate experience is critical to business success.

An Applicant Tracking System Can Be the Missing Piece to Your Recruiting Puzzle

Companies of all sizes face recruiting challenges as 2018 approaches. Ensuring that recruiting processes are set up for success is critical if companies are to meet their talent acquisition goals. Providing a great candidate experience, being more productive, saving money, and staying compliant go a long way to ensuring a successful recruiting year. An applicant tracking system can help you accomplish all of this and more!

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