How to Find Great Candidates Faster with an ATS & CRM

Most recruiters have gone through the stress of not being able to source candidates in time for a job opening.

Whenever companies cannot hire in time, it impacts their growth directly. Without people to fill in the vacant positions, they either will have to postpone their plans, or hand more work over to existing employees, who are already busy with their daily tasks.

Either way, slow hires lead to a huge strain on the company, which could lead to several months’ worth of lost growth opportunities. 

For instance, the median time to hire for a new position is 33 to 49 days, depending on the industry, according to research by LinkedIn. And when you are talking about taking one month to hire a single person, there is obvious room for improvement.

It does not help that 75% of companies globally have experienced talent shortages or hiring difficulties (as reported in a 2022 ManpowerGroup survey) either.

However, precisely because this is a huge challenge in the industry, recruitment agencies have made quick hiring times a competitive advantage, by making the most out of tools to help them find high-quality candidates much faster.

In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about using tools like applicant tracking systems (ATS) and customer relationship management (CRM) to speed up your recruitment, while improving the quality of the candidates you source for your clients.

And before we get into the benefits of modern recruiting tools, it is best to understand why the hiring process can take so long, from a recruiter’s perspective.

Top 3 reasons why recruiters can’t help their clients hire quickly enough:

Generally, recruiters can’t help their clients quickly enough because:

1. They can’t source the right candidate in time for the hiring period.

If recruiters can’t source the right candidates, their clients will most likely go to someone else, no matter how fast you can source people.

Shortening your hire time does not start with learning how to flood your clients with hundreds of job applications to impress them. It is the other way around! 

First, find a way to source incredibly talented candidates (we will show you how below), then do more of what works, to maximize your chances of finding your clients the right people.

2. They are dealing with too many clients at the same time.

Recruitment is stressful. And if you are working with several, or even hundreds of clients at a time, then the stress is tenfold.

Aside from screening endless applications, recruiters also have to balance account management to build and maintain rapport with clients.

Without leveraging tools like a CRM system to help manage clients, it will be hard to focus on what matters most: getting quality candidates by each job listing deadline.

3. They don’t have a streamlined process to handle several job listings at once.

Recruiters regularly have to post job listings on several platforms. If you think about it in terms of just one job, it could just mean five different listings, for example. That does not sound too bad.

But say you are working with 10 different clients at once, who want you to help fill five positions each: That is 50 positions for you to monitor.

And if you are posting each job opening across five different platforms, that is 250 posts you need to keep track of every day, not counting the screening and vetting process for each applicant.

Without tools like an ATS (covered below) to manage all these listings, things can get out of hand quite quickly. 

What are ATS and CRM tools, and how can they help you find candidates faster and more efficiently?

Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

An applicant tracking system, or ATS, is a system that helps you manage applicants and candidates from your job listings or talent pool.

Because ATS’ were made to optimize the recruitment process, they generally help improve these metrics:

  • Time to Hire - used to measure how long it takes a recruiter to find a candidate that results in a client’s hiring decision
  • Quality of Hire - a qualitative metric used to determine whether the hired candidate is the right fit for the company, where the duration of measurement varies among companies.
  • Cost per Hire - calculated by dividing the sum of all expenses related to hiring by the number of candidates who were actually hired

Being able to improve these metrics results in finding higher-quality candidates at a faster rate.

However, talking about metrics alone can make it hard to visualize how impactful a good ATS can really be for the recruitment process.

Here are a few examples:

Think of your average work day looking at this one-page drag-and-drop interface, instead of 30 browser tabs and stacks of paperwork on your desk: 


One other huge advantage of using an ATS to speed up hiring is the system automatically saves each stage each applicant or candidate is in, in terms of the hiring process. This eliminates the need to go back and forth among applications when you need to submit your shortlist to a client.

In addition to AI-recommended candidates to make the screening process easier, good ATS also includes candidate profiles, where the system automatically compiles publicly-available information onto one page per candidate. Especially for clients who place a strong emphasis on cultural fit, this feature helps you come up with a shortlist of candidates who are most likely to be the right fit for the company.

Here is an example of a complete candidate profile:


And one must not forget the ability to post across thousands of job listing platforms at once, as well as capabilities in sending mass emails. Good ATS’ eliminates redundant tasks by getting more done with less.

With an ATS, you should be able to handpick your preferred job listing platforms, and view progress for each listing across all platforms, all in one place:


It should be the same with sending emails, since U.S. Labor Statistics data reports that there are an average of two available jobs per person looking for one. That means any emails or contact to candidates has to be done as soon as possible.

If you have several candidates whom you are looking to reach out to for the first time, it would be more effective to send introductory emails all out at once.

ATS’ mass-emailing capabilities should allow you to shave hours off your day, by compiling emails from multiple platforms into one, as well as integrating them into your calendar, like this: 


So, in a nutshell, ATS saves you time leading up to the perfect hire, by allowing you to post thousands of job listings in a few clicks, organizing your candidates, improving your screening process, and providing you with everything you need to know to make your best candidate shortlist.

Now that we have covered the benefits of ATS, let’s move on to the world of Customer Relationship Management, to find out how you can save more time in the recruitment process, from the client management side.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

A recruiter’s bread and butter depends on client relationships, and by ensuring all clients’ hiring needs are met. 

The more clients, the more revenue for your company. So in addition to tending to existing clients’ needs, recruitment teams also constantly need to find new prospects who will turn into clients in the future.

This is why recruitment agencies or HR teams often eventually reach a point where the traditional approach to client management (spreadsheets, back-and-forth emails) isn’t going to cut it anymore.

Queue CRM to make things leaner and more effective.  A good CRM needs to help you manage hundreds of clients and monitor prospects simultaneously, so you won’t get your priorities mixed up.

This means that a CRM’s success lies in maintaining and creating new recruitment firm-client relationships. Thus, key metrics related to CRM are:

  • Client Retention Rate - a general measure of how well a recruitment agency is able to retain their clients per month. This is normally expressed as a percentage, such as retaining 90% of clients, meaning the firm lost 10% of its clients.
  • Monthly Revenue - how much money a firm makes per month before deductions.

A good CRM needs to improve both metrics for it to be deemed truly effective, as both these metrics intertwine. According to this Forbes article, increasing your customer retention rate by just 5% can result in more than a 25% increase in profit for your company.

And here is how CRM systems should help you achieve that:

For example, notice here how a CRM helps you separate leads, prospects, engaged prospects, and those who are in the negotiation stage before signing a contract with you:


This makes it much easier to manage your energy during client communication. Plus, it simplifies progress updates to higher-ups, where you can internally report how many leads are in the pipeline, or how many new clients have signed in the past week, for instance.

Another time-saving feature of being subscribed to a CRM is being able to export hiring data to show to clients. 

This means supplying clients with a comprehensive shortlist of candidates, including their key skills, last job, last salary, and more. You can also customize what you want your clients to see in reports.

But for you, one of the most beneficial features of a modern CRM has to be the ability to track revenue from all of this.

CRM allows you to know how much money is coming in from each client, how much each recruiter is making, and more.

Here is what revenue tracking looks like on Manatal:


Gaining clarity on finances helps measure ROI, and helps you develop KPIs and targets that matter for the growth of the business. Finally, you will be able to look beyond metrics like cost per hire, or general figures like client retention rate to validate what you are doing.

You can use revenue data from clients and your team members to develop a 3-month, 6-month, or 12-month vivid vision on revenue targets, for instance, which is something that historically has been hard to measure.

How ATS and CRM work together to reduce time-to-hire and save recruiters several hours a week

Put simply, an ATS is for finding and managing candidates. A CRM system is for managing your clients, who hire you to find candidates.

An ATS helps you create and maintain a talent pool that is always at your fingertips. That way, even in the tightest of timelines, you will always have at least a good few candidates on hand to recommend, instead of frantically searching for applicants from scratch.

A CRM system will assist you in handling hundreds of existing clients, while managing prospects who potentially could become your clients in the future.

These core features help you increase your firm’s revenue, by managing clients while simultaneously finding them the top talent in their respective industries.

So which ATS and CRM are best for my needs?

Many recruiters have thus far been treating ATS and CRM as two separate software. But the idea of jumping between platforms defeats the purpose of time-saving and convenience.

That’s why it pays off to find a service that can do both within one platform. And the good news for recruiters is that there are modern SaaS’ that offer complete ATS and CRM services within a single software.

SaaS like Manatal has both an integrated ATS and CRM in the same platform, meaning you and your team will be able to enjoy both features without needing to be onboarded twice.

On the ATS side, Manatal helps shorten your time-to-hire, by providing you with:

  • Automated job postings, to help you post across thousands of channels from one platform instead of manually having to create a new posting per site
  • A drag-and-drop interface for organizing all your candidates per listing, so you will never have to deal with the stressful and time-consuming process of managing multiple applicants’ statuses during the interview process
  • Complete candidate profiles with publicly-accessible information integrated into one page, which is especially essential for companies that strongly believe in hiring for cultural fit
  • AI-driven candidate recommendation and search, so that you never miss an opportunity to find the best people for the job
  • And much more

And here are Manatal’s key features on the CRM side to help you save time managing clients:

  • Drag-and-drop client management dashboard, which helps you prioritize your time between your existing clients and finding new prospects
  • Integrated email features, so you won’t have to switch tabs and waste unnecessary time navigating multiple pages
  • A customizable external view feature to show your clients everything they need to know, such as candidate salaries, past jobs, social media, etc., while allowing you to select parts you do not want to share with clients
  • Revenue tracking from every client, to maximize your time spent to generate revenue for the company

Manatal’s end-to-end recruitment platform is currently used by thousands of companies across 135 countries. And the best part is the software and its AI improves constantly, to keep all its users on the cutting edge of recruitment.

What can you take away from all this?

So let’s explore your key takeaways from this article, to help you make your best decision to reduce time-to-hire and improve efficiency in your recruitment process:

1. If you work in recruitment, making ATS and CRM services part of your recruitment strategy is a requirement.

Modern recruitment firms need to make the most out of available tools and resources to perform at their best. SaaS like ATS & CRM were made to streamline the recruitment process, so that you can handle thousands of applicants and hundreds of clients in the least amount of time possible.

Any recruiter who is not using these tools to maximize their efforts will risk lagging behind those who do.

2. Consider subscribing to a service that includes both ATS and CRM (and even more features) in one.

The point of introducing an all-in-one SaaS platform into a company is to make work faster, easier, and more effective. If you give employees two or three separate software to use at the same time, you risk overwhelming them.

This is why finding a comprehensive software that can take care of the most time-consuming tasks for you, like applicant tracking and applicant/client management, is crucial.

Manatal offers a 14-day free trial, to help recruiters learn more about the service and how it can be the right fit for them. If you are interested, sign up for the free trial here!

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