Applicant Tracking System

8 ways an ATS will improve results for small recruitment teams

Getting “more bang for the buck” is what all businesses aspire to achieve every year.

Pressure to maximize resources will ratchet up even more in 2022, given the uncertain times ahead, impacting every aspect of business, including recruitment. 

Recruiting departments, operating with leaner teams and reduced budgets, are forced to find creative new ways to improve their outcomes with less firepower. 

ATS tech spend is on a tear 

Many companies have turned to technology to enhance operations and processes. Corporate spending on HR technology was up by 57 percent in 2021 compared to 2020 according to the 2021-2022 HR Systems Survey by the US-based Sapient Insights Research Group. 

In addition, an average of 16 HR systems were utilized by most organizations in 2021, up from 10 in 2020 and nine in 2019. The data was collected across 2,100 various-sized organizations and from multiple industries in 52 countries.

With hiring identified as one of the top-10 HR challenges today by a recent PwC survey, investment in recruitment management systems such as Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) – software for hiring teams to track and manage candidates throughout the recruiting process including the ability to filter, manage, and analyze candidates - is on a tear. 

The global ATS market is expected to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 6.7%, to reach USD 3.2 billion by 2026 from USD 2.3 billion in 2021. Growth is driven by the diverse benefits offered by ATS solutions such as delivering an improved, streamlined candidate experience, automation in the recruitment process, and enhanced analytics and data-led reports and insights.

Growth is also driven by demand from small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs). While ATS solutions were once perceived to be for large corporations only, the ATS market has evolved to be accessible for businesses of all sizes. 

8 reasons to adopt an ATS 

The rise of cloud-based solutions, for example, has made ATS platforms -which manage resume data and recruitment database among other - more affordable and available to SMEs and small recruitment teams. 

ATS solutions enable recruitment teams to use their resources in more productive and impactful ways – in short, reducing time spent on repetitive, time-consuming tasks and spending more effort on analyzing candidates, their skills, how they can add value, and building relationships with applicants who could be terrific hires in the future. 

If you run a small recruiting team and are currently considering, or weighing up the pros and cons of adopting recruitment management systems such as an ATS solution, here are eight great reasons (and day-to-day benefits) to make the move as soon as possible. 

1. Find “good fit” candidates faster

Robust talent spotting and recruitment processes are integral building blocks for companies who want to remain relevant in fast-changing markets and industries. 

While talent identification and hiring are critical roles, they are also challenging ones, especially if HR team members still manually sift through hundreds of resumes. 

“Old-school” recruiting is time-consuming and error-prone. It also hinders collaboration and fast decision-making - quite simply, it’s not “fit for purpose” in today’s digital world. 

Stepping up to these recruitment challenges, and more, ATS solutions simplify hiring tasks to help organizations (of all sizes) to find the right talent faster with innovative features. 

For example, Manatal ATS, through the scanning of resumes – using keyword searches, tags, and filters - can sort applications easily and efficiently to quickly rule out candidates who don’t meet the qualifications for the job. Potential candidates can also be ranked based on their skills, education, and experience and how they match the specific requirements of the job. 

2. On the same page

Spreadsheets here, memos there, unread resumes piling up in a corner, phone calls, and emails from applicants unanswered – recruiting can become disorganized, inefficient, siloed, and messy fast without robust internal policies and best practices. 

Good organization enables good recruitment outcomes such as fewer missed calls and missed opportunities to hire the best talent - especially when hiring for more than one position at once. 

While recruiters in the past struggled to store candidate data in a single online (accessible to the team) space, ATS features streamline the hiring process to enable all candidates to be grouped and viewed in a central place.

With the recruitment team using a common platform, everyone will be on the same page regarding applicants, timelines, and pipelines. 

Applicants can be easily grouped into pipelines according to education, qualifications, skill sets, experience, and more filters or categories.  Other recruitment team colleagues can also track hiring stages and view update reports in one place – so no more opening different tabs or systems to get the full picture of ongoing recruitment projects. 

A central big picture view also enables recruiters to see where their processes are working well, and potential roadblocks. Bottlenecks in hiring processes result in lost time and productivity and often slow down the search for the top talent - unqualified candidates applying for positions is one common cause of bottlenecks so there may be a need for clearer details in posting adverts.

3. Data-driven recruitment

Just as industrial companies use sensors and analytics software to find areas to improve their production processes and decision making; recruitment and HR departments can also engage analytics software to enhance their operations. 

Sophisticated and easy-to-use ATS platforms like Manatal provide analytics features that allow recruiters to create reports to monitor key recruitment metrics and highlight diverse insights. These reports can spotlight where resources are being wasted, and where they could be better used.

Accurate, constant, in-depth monitoring can also track which hiring managers or teams need more support or training. Reporting tools can also identify new opportunities for collaboration, feedback, and resource allocation. 

Recruitment analytics can also help teams to find the job boards that are working best for them. ATS solutions can identify where candidates are finding open positions – if they are coming from social media like Twitter or Facebook, for example, hiring teams can change strategies to spend more time and resources on these channels, and less on others.

4. One-click job postings to maximize efficiency and reach

More “bang for the buck” – that’s what ATSs can deliver in terms of job postings.

They optimize outreach by posting adverts to as many job boards as you like from tens to hundreds to thousands in a single click. No more posting to sites manually one at a time. 

In addition, recruiters won't need to manually input candidate data into spreadsheets ever again - with an ATS, candidate data is automatically imported to the software and presented in a standardized format to make it easier to analyze all the candidates.

Besides attracting more eyeballs to job postings, ATS features also help to manage candidate information seamlessly and easily. Hiring funnels, for example, allow managers to view recruiting pipelines and hiring progress at a glance. Workflows can also be centralized and simplified including the set-up of automated messages to quickly communicate with candidates as soon as their resumes have been received.

5. Hire faster

Speed is a key factor in winning the race for talent today. 

With one-day hiring becoming increasingly common in some industries, recruitment teams need to review their processes regularly to see where steps can be sped up or even removed.  

Speed is an important factor because job hunters expect a fast turnaround from start to finish, especially candidates with in-demand skills – where a month was once considered rapid from application to starting work, many expect this to be confirmed in weeks or days now.

Hiring teams are equally keen to move things along because vacant positions cost money and delay operations.  While there will situations where there is a shortage of qualified candidates, some common reasons for sluggish processes include:

  • Unnecessary and time-consuming hiring steps
  • Looking in the wrong places to find the right candidates
  • No, or slow communication with candidates

ATS systems can cut through barriers in a two-step process. One, by identifying the bottlenecks based on insights generated by recruiting metrics, and two, the adoption of ATS features to automate problem areas such as admin, from requisition to sending the offer letter.  ATS features can also streamline manual tasks such as resume sorting, and communicating with applicants.

6. Positive candidate experiences

In-demand candidates are judging potential employers, as much as employers are reviewing potential new hires today.

So, if you want job seekers to continue to be attracted to your company and career opportunities, you need to make a good first impression. 

And it begins with your job application platform – if it’s hard to use and slow, it’s time to change up to an ATS solution. 

As many daily activities are conducted online now, user expectations are higher than ever, job seekers demand a fast, smooth experience from the get-go.

By offering an automated, simplified, fast hiring process from start to finish, candidates will perceive your company, or organization, to be agile, innovative, and modern – a place they would be proud to work and tell their friends and family about. 

A bad experience, however, would turn many off, and with the many feedback and commentary platforms available today, they could share their negative views on social media, job boards, and networking websites.

7. Build valuable talent pools

As and when positions were filled in the past, the information and data of the other applicants were usually filed in a back office or disposed of. 

For small teams with limited resources, the inability to access this information - to build a talent pool - was a big opportunity lost.

Why? A talent pool, consisting of candidates considered for previous roles, provides extra options for companies, because while they were unsuccessful then, they have the qualifications to fill future positions. 

With a strong talent pool available, companies can reduce both time-to-hire and costs by tapping already qualified, pre-screened candidates when a role opens. 

While building a talent pool manually was time and effort-consuming, an ATS system with its categorization functions can score and group “high potential” qualified candidates within the ATS. Candidates can be categorized based on skills, experience, education, and more.

By engaging past and passive candidates, your talent pool will become deeper and wider, especially if candidates know you are staying in touch and will consider them if the right role comes up.

8. Always-ready support

Small teams facing technical support challenges – whether help is limited or delayed – won’t have those issues if they adopt an ATS provided by a reputable supplier. 

Manatal, for example, provides 7/5 online assistance wherever the customer is located. 

In addition to video support and documentation, clients can seek live chat assistance – service teams are available from Monday to Friday with your questions and on weekends for urgent requests. 

ATS platforms have leveled the hiring playing field, enabling small recruitment teams to enjoy the same technical features and functionalities adopted by large corporate organizations. 

With streamlined processes and candidate data stored in a central online place, your team can find new ways to collaborate and introduce initiatives to attract and secure top talent faster – no matter where they reside.

If you want to try:

  • Reporting capabilities, which can help you extract useful insight from your past processes to improve the future ones.
  • Scheduling tools and calendar integrations, which can help you schedule phone screens and interviews fast and minimize back-and-forth communications.
  • Built-in templates, which help you post job ads and send emails to candidates fast, without writing the text from scratch every time.
  • Interview scorecards, which can make the shift towards structured interviews smoother.
  • Assessment integrations, which help you evaluate candidates more objectively.

Manatal invites you to start a 14-day free trial here to see for yourself how our combined ATS and recruitment CRM solution can significantly improve your hiring reach, speed, and impact.

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