How the Right Applicant Tracking System Improves Candidate Experience

Posted by Mark Jackson on Thu, May, 11, 2017 @ 13:05 PM

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According to a recent report from Software Advice, nearly 26% of recruiters said using an applicant tracking system is one of the top contributing factors for applicants having a good candidate experience. A good applicant tracking system allows your company to guide every candidate through your hiring process from beginning to end with ease. Unfortunately, not every company can take advantage of this streamlining, and it costs them money and candidates. And of course, some systems are better than others. So as always, it’s important to ask the right questions about your applicant tracking system to see if it’s your process or your software that’s making your organization’s candidate experience terrible.

 Is your ATS simple?

A good ATS is simple and to the point. It helps guide applicants through the process, and makes it as easy as possible. At its best, an applicant tracking system is invisible. The last thing you want your ATS to do is to be overcomplicated, confusing and an extremely long process for the candidate, making applicants focus on the how of application process rather than the why. A recent study showed that almost 49% of candidates think extremely long applications were a major deterrent to applying for the position. If your applicant tracking system makes applying more complicated than it should be, drop it. A great ATS should be as easy to navigate as a consumer website, why isn’t yours?

Tweet This: 49% of candidates think extremely long applications were a major deterrent.

Is it Effective?

In order to have the best candidate experience, your ATS needs to do what it sets out to. For your applicant tracking system to be effective, here’s what it needs to have: requisition management, automated workflow, applicant-facing tools, pre-screening, scoring and compliance. Analyzing your current situation, your job posts, and how your ATS feeds into the rest of your hiring process can allow you to improve every part of hiring, but only if your ATS can deliver on its part of the bargain. If you feel like you have to work around your applicant tracking system instead of with it, it’s not effective. Once every element of your hiring (including your ATS) works in harmony, every part of your hiring will end up benefiting. Ask your new hires how they feel about your applicant tracking system and be ready to process their honest answers.

Tweet This: For your applicant tracking system to be effective, here’s what it needs to have:

Is it convenient?

Have you ever been to the hospital, reached the front desk to tell someone your emergency, then, once you finally reach the emergency room, the nurse asks you what’s wrong? And then, once the doctor finally comes to check on you, they also ask you what’s wrong? It’s frustrating to have to repeat yourself, especially when you’re in need of dire care. When something like this happens, all you can think to yourself is, “are these people even talking to each other?” It’s incredibly frustrating annoying, and while hospitals may have their reasons for the lack of communication, the amount of time they waste in treating a patient is all the same. 

Why treat your candidates the same way? After being questioned so many times about who they are and what they do and having to fill in the same information over and over, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that your candidates are dropping out. A recent study showed that companies saw a drop out rate as high as 48% because of a complicated applicant process. Don’t do this to your candidates. It will decrease your talent pool and give you bad reputation as an employer. You need every advantage you can get as an employer looking for talent, and anything keeping you from top talent needs to go.

Tweet This: Companies saw drop out rates as high as 48% because of complicated ATS processes. 

If your current ATS isn’t your company’s standards for hiring and it doesn’t make anything easier for the candidate it may be time to look into a new solution. Your ATS is a key part of your hiring process, so don’t let your current one cost you candidates and your company money. Instead, a good applicant tracking system should expand your talent pool by giving your candidates the most optimal experience. Not sure where to look? Visibility Software’s applicant tracking system is a great place to start.

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Tags: candidate experience, applicant tracking system, ATS, cloud based ATS, recruiting software

Implementing a New ATS? Follow These 5 Tips.

Posted by James Bellew on Thu, Feb, 16, 2017 @ 08:02 AM

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Selecting a  quality applicant tracking system (ATS) that meets your needs is critical for improving your talent acquisition process and results. But if you don’t implement it successfully, even the right ATS technology won’t be much help.  

In this post, we provide five tips that will help you successfully implement a new ATS, enabling you to both get the most value and avoid headaches.  

1. Check vendor references BEFORE negotiating and signing a contract. As part of this reference checking, be sure to ask about the implementation experience. A few questions you might consider asking include:

  1. How difficult was implementation?
  2. How well did the ATS integrate with other software? (This is particularly helpful if the reference uses other software you also use.)
  3. How helpful was the provider with implementation?
  4. What suggestions do the references have based on their implementation experience?

2. Carefully prepare for implementation, including deciding which data to bring over from your old ATS. There’s a famous quotation by Benjamin Franklin: “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Avoid unnecessary implementation problems by being prepared and organized. An important part of this is determining which data you will bring over from your old ATS, and which you won’t. The amount of data you bring over often impacts the length of your implementation process.

3. Test your new ATS. Ensure that it meets your specifications and expectations. Verify you’re getting what you’re paying for—that your new ATS lives up to what you’ve been promised and seen during demos. As part of this, ensure the ATS integrates properly with other software you use. Lackluster integration is a common source of frustration. Don’t let it happen to you.

4. Get users trained fully and effectively on the ATS. This includes recruiters and hiring managers, but also others who will be using it. Ensure they know how to use features and functionality that are important for getting the most value from your new ATS. Those great reporting capabilities don’t do much good if users don’t know they exist, or don’t know how to access or use them.

5. Keep refining after beginning use. Take advantage of valuable updates the provider makes to your ATS. Especially with best-in-class ATSs, taking advantage of new capabilities is key to getting more value. Additionally, give existing users training refreshers as necessary, and ensure new users are trained fully.

Follow these tips. They should help your organization implement your ATS successfully, and help you get great results from the start. 

Are you considering changing to a new ATS? Before you make such an important decision, download “5 Questions to Ask When Switching Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS).It will help you make a smart decision. 

 

Tags: applicant tracking system, ATS, recruiting, cloud based applicant tracking system, cloud based ATS

Selecting Your New ATS: Best-in-Class or End-to-End?

Posted by Mark Jackson on Tue, Jan, 31, 2017 @ 14:01 PM

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One of the most important choices employers face when deciding on a new applicant tracking system is: Do we want a best-in-class (aka best-of-breed) solution, or an ATS that’s part of an end-to-end system? 

It’s an important choice because best-in-class solutions and end-to-end systems have clear advantages. If you make the right choice for your particular needs, there’s a good chance you’ll be happy with the ATS you select. Conversely, if you make the wrong choice, you’re much less likely to be happy to be satisfied with your new ATS. 

Below are primers on understanding best-in-class ATSs versus ATSs that are part of end-to-end systems. 

Primer on Best-in-Class ATSs

These ATSs are dedicated to best-in-class performance and user experience. They integrate with other software solutions that manage post-hire needs, such as training and payroll. 

The advantages of using best-of-breed ATSs include:

  • Greater innovation and more dynamic—potentially creating a competitive advantage
  • Easier to specialize and customize
  • More rapid upgrades

Primer on ATSs That Are Part of End-to-End Systems

End-to-end systems (aka “suites”) are when individual vendors provide all of your HR technology needs, from recruiting software to training to payroll. The ATS is one component of the end-to-end system you use. 

The advantages of using end-to-end systems include:

  • Simplicity
  • Only one vendor
  • Few, if any, integrations required

Which Is the Better Choice?

In recent years, there has been much discussion and debate about whether best-in-class or end-to-end systems are better. It’s a debate without a winner to date. In fact, according to a 2016 Ernst & Young HR technology survey, the percentage of organizations that use best-in-class software is roughly the same as those that use an end-to-end system. 

As noted earlier, however, making the right choice for your particular needs is highly important. For example, if you’re having trouble sourcing and hiring the talent you need, moving to a high-quality best-of-breed system—thanks to greater innovation and customizability—could be a difference-maker. 

The Rise of Easier Integration

One of the biggest HR technology developments in recent years is that integration has become much easier. In fact, more and more best-of-breed software products are even offering a variety of plug-in integrations with other best-of-breed software. Analyst Ward Christman told TrustRadius, “I'm seeing a huge shift towards partnering to meet customer and market needs. This path is becoming easier thanks to better standards and connectivity via APIs and data interchange hubs, with additional ‘alliance building’ resources coming soon to support this need for collaboration.” 

Another analyst, Bryan Wempen, added, “I don't feel like a shift from specialized to suites is happening, actually just the opposite. I see specialization as the trend with a focus on features for interpretation of data and analytics about everything talent.” 

It will be interesting to see if improved integration impacts the best-in-class vs. end-to-end system debate. 

Considering a new ATS? Be sure to download “5 Questions to Ask When Switching Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS).” It will help you select the right ATS for your needs, and implement it successfully.  

 

Tags: applicant tracking system, ATS, recruiting, integrated recruiting system, cloud based applicant tracking system, cloud based ATS

First Step for Selecting a New ATS: Understand Why You Dislike Your Current One!

Posted by Sean Pomeroy on Wed, Jan, 11, 2017 @ 09:01 AM

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You’ve decided to replace your applicant tracking system (ATS). 

Now what? 

Here’s the first thing to do. Before rushing out into the marketplace, take the time to understand your dissatisfaction with your current ATS, and what you want a new ATS to achieve. Understanding exactly why you’re dissatisfied will actually help frame and guide your ATS purchasing decision. 

How do you understand your dissatisfaction with your current ATS? Here are two ways:

  • Think about the root issues, frustrations and innovations that are driving you

to consider switching to a new ATS.

  • Take your current processes and chart out the missing pieces, problems and

bottlenecks, and focus on how you would like a new ATS to address those areas, while not taking away from the existing functionality you would like to retain. 

Next, consider the impact the right new ATS would make in the problem areas you identified, and the potential return on investment. Examples of the ROI may include:

  • Improved average time and cost to fill positions
  • Faster, more accurate hiring—avoid losing top-tier candidates to

competition, and lower turnover due to more accurate hires.

  • Bottlenecks that were once a time drain are no more, allowing more time for

higher valued tasks

  • Improved candidate experience

 Going through this process will go a long way to help you determine the best ATS to achieve your goals. So don’t skip it. 

Considering switching your ATS? Make sure to first read “5 Questions to Ask When Switching Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS).” Download the article to learn how you can select the right ATS for your needs, and implement it successfully.  

Tags: applicant tracking system, ATS, cloud based applicant tracking system, cloud based ATS

7 Advantages of Using a Cloud-Based Applicant Tracking System

Posted by Kimber Crumlish on Wed, Dec, 07, 2016 @ 08:12 AM

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As noted in a TechCrunch article, there’s “little doubt … that nearly every business and every industry is running on software delivered as online services.” 

In HR technology, the spread of cloud-based software continues in full force. According to Gartner, spending on cloud-based HR software will be 50% or more of total HR technology spending by 2017. 

The reason for the proliferation, of course, is cloud-based software has some significant advantages. For example, as detailed in our new article, “5 Questions to Ask When Switching Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS),” a quality cloud-based ATS has the following seven advantages over a traditional on-premise system: 

  1. Access anywhere and anytime. On-premise systems require HR, recruiters and hiring managers to be on-site, but cloud-based systems allow them to retrieve data wherever they’re working, seven days a week, 24 hours a day.

  2. Easier implementation. Because there’s no on-premise system to install/implement.

  3. Reduced IT, capital expenses. There’s no on-premise system to implement or maintain.

  4. Get upgrades quickly. Upgrading an on-premise system can take time and be a significant technical concern, so much so that many companies forego updates. With cloud-based systems, the upgrades are handled by the provider, meaning you get quick, easy access to useful new features.

  5. Integration with other software. Cloud-based systems are becoming easier and easier to integrate with other software, facilitating integration with online job portals, career sites and other SaaS applications. This allows you to access more talent, and to connect your recruiting and HR processes without using an all-in-one system.

  6. Improved user experience. Not only are quality cloud-based systems customizable for employers’ specific needs, but also having the current version eases training and customer service.

  7. Shorter-term commitment. With on-premise systems, the work associated with setting up on-site hardware and software is a major enough task that you want any ATS you use to last for years. 

If you’re considering switching your ATS, consider downloading “5 Questions to Ask When Switching Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS).” It will help you select the right ATS for your needs, and implement it successfully. 

Tags: applicant tracking system, ATS, cloud based applicant tracking system, cloud based ATS