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HR Tech & Automation

What is an Applicant Tracking System ATS?

Jul 10, 2024

Companies often handle multiple job openings simultaneously, receiving numerous CVs for each position. An Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is a software application that helps organizations manage these CVs and candidates for hiring and recruitment purposes.

As the name implies, an ATS tracks potential candidates through each stage of the hiring process, making it easier for recruiters and keeping candidates informed about their application status.

An ATS automates a company’s recruiting operations and provides a central repository for collecting candidate information including CVs and applications. With automation and screening functionalities, an ATS helps recruiters narrow the applicant pool and highlights top candidates for the job by using algorithms that match candidates to job descriptions.

At its core, an ATS helps you manage every stage of the recruiting process, from posting a job opening to collecting applications and making hires, all while delivering greater overall efficiency and streamlining your hiring process.

An ATS can sometimes be confused with recruiting software, but there is a difference. See recruiting software for a more detailed explanation.

How do Applicant Tracking Systems work?

An Applicant Tracking System tracks your candidates’ activity, automating all stages that would otherwise require manual data entry. A good ATS will track all activity from the candidate’s CV in your inbox through to final placement (and beyond), freeing up recruiters to focus on building relationships. Because the ATS captures all this data in real time, it can also be used for real-time reporting and analytics to improve your processes.

There are seven main stages in the recruiting process that an ATS will help companies manage more efficiently. By bringing this process together, companies can deliver a streamlined recruitment process for both their team and their candidates.

Features in an Applicant Tracking System

Each ATS varies based on the software provider, but a good ATS typically offers the following features:

Attract and Source:

  • Build a centralized company career page for efficient sourcing

  • Integrate and post jobs to multiple job boards

  • Implement an employee referral program

Track and Collaborate:

  • Monitor candidate sources across various recruiting platforms

  • Develop, manage and engage with talent pools

  • Manage individual hiring pipelines for each open position

  • Provide interview kits and structured evaluation tools

  • Offer interview scheduling functionality

  • Unify communication with tools for notes, feedback forms, and messaging to enhance teamwork

Hire and Analyze:

  • Send and manage job offers

  • Utilize analytics tools for data-driven insights

  • Integration with other HR platforms for smooth workflow

Many ATS systems also offer connectivity to other recruiting software technologies for a comprehensive technology solution. These can include online call and messaging platforms, and video conferencing which are used by recruiters daily.

Why use an Applicant Tracking System?

Finding the ideal candidates and placing them is getting tougher due to a lack of talent. An ATS can aid recruitment companies and organizations in sourcing, hiring, and retaining top-tier talent.

A good ATS can be what it takes to drive a recruiting operation toward greater levels of productivity, profitability, and effectiveness. Properly implemented, it increases the productivity of recruiters, saves time, and sets an organized framework for recruitment processes. Companies using an ATS report higher placement rates and less inefficient time than those not using one. In fact, 94% of recruiters and hiring professionals say their ATS or recruiting software has positively impacted their hiring process.

Who uses Applicant Tracking Systems?

The majority of large companies and almost all recruiting agencies use an applicant tracking system to manage their job applications. But most applicants don't realize their resumes are being fed into an ATS; the applicant just logs into a company's career page, job board, website, or social media platform to submit their information.

Mainly, the ATS interface is used by recruiters since they rely on the interface to track applicants and manage them throughout any stage of recruitment. In instances where the ATS has analytical tools set up within the organization, the Recruitment manager, the Directors, and the CEOs can use the tool to track how well or how bad hiring is generally performing and also analyze recruiter effectiveness per se.

Top benefits of an Applicant Tracking System

Conducting the recruiting process via ATS has several advantages.

  • Advanced Placements and Higher Margins: Maximizes the performance of recruiters through automated workflow processes and easy access to information.

  • Better Organization: An easy-to-use system keeps recruiters organized and increases their permanent placement rates, as well as temporary shift placement.

  • Increased Efficiency and Profitability: More placements combined with increased efficiency only logically lead to an improved bottom line in profit margins.

  • Better Candidate Experience: Provides better experience to candidates, resulting in improved retention and redeployment rates. A robust ATS will keep all candidate data in a single location, giving recruiters an upper hand in responding faster and more consistently to potentials.

  • Data-driven decision making: allows management the visibility to key metrics that facilitate coaching of staff on activity tracking and empowers executives with ad hoc reports to make informed decisions on scale and growth opportunities.

How to choose the best Applicant Tracking System

Begin with a detailed needs analysis. Engage with all levels of stakeholders to review your recruitment challenges and define the KPIs you would like to improve. Prioritize ATS features by their potential impact on these KPIs, ensuring the chosen system really can help in areas important to you and deliver measurable value.

Second, define your ideal recruitment ecosystem. Create a detailed idea of how you think your ideal hiring process would look, and, at every stage, point out exactly how an applicant tracking system is going to make things better. This will include integration with other HR solutions already in place and room for scalability in the future. After all, a great ATS should facilitate hiring, onboarding, and retention.

Finally, thoroughly research the marketplace for an ATS. Visit industry conferences. Use your professional networks to learn more. Expertly prepare a shortlist of vendors sharing your vision, then build a custom scoring system that will let you objectively compare options. This will help you choose an ATS that will cover your current and future needs.

How much do Applicant Tracking Systems cost?

The smallest plans for small businesses can run from $50 to $100 per month. This would probably include essential features like posting jobs, tracking applicants, and basic reporting. The mid-level plans, usually preferred by medium-sized companies, cost in the range of $200-$400 per month and include some advanced features, such as customized workflows and integration capabilities, among others.

The premium ones will cost more than $500-$1000 per month, or higher if the providers offer custom features and development, these prices are aimed at large enterprises or those with highly complex hiring processes. Some of the things that turn on by default in such high-end solutions include extended personalization options, AI capabilities, advanced reporting, state-of-the-art data security and analytics with dedicated support.

Also, some vendors offer per-user pricing models allowing organizations to scale their ATS investment as they grow. This therefore implies that the review in terms of need and comparison among different providers should be done quite carefully to derive a cost-effective solution for the unique recruitment challenges.

Related Terms

Recruiting Software

Recruiting Software helps agencies and organizations improve the hiring process on a large scale, encompassing an ATS but also offering tools like automation, marketing systems, and reporting functionalities.

HR Software

HR Software supports various HR activities, including recruitment, payroll, administration, employee information, and performance management in a central system. It differs from recruiting software by going beyond recruitment to track employee information and manage payroll and administration.

CRM Software

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems help businesses manage relationships with candidates and clients, improving customer experience and increasing sales and profitability. CRMs store data and manage passive and active candidates and clients, while an ATS focuses on managing applicants. Most businesses invest in a CRM & ATS that integrate or come as an all-in-one solution for a seamless experience.

About Hireforce

Hireforce is the next recruitment software designed with simplicity, flexibility, and collaboration in mind. We equip excellent teams with robust tools to manage candidates effectively, encourage teamwork, and simplify decision-making for a better, optimal hiring experience.

Ready to level up your hiring? We're currently in Beta and offering a 6 months free trial with full features and dedicated support. Sign up now and experience the future of recruitment!


HR Tech & Automation

What is an Applicant Tracking System ATS?

Jul 10, 2024

Companies often handle multiple job openings simultaneously, receiving numerous CVs for each position. An Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is a software application that helps organizations manage these CVs and candidates for hiring and recruitment purposes.

As the name implies, an ATS tracks potential candidates through each stage of the hiring process, making it easier for recruiters and keeping candidates informed about their application status.

An ATS automates a company’s recruiting operations and provides a central repository for collecting candidate information including CVs and applications. With automation and screening functionalities, an ATS helps recruiters narrow the applicant pool and highlights top candidates for the job by using algorithms that match candidates to job descriptions.

At its core, an ATS helps you manage every stage of the recruiting process, from posting a job opening to collecting applications and making hires, all while delivering greater overall efficiency and streamlining your hiring process.

An ATS can sometimes be confused with recruiting software, but there is a difference. See recruiting software for a more detailed explanation.

How do Applicant Tracking Systems work?

An Applicant Tracking System tracks your candidates’ activity, automating all stages that would otherwise require manual data entry. A good ATS will track all activity from the candidate’s CV in your inbox through to final placement (and beyond), freeing up recruiters to focus on building relationships. Because the ATS captures all this data in real time, it can also be used for real-time reporting and analytics to improve your processes.

There are seven main stages in the recruiting process that an ATS will help companies manage more efficiently. By bringing this process together, companies can deliver a streamlined recruitment process for both their team and their candidates.

Features in an Applicant Tracking System

Each ATS varies based on the software provider, but a good ATS typically offers the following features:

Attract and Source:

  • Build a centralized company career page for efficient sourcing

  • Integrate and post jobs to multiple job boards

  • Implement an employee referral program

Track and Collaborate:

  • Monitor candidate sources across various recruiting platforms

  • Develop, manage and engage with talent pools

  • Manage individual hiring pipelines for each open position

  • Provide interview kits and structured evaluation tools

  • Offer interview scheduling functionality

  • Unify communication with tools for notes, feedback forms, and messaging to enhance teamwork

Hire and Analyze:

  • Send and manage job offers

  • Utilize analytics tools for data-driven insights

  • Integration with other HR platforms for smooth workflow

Many ATS systems also offer connectivity to other recruiting software technologies for a comprehensive technology solution. These can include online call and messaging platforms, and video conferencing which are used by recruiters daily.

Why use an Applicant Tracking System?

Finding the ideal candidates and placing them is getting tougher due to a lack of talent. An ATS can aid recruitment companies and organizations in sourcing, hiring, and retaining top-tier talent.

A good ATS can be what it takes to drive a recruiting operation toward greater levels of productivity, profitability, and effectiveness. Properly implemented, it increases the productivity of recruiters, saves time, and sets an organized framework for recruitment processes. Companies using an ATS report higher placement rates and less inefficient time than those not using one. In fact, 94% of recruiters and hiring professionals say their ATS or recruiting software has positively impacted their hiring process.

Who uses Applicant Tracking Systems?

The majority of large companies and almost all recruiting agencies use an applicant tracking system to manage their job applications. But most applicants don't realize their resumes are being fed into an ATS; the applicant just logs into a company's career page, job board, website, or social media platform to submit their information.

Mainly, the ATS interface is used by recruiters since they rely on the interface to track applicants and manage them throughout any stage of recruitment. In instances where the ATS has analytical tools set up within the organization, the Recruitment manager, the Directors, and the CEOs can use the tool to track how well or how bad hiring is generally performing and also analyze recruiter effectiveness per se.

Top benefits of an Applicant Tracking System

Conducting the recruiting process via ATS has several advantages.

  • Advanced Placements and Higher Margins: Maximizes the performance of recruiters through automated workflow processes and easy access to information.

  • Better Organization: An easy-to-use system keeps recruiters organized and increases their permanent placement rates, as well as temporary shift placement.

  • Increased Efficiency and Profitability: More placements combined with increased efficiency only logically lead to an improved bottom line in profit margins.

  • Better Candidate Experience: Provides better experience to candidates, resulting in improved retention and redeployment rates. A robust ATS will keep all candidate data in a single location, giving recruiters an upper hand in responding faster and more consistently to potentials.

  • Data-driven decision making: allows management the visibility to key metrics that facilitate coaching of staff on activity tracking and empowers executives with ad hoc reports to make informed decisions on scale and growth opportunities.

How to choose the best Applicant Tracking System

Begin with a detailed needs analysis. Engage with all levels of stakeholders to review your recruitment challenges and define the KPIs you would like to improve. Prioritize ATS features by their potential impact on these KPIs, ensuring the chosen system really can help in areas important to you and deliver measurable value.

Second, define your ideal recruitment ecosystem. Create a detailed idea of how you think your ideal hiring process would look, and, at every stage, point out exactly how an applicant tracking system is going to make things better. This will include integration with other HR solutions already in place and room for scalability in the future. After all, a great ATS should facilitate hiring, onboarding, and retention.

Finally, thoroughly research the marketplace for an ATS. Visit industry conferences. Use your professional networks to learn more. Expertly prepare a shortlist of vendors sharing your vision, then build a custom scoring system that will let you objectively compare options. This will help you choose an ATS that will cover your current and future needs.

How much do Applicant Tracking Systems cost?

The smallest plans for small businesses can run from $50 to $100 per month. This would probably include essential features like posting jobs, tracking applicants, and basic reporting. The mid-level plans, usually preferred by medium-sized companies, cost in the range of $200-$400 per month and include some advanced features, such as customized workflows and integration capabilities, among others.

The premium ones will cost more than $500-$1000 per month, or higher if the providers offer custom features and development, these prices are aimed at large enterprises or those with highly complex hiring processes. Some of the things that turn on by default in such high-end solutions include extended personalization options, AI capabilities, advanced reporting, state-of-the-art data security and analytics with dedicated support.

Also, some vendors offer per-user pricing models allowing organizations to scale their ATS investment as they grow. This therefore implies that the review in terms of need and comparison among different providers should be done quite carefully to derive a cost-effective solution for the unique recruitment challenges.

Related Terms

Recruiting Software

Recruiting Software helps agencies and organizations improve the hiring process on a large scale, encompassing an ATS but also offering tools like automation, marketing systems, and reporting functionalities.

HR Software

HR Software supports various HR activities, including recruitment, payroll, administration, employee information, and performance management in a central system. It differs from recruiting software by going beyond recruitment to track employee information and manage payroll and administration.

CRM Software

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems help businesses manage relationships with candidates and clients, improving customer experience and increasing sales and profitability. CRMs store data and manage passive and active candidates and clients, while an ATS focuses on managing applicants. Most businesses invest in a CRM & ATS that integrate or come as an all-in-one solution for a seamless experience.

About Hireforce

Hireforce is the next recruitment software designed with simplicity, flexibility, and collaboration in mind. We equip excellent teams with robust tools to manage candidates effectively, encourage teamwork, and simplify decision-making for a better, optimal hiring experience.

Ready to level up your hiring? We're currently in Beta and offering a 6 months free trial with full features and dedicated support. Sign up now and experience the future of recruitment!


HR Tech & Automation

What is an Applicant Tracking System ATS?

Jul 10, 2024

Companies often handle multiple job openings simultaneously, receiving numerous CVs for each position. An Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is a software application that helps organizations manage these CVs and candidates for hiring and recruitment purposes.

As the name implies, an ATS tracks potential candidates through each stage of the hiring process, making it easier for recruiters and keeping candidates informed about their application status.

An ATS automates a company’s recruiting operations and provides a central repository for collecting candidate information including CVs and applications. With automation and screening functionalities, an ATS helps recruiters narrow the applicant pool and highlights top candidates for the job by using algorithms that match candidates to job descriptions.

At its core, an ATS helps you manage every stage of the recruiting process, from posting a job opening to collecting applications and making hires, all while delivering greater overall efficiency and streamlining your hiring process.

An ATS can sometimes be confused with recruiting software, but there is a difference. See recruiting software for a more detailed explanation.

How do Applicant Tracking Systems work?

An Applicant Tracking System tracks your candidates’ activity, automating all stages that would otherwise require manual data entry. A good ATS will track all activity from the candidate’s CV in your inbox through to final placement (and beyond), freeing up recruiters to focus on building relationships. Because the ATS captures all this data in real time, it can also be used for real-time reporting and analytics to improve your processes.

There are seven main stages in the recruiting process that an ATS will help companies manage more efficiently. By bringing this process together, companies can deliver a streamlined recruitment process for both their team and their candidates.

Features in an Applicant Tracking System

Each ATS varies based on the software provider, but a good ATS typically offers the following features:

Attract and Source:

  • Build a centralized company career page for efficient sourcing

  • Integrate and post jobs to multiple job boards

  • Implement an employee referral program

Track and Collaborate:

  • Monitor candidate sources across various recruiting platforms

  • Develop, manage and engage with talent pools

  • Manage individual hiring pipelines for each open position

  • Provide interview kits and structured evaluation tools

  • Offer interview scheduling functionality

  • Unify communication with tools for notes, feedback forms, and messaging to enhance teamwork

Hire and Analyze:

  • Send and manage job offers

  • Utilize analytics tools for data-driven insights

  • Integration with other HR platforms for smooth workflow

Many ATS systems also offer connectivity to other recruiting software technologies for a comprehensive technology solution. These can include online call and messaging platforms, and video conferencing which are used by recruiters daily.

Why use an Applicant Tracking System?

Finding the ideal candidates and placing them is getting tougher due to a lack of talent. An ATS can aid recruitment companies and organizations in sourcing, hiring, and retaining top-tier talent.

A good ATS can be what it takes to drive a recruiting operation toward greater levels of productivity, profitability, and effectiveness. Properly implemented, it increases the productivity of recruiters, saves time, and sets an organized framework for recruitment processes. Companies using an ATS report higher placement rates and less inefficient time than those not using one. In fact, 94% of recruiters and hiring professionals say their ATS or recruiting software has positively impacted their hiring process.

Who uses Applicant Tracking Systems?

The majority of large companies and almost all recruiting agencies use an applicant tracking system to manage their job applications. But most applicants don't realize their resumes are being fed into an ATS; the applicant just logs into a company's career page, job board, website, or social media platform to submit their information.

Mainly, the ATS interface is used by recruiters since they rely on the interface to track applicants and manage them throughout any stage of recruitment. In instances where the ATS has analytical tools set up within the organization, the Recruitment manager, the Directors, and the CEOs can use the tool to track how well or how bad hiring is generally performing and also analyze recruiter effectiveness per se.

Top benefits of an Applicant Tracking System

Conducting the recruiting process via ATS has several advantages.

  • Advanced Placements and Higher Margins: Maximizes the performance of recruiters through automated workflow processes and easy access to information.

  • Better Organization: An easy-to-use system keeps recruiters organized and increases their permanent placement rates, as well as temporary shift placement.

  • Increased Efficiency and Profitability: More placements combined with increased efficiency only logically lead to an improved bottom line in profit margins.

  • Better Candidate Experience: Provides better experience to candidates, resulting in improved retention and redeployment rates. A robust ATS will keep all candidate data in a single location, giving recruiters an upper hand in responding faster and more consistently to potentials.

  • Data-driven decision making: allows management the visibility to key metrics that facilitate coaching of staff on activity tracking and empowers executives with ad hoc reports to make informed decisions on scale and growth opportunities.

How to choose the best Applicant Tracking System

Begin with a detailed needs analysis. Engage with all levels of stakeholders to review your recruitment challenges and define the KPIs you would like to improve. Prioritize ATS features by their potential impact on these KPIs, ensuring the chosen system really can help in areas important to you and deliver measurable value.

Second, define your ideal recruitment ecosystem. Create a detailed idea of how you think your ideal hiring process would look, and, at every stage, point out exactly how an applicant tracking system is going to make things better. This will include integration with other HR solutions already in place and room for scalability in the future. After all, a great ATS should facilitate hiring, onboarding, and retention.

Finally, thoroughly research the marketplace for an ATS. Visit industry conferences. Use your professional networks to learn more. Expertly prepare a shortlist of vendors sharing your vision, then build a custom scoring system that will let you objectively compare options. This will help you choose an ATS that will cover your current and future needs.

How much do Applicant Tracking Systems cost?

The smallest plans for small businesses can run from $50 to $100 per month. This would probably include essential features like posting jobs, tracking applicants, and basic reporting. The mid-level plans, usually preferred by medium-sized companies, cost in the range of $200-$400 per month and include some advanced features, such as customized workflows and integration capabilities, among others.

The premium ones will cost more than $500-$1000 per month, or higher if the providers offer custom features and development, these prices are aimed at large enterprises or those with highly complex hiring processes. Some of the things that turn on by default in such high-end solutions include extended personalization options, AI capabilities, advanced reporting, state-of-the-art data security and analytics with dedicated support.

Also, some vendors offer per-user pricing models allowing organizations to scale their ATS investment as they grow. This therefore implies that the review in terms of need and comparison among different providers should be done quite carefully to derive a cost-effective solution for the unique recruitment challenges.

Related Terms

Recruiting Software

Recruiting Software helps agencies and organizations improve the hiring process on a large scale, encompassing an ATS but also offering tools like automation, marketing systems, and reporting functionalities.

HR Software

HR Software supports various HR activities, including recruitment, payroll, administration, employee information, and performance management in a central system. It differs from recruiting software by going beyond recruitment to track employee information and manage payroll and administration.

CRM Software

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems help businesses manage relationships with candidates and clients, improving customer experience and increasing sales and profitability. CRMs store data and manage passive and active candidates and clients, while an ATS focuses on managing applicants. Most businesses invest in a CRM & ATS that integrate or come as an all-in-one solution for a seamless experience.

About Hireforce

Hireforce is the next recruitment software designed with simplicity, flexibility, and collaboration in mind. We equip excellent teams with robust tools to manage candidates effectively, encourage teamwork, and simplify decision-making for a better, optimal hiring experience.

Ready to level up your hiring? We're currently in Beta and offering a 6 months free trial with full features and dedicated support. Sign up now and experience the future of recruitment!


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