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Feeling overwhelmed by the huge amount of data you handle on a day-to-day basis?

If this is you, consider using hiring tools to make finding talent easier. Learn how an applicant tracking system works to see if a software solution could improve your hiring process.

What Is ATS?

Hiring professionals use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to manage the hiring process. An ATS solution helps you organize, source, and screen candidates.

Applicant tracking software simplifies candidate management at each recruitment step. All your information is stored in one, streamlined space.

Use the data to screen candidates, schedule interviews, check references, and complete paperwork. Then, organize candidates by job order, skill set, or interest level.

Why Companies Use Applicant Tracking Systems?

An applicant tracking system can improve your recruiting efforts. You can use the software to stay organized and provide a better candidate experience.

An ATS allows you to stay on top of communications, so candidates aren’t left in the dark for long time periods.

An ATS solution also provides recruitment metrics that are essential for measuring hiring success. By reviewing data, you can see what is and isn’t working. Use applicant tracking software to test hiring methods and make smart decisions.

For example, an applicant tracking system shows where candidates find job postings. You will find the number of applicants you received from job boards, your website, and referrals. With this information, you can focus on the channel that sources the most candidates.

Managing candidates with an applicant tracking system can save you time and money. ATS solutions help you source talent, make successful placements, and build your network.

How Do Applicant Tracking Systems Work?

Using an ATS for your hiring process is simple. Not sure what you can do with an ATS solution? Take a look at how an applicant tracking system works and what each feature does.

1. Job Posting

To source qualified applicants, job seekers need to be able to find your job listing. You can use an ATS to post open positions on your website and job boards.

Applicant tracking systems integrate with the job boards you use. You can publish listings from the software and collect applications. As candidates submit resumes, your ATS organizes the data to help you narrow down your search.

When you post a job description using an ATS, make sure it will attract the candidates you want. The description must be thorough and engaging. Candidates need to know the job responsibilities, your business’s values, and the salary range.

2. Spreadsheet Importing

One big concern you might have about integrating an ATS into your hiring process is moving all your existing data to the software. If you have a lot of spreadsheets with contacts, candidate statuses, and recruiting stats, don’t worry. You can import spreadsheets into the applicant tracking solution.

The spreadsheet importing feature is very convenient when you start using an ATS. You don’t waste hours entering your data into the software. Instead, you can quickly import the spreadsheets.

The applicant tracking system will organize the imported information so that all your hiring data is in one place.

3. Resume Importing

As a hiring professional, you receive resumes from different sources. Comparing candidates can be difficult when you get applications from multiple channels.

An applicant tracking system imports a resume so that you can view them within the software. You can scan and upload physical resumes, as well as import resumes you receive in your inbox or from a job board.

You don’t want to miss out on talent because you can’t find someone’s resume. Importing resumes eliminates the risk of losing candidate documents. You can easily find resumes when you need them.

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4. Resume Parsing

If you’re like many hiring professionals, you don’t have time to analyze every resume and eliminate each unqualified candidate by hand. Resume parsing sifts through resumes for you, so you can focus on securing talent.

Every candidate sets up their resume using a unique format. Because resumes are structured differently, it can be hard to weigh applicants against each other. Resume parsing extracts information from resumes and enters it into a standard form.

Once a resume is parsed, the ATS organizes the candidates and matches them to a job description. The software shows you the top candidates, saving you hours of work.

5. Email Marketing

Email marketing is a versatile tool for attracting new candidates and growing your network. But, sending out emails takes time.

With an ATS, you can automate your email campaigns. The software lets you create personalized emails, select email lists, and schedule messages in advance. Use an applicant tracking system to share open jobs and follow up with candidates.

7. Candidate Tracking

Receiving resumes is just the beginning of the recruiting process. You need to track candidates as they move through the recruitment pipeline. With an applicant tracking system, you can see how candidates advance.

An ATS tracks when a candidate receives an interview is offered a job and is placed. You can also find out whether a candidate accepted or rejected an offer. And, you can keep records of candidates you are no longer considering.

Use candidate tracking to categorize candidates based on skills and interests. Organizing applicants provide a continuous candidate pool that you can return to in the future.

8. Collaboration

If you work within a hiring team, you need to be able to share recruiting information with your co-workers.

Applicant tracking systems are often cloud-based, so you can access them from any device with an internet connection. This allows hiring professionals to use the software on multiple devices.

To access the ATS, you will create a login.

Some applicant tracking solutions allow multiple logins, so several people can use the software at the same time. All the members of the hiring team can stay on the same page by viewing up-to-date information about candidates.

Online applicant tracking systems make it easy for team members to work from different locations or remotely.

Hiring professionals have more flexible work options, which can increase productivity and employee satisfaction.

Written By
Amanda Cameron is a content writer at Patriot Software Company, the parent company of Top Echelon, LLC and Patriot Software, LLC. Top Echelon started solely as a split placement network, but has expanded over the years to offer recruiting software for applicant tracking, contract staffing services, and recruitment web design. At Patriot, she explains difficult recruiting, accounting, and payroll topics for small business.

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