Home > Software Categories > Applicant Tracking System (ATS)
Kara Sherrer Avatar

Written by
Kara Sherrer, Contributing Writer
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Kaiti Norton Avatar

Reviewed by
Kaiti Norton, Managing Editor
Read more HR content →

Kara Sherrer Avatar

Written by
Kara Sherrer, Contributing Writer
Read more by Kara →

Kaiti Norton Avatar

Reviewed by
Kaiti Norton, Managing Editor
Read more HR content →

What is applicant tracking system software?

Applicant tracking system (ATS) software allows recruitment teams to organize and track candidates for more efficient hiring. ATS software streamlines most recruitment operations, including creating job posts, screening candidates, and scheduling interviews. This results in decreased time-to-fill for open positions.

The best applicant tracking systems also have built-in, automated communication channels to centralize communication between recruiters and candidates. Similarly, most platforms offer internal collaboration features so hiring teams can make faster decisions and avoid bottlenecks.

We reviewed 14 top ATS software solutions and narrowed our list of recommendations to the best of the best:

  • Breezy HR is the best standalone ATS for SMBs.
  • Bullhorn is the best standalone ATS for large companies and staffing firms.
  • Freshteam is the best starter ATS for small businesses looking for a free solution.
  • JazzHR is the best ATS for fast-growing businesses.
  • BambooHR is the best HR suite that includes applicant tracking.
  • Workable offers the best overall ATS feature set for the price.

Oct. 19, 2023: Kaiti Norton reviewed the pricing information for each vendor to ensure accuracy.

Aug. 30, 2023: We added links to other TechnologyAdvice pages for further reading.

Aug. 25, 2023: We added vendor videos for BambooHR and Workable. We also tidied up some formatting details.

Aug. 16, 2023: We added pricing, some product screenshots, and an analysis of why we chose our top products. We also added information on when to upgrade your ATS.

Jun. 12, 2023: We restructured the page to put our expert recommendations front and center. We also added dynamic design elements to improve the visual flow of information.

Apr. 25, 2023: We added our expert recommendations and made stylistic changes for simpler page navigation.

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We picked our recommendations with you in mind.

First, we evaluated 14 of the leading Applicant Tracking Systems available on the market today. We used vendor demos, technical documentation, and user reviews from customers like you to compile our research.

We then narrowed our selections to the platforms that best addressed the most common concerns among ATS users. These factors include estimated total cost, breadth and depth of functionality, technical complexity, scalability, and integrations.

We looked into the following vendors during the course of our research:

  • Freshteam.
  • JazzHR.
  • Breezy HR.
  • Rippling.
  • Greenhouse.
  • Zoho Recruit.
  • BambooHR.
  • Workable.
  • Bullhorn.
  • Recruit CRM.
  • Recruitee.
  • Hireology.
  • Lever.
  • Teamtailor.
  • Pinpoint.

As the market changes, we reevaluate our choices so you always receive the best insight for your purchasing decision.

What is the best ATS software?

Breezy HR: Best standalone ATS for SMBs


Pros

  • The drag-and-drop interface is easy to navigate.
  • More than 800 HR and recruitment templates are available.
  • Dozens of integrations cover the majority of HR functions.

Cons

  • Interview scheduling lacks customization options.
  • The system will sometimes glitch or load slowly.
  • Features can’t be added à la carte, and it’s not always worth the jump to the more expensive recruiting plans.

Unlike other HR software companies, which usually offer an ATS as an add-on or roll it into more advanced plans, Breezy HR is solely focused on the recruitment process. Plus, it has a forever-free version of its software, which makes it a great fit for small and midsize companies that already have their HR software stack figured out and are looking to add applicant tracking.

Breezy is committed to digitizing and automating the hiring process, from searching for candidates to scheduling interviews. Breezy allows users to set up custom pipelines for every step of the recruiting process and to view the pipeline visually, so they don’t lose track of where a candidate is.

Mobile app

In today’s competitive labor market, fast response times are essential to snapping up the best talent. Breezy’s mobile app allows recruiters to respond quickly, so the hiring process never stalls.

Job site posting

Not all candidates visit every job site, meaning hiring teams need to cast a wide net. Breezy allows teams to post to more than 50 job sites at once, significantly increasing the reach of a single job posting without any extra effort or time.

Custom questionnaires

Screening potential employees upfront can help talent acquisition teams find qualified candidates faster. Breezy gives users the option to create custom questionnaires for employee screenings, so they can ensure their most important recruiting criteria are satisfied.

Standard tiers

Bootstrap

Free forever.

Includes unlimited users, but you only have access to candidate data from the past 30 days.

Startup

$157/mo.*

14-day free trial

Includes everything in Bootstrap, plus:

  • Unlimited access to candidates and number of open job positions.
  • Access to background checks.
  • Interview self-scheduling.
  • Reporting.
  • Mobile app.

Growth

$273/mo.*

14-day free trial

Includes everything in Startup, plus:

  • Reference checking.
  • Employee referrals.
  • eSignatures.

Business

$439/mo.*

14-day free trial

Includes everything in Growth, plus:

  • Candidate nurture campaigns.
  • Customizable roles and permissions.
  • HR software integrations.
Add-ons
  • Pro plan: Contact sales.
  • SMS/text messaging: Starting at $165/mo.
  • Candidate match score: Starting at $165/mo.
  • Incognito apply: Starting at $165/mo.

*Prices are based on annual billing.

With its scalable price tiers, including a forever free option, Breezy HR is the most versatile ATS for small and medium businesses that expect their hiring needs to grow. Besides its user-friendly interface for recruiters new to ATS, Breezy HR’s advanced workflows and email nurture campaigns are great for midsized companies needing more strategic features to engage passive candidates.

Sometimes finding the right candidate takes a little extra effort. Read: 6 Creative Ways to Find and Hire Candidates

Bullhorn: Best for large businesses and staffing agencies


Pros

  • More than 100 third-party integrations are available.
  • Customer relationship management (CRM) features are beneficial for staffing agencies.
  • Bullhorn enables personalized, automated candidate outreach.

Cons

  • Bullhorn is more expensive than competitors.
  • An upgrade is necessary to integrate with LinkedIn.
  • The mobile app lags behind those of competitors.

Bullhorn addresses many of the complex recruiting challenges large organizations and staffing firms face. The software suite’s ATS offers nearly every important functionality, including features like candidate sourcing, career portals, unlimited data storage, application programming interface (API) access, and pipeline management.

These advanced features come with a high price tag, even at the base level, which will likely deter smaller companies. But for enterprise companies looking for an ATS with robust analytics, automations, and integrations, Bullhorn should be a top consideration.

Middle- and back-office solutions

As part of Bullhorn’s mission to provide applicant tracking solutions to large and enterprise-level companies, it offers middle- and back-office solutions that are helpful for recruitment agencies, staffing firms, large HR departments, and other big hiring teams.

Vendor management system automation

Large companies who rely on an outside staffing firm or hire many outside contractors will appreciate Bullhorn’s vendor management system (VMS) automation, which speeds up the data entry and recruiting process.

Integration with Bullhorn CRM

In addition to its ATS, Bullhorn also offers a customer relationship management platform that integrates with the ATS. This is helpful for agencies that need a way to manage clients as well as applicants.

Standard tiers

You must contact Bullhorn directly for a custom quote.

Team

Includes:

  • Résumé parsing.
  • Career portal.
  • Candidate management.
  • Sourcing.
  • Standard reporting.

Corporate

Includes everything in Team, plus:

  • API access.
  • LinkedIn integration.
  • Custom fields.
  • Custom workflows.

Enterprise

Includes everything in Corporate, plus:

  • Lead tracking.
  • Opportunity tracking.
  • Pipeline management.
  • Advanced reporting dashboards.

Enterprise Plus

Includes everything in Enterprise, plus:

  • Advanced reporting objects.
  • Visualizations.
Add-ons
  • Bullhorn for Salesforce.
  • Onboarding.
  • Vendor management system automation.
  • Recruitment automation.
  • Messaging.
  • Middle and back office (timesheets and client invoicing).
  • Ad hoc reporting.
  • Bullhorn analytics.

Bullhorn is ideal for enterprises looking for a solution combining an ATS for streamlined candidate pipeline management and a candidate relationship management (CRM) system to keep applicants engaged.

Plus, established staffing agencies can use Bullhorn’s native client portals and invoicing to simplify customer and candidate relationships. Even new recruitment agencies can purchase Bullhorn One for an all-in-one solution to handle recruitment workflows and employee payroll, reducing the need for multiple business software platforms.

Candidate relationships are a critical piece of effective hiring. Learn more and check out our top software picks: Top Candidate Relationship Management Software (2023)

Freshteam: Best starter ATS for small businesses


Editorial note: As of October 2023, Freshworks’ website indicates that it is reimagining Freshteam. As a result, only existing customers can access Freshteam in its current form. New customer signups are paused until further notice.

We will continue to keep you updated on Freshteam’s redesign and modify our product choices as necessary.

Pros

  • Centralized dashboard allows HR teams to view all candidates in one place.
  • Automated notifications.
  • Easy-to-launch career sites.

Cons

  • Integrations are limited.
  • User interface (UI) is slower and less intuitive than competitors.

Freshworks’ applicant tracking system was designed with small businesses in mind. As such, the ATS is included as part of its Freshteam HR software package, and the company also offers other software solutions for sales, marketing, chat, and more.

Freshteam has a forever free version of its system for small businesses with up to 50 employees, making it a great option for smaller businesses that aren’t sure if they need an ATS but want to explore the option. Freshteam will also scale with growing businesses so they don’t have to switch to a different ATS tool later on.

Gmail and calendar sync

Freshteam integrates with Gmail and Google Calendar, so users can sync email communications and interviews with candidates.

Bulk actions

Users can perform some actions in bulk, like updating candidate profiles by advancing them to the next hiring stage, archiving them to the talent pool, or rejecting them. This helps reduce process redundancies and save time.

Job description templates

Freshteam offers templates with preexisting job descriptions for common positions. Users can customize the information and post the listings directly to popular job boards.

Standard tiers

As noted above, Freshworks has paused new Freshteam accounts until further notice. We will continue to monitor news about Freshteam’s future and modify our product choices as necessary.

Free:

Free for up to 50 employees.

Maximum of 3 job postings.

Growth:

$71/mo. + $1.20/employee/mo.

Maximum of 20 job postings.

Pro:

$119/mo. + $2.40/employee/mo.

Maximum of 100 job postings.

Enterprise:

$203/mo. + $4.80/employee/mo.

Unlimited job postings.

For businesses who have never used an ATS, Freshteam offers affordable plans to fit their budgets, including a free version to experiment with before committing to a paid subscription.

Moreover, small businesses can leverage Freshteam’s human resources information system (HRIS) features, including an employee directory, organizational chart, self-service, onboarding, and offboarding capabilities, to consolidate their HR tech stack.

Learn how to combine your HR and recruiting tools under one umbrella: HRIS Integration: Everything You Need to Know

JazzHR: Best ATS for fast-growing businesses


Pros

  • All plans include unlimited users.
  • The software has an easy-to-use interface.
  • Customizable recruiting workflows optimize applicant tracking processes.
  • Automation is available for emails, job postings, offers, and more.

Cons

  • Limited features and job listings are included in the base plan.
  • There is a 6x jump in pricing from the base tier to the middle tier.
  • No dedicated mobile app is available.

JazzHR offers an easy-to-use applicant tracking software, which boasts an intuitive interface and modern features like candidate texting and auto-rejection screening questions. However, businesses should be prepared to spend a sizable budget on JazzHR if they need more than a basic ATS.

Because it offers different pricing tiers for standard companies, recruitment-based organizations (RBOs), and high-volume hiring businesses, JazzHR is the best fit for midsize, fast-growing businesses. Human resource teams should also note that JazzHR is primarily an ATS, so it won’t satisfy HR needs for the rest of the employee life cycle.

Custom branding options

Having custom-branded recruitment materials can increase a company’s appeal to job seekers. JazzHR makes it easy with white-label capabilities that allow businesses to replace the JazzHR branding with their own and improve the candidate experience.

Candidate profiles

The main dashboard includes all necessary information for each candidate, including contact information, internal ratings, comments, interview notes, email communications, and more.

Automated document management

Once a hiring team is ready to extend an offer to a candidate, the onboarding process can move faster with JazzHR’s automated document management features. Offer letters, compliance forms, and other documents can be generated with a few clicks, and all necessary paperwork can be managed from a single central location.

Standard tiers

Hero

$49/mo.*

Includes:

  • Unlimited users.
  • Up to three open jobs.

Plus

$239/mo.*

Includes:

  • Unlimited users.
  • Unlimited jobs.
  • ATS.
  • Interviews.
  • Assessments.

Pro

$359/mo.*

Includes everything in Plus, as well as:

  • eSignatures.
  • Reporting.
  • Compliance.
  • All-access support.
Custom plans
  • High-volume hiring: $99/mo.*
  • RBO: $99/mo.*

*Pricing is based on annual billing.

JazzHR offers a vast array of recruitment features as a standalone ATS, but its pricing is best suited for companies willing to invest more in advanced hiring tools.

Growing businesses may find JazzHR’s unlimited open job positions in its top two tiers especially attractive as their hiring needs expand. For comparison, other competitors, like Freshteam, often limit the number of open roles until their top-paying tier.

BambooHR: Best HR suite that includes ATS


Pros

  • Features like onboarding, offboarding, and performance management support the entire employee life cycle.
  • Offer letter templates add efficiency to the end of the recruitment process.
  • Data and analytics help businesses optimize their HR processes.

Cons

  • Custom recipient lists for mass emails are difficult.
  • Users report some issues with PTO (paid time off) requests being logged correctly.
  • Certain features are either U.S.-only or U.S.-centric, which is limiting for international companies.

BambooHR is known for being an industry leader when it comes to HR software, and that includes its applicant tracking solution. BambooHR is specifically designed for small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs), making it a worthy option for growing companies that want a recruitment tool in addition to other HR software functions.

The software is user-friendly from both an employee’s and employer’s perspective. However, this simplicity may be a drawback for businesses with more complex needs. Some users noted BambooHR couldn’t provide every single ATS functionality they needed once their business grew to a certain size.

For SMBs that need a functional applicant tracking system plus core HR features, however, BambooHR is a fantastic option.

Automatic alerts

Recruiters can avoid missing out on potential applications with automatic alerts that notify users when a candidate is ready to advance. BambooHR also provides automatic alerts for other modules beyond just the applicant tracking system as well.

Communication tools

Messaging features within the app mean HR teams don’t have to use a separate email or chat function to collaborate. This keeps everything centralized within BambooHR and makes it easy to find conversation histories.

Self-onboarding

This feature makes it simple for new employees to fill out HR forms prior to their first day. It also means all documentation can be kept within the BambooHR app instead of having to switch over to a different one for onboarding.

Implementation

BambooHR includes a one-time implementation fee with a project manager. Companies with 20 or fewer employees can opt for the Quickstart Training for $299.

Standard tiers

Essential

  • Up to 20 employees: $108/mo.
  • 21+ employees: $5.40/employee/mo.
  • Volume discount after 25 employees.

Advantage

  • Free trial available.
  • Up to 20 employees: $180/mo.
  • 21+ employees: $9/employee/mo.
  • Volume discount after 30 employees.
Add-ons

Payroll*

  • One-time implementation fee.
  • Up to 20 employees: $150/mo.**
  • 21+ employees: $7.25/employee/mo.**
  • Volume discount applies after 21 employees.

Benefits administration*

  • $5.25/employee/mo.
  • Volume discount applies after 30 employees.

Time tracking

  • $3/employee/mo.
  • Volume discount applies after 30 employees.

Performance management

  • $5.25 per employee, per month.
  • Volume discount applies after 30 or more employees.

*Only available in United States

**Additional factors, like the number of FEINs or the number of states you need payroll for, can affect this price. Please contact BambooHR for specific pricing quotes.

BambooHR’s ATS is excellent for smaller businesses whose hiring needs are sporadic. Features like email and offer letter templates, a mobile app, and integration with the rest of its HR suite allow BambooHR to automate tedious processes for more efficient HR departments.

However, compared to other platforms on our list, BambooHR’s ATS lacks the advanced functionality larger corporations seek for strategic hiring initiatives, such as candidate nurture campaigns and interview management.

Therefore, BambooHR is a better choice if you need a full-scale HR platform with an ATS included.

Learn how to eliminate the manual tasks that slow down your hiring team: HR Automation: The HR Processes & Tasks to Automate

Workable: Best ATS feature set for the price


Pros

  • Proprietary artificial intelligence (AI) functionality optimizes recruitment processes.
  • More than 1,000 job description templates are available.
  • The software supports one-click posting to more than 200 job boards.

Cons

  • The user interface can be difficult to navigate.
  • The platform doesn’t include native onboarding functionality.
  • Pricing options are less flexible than some competitors.

Workable is consistently named one of the top choices for the best applicant tracking systems — and for good reason. It offers a great balance of features for a price that works for most small and midsize businesses. Businesses that need more than entry-level applicant tracking software but aren’t yet ready for an enterprise-level system should consider Workable.

Workable’s features include branded career pages, multiple language options, in-platform texting, automated workflows, and more. It sometimes lacks minor functionalities, such as automatically saving candidate notes to an interview profile, but overall, Workable is a best-in-class recruiting solution.

Chrome extension

Hiring teams that recruit candidates via social media will appreciate Workable’s Google Chrome extension. This feature allows users to import candidates from Twitter and LinkedIn into the applicant tracking software.

Internal job board

In many cases, promoting from within is the best way to fill a job opening. Workable makes this easier with an internal job board that is specifically designed to help hiring managers promote from within the company.

Emphasis on DEI

Workable has built diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) into its recruitment tools. From finding a diverse talent pool to evaluating potential candidates fairly, Workable makes it easier to fulfill DEI hiring key performance indicators (KPIs).

Standard tiers

Workable offers a live demo and a 15-day free trial.

Starter

Includes two active jobs.

  • $149/mo.*
  • Up to 50 employees.

*Monthly billing only.

Add-ons

  • Video interviews: $49/mo.
  • Texting: $39/mo.
  • Assessments: $29/mo.

Standard

Includes unlimited active jobs and assisted account onboarding.

Headcount:

  • 1-20: $299/mo.*
  • 21-50: $409/mo.*
  • 51-100: $609/mo.*
  • 101-250: $949/mo.*
  • 251-500: $1,249/mo.*
  • 500+: Contact sales.

*Prices based on annual billing plan.

Add-ons

  • Video interviews: $99/mo.
  • Texting: $79/mo.
  • Assessments: $59/mo.

Premier

Includes all add-ons, five native language options, SSO support, custom account onboarding, and a dedicated account manager.

Headcount:

  • 1-20: $599/mo.*
  • 21-50: $809/mo.*
  • 51-100: $1,109/mo.*
  • 101-250: $1,449/mo.*
  • 251-500: $1,949/mo.*
  • 500+: Contact sales.

*Annual billing only.

Workable stands out for its unique pricing model, which gives access to most of its platform features in every plan. Although it does not include a free version like Breezy HR or Freshteam, Workable’s lowest pricing tier includes advanced features, like its API, mobile app, offer letter templates, and candidate interview self-scheduling. As a result, companies with more frequent hiring needs can leverage these features without paying extra.

Can AI give your recruitment strategy a boost? Read AI Recruiting: Uses, Advantages, & Disadvantages 2023.

Find your new ATS software

What are the benefits of ATS software?

ATS platforms can increase recruiting efficiency, improve candidate sourcing and engagement, boost quality of hire metrics, and optimize overall recruitment strategies.

Increases efficiency

Saving time and increasing efficiency are some of the best advantages of using ATS solutions compared to traditional application and recruitment procedures. With ATS software, recruiters can automate different tasks in hiring processes, including posting job ads, sending emails and reminders, interview scheduling, and onboarding new hires.

Improves candidate sourcing

The software can help address mission-critical challenges, such as attracting and sourcing top candidates. Many ATS solutions are now enriched with artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities to develop a profile of an ideal candidate, assess and identify skills, and predict success factors. As a result, employers can better understand candidate behavior and target specific applicants across various platforms and channels.

Better candidate engagement

ATS software ensures better candidate engagement by promoting greater visibility across the candidate journey. It helps organizations prevent negative experiences — like lack of visibility and inconsistent communication — that can cause candidate frustration and disinterest. An ATS allows reliable communication and faster response times via automation.

Refines hire quality

Screening candidates standardizes applicant scoring and can help guarantee that hiring managers will only see qualified applicants. Moreover, ATS software maintains a database of people who may be prospects for future job openings.

Read more: How to Measure Quality of Hire

Optimizes recruitment strategies

Hiring professionals can clearly and quickly communicate with other team members and candidates through ATS. Hiring teams can collaborate and share résumés securely within the platform, enabling an organized approach to decision-making.

ATS solutions also come with analytic tools to gauge the success of recruiting and hiring strategies. Recruiters can use real-time data to predict staffing needs and build recruiting pipelines. Analytics equips organizations with critical metrics around costs, quality, and time spent on recruiting activities.

Read more: Recruitment Strategies: How to Prepare for the Future

When should you upgrade your ATS software?

Upgrading your applicant tracking system is not to be taken lightly, and you don’t want to rush into it. Instead, you need to make a deliberate survey of your current ATS capabilities to figure out where it succeeds and where it falls short. If you experience any of the indicators below, then you may want to consider switching platforms.

5 signs you should upgrade your ATS

The hiring team’s subjective experience is an important component of the review process, but when it comes to evaluating the performance of your current ATS software, the numbers don’t lie.

Some of the key ATS metrics you should be tracking include:

  • Time to hire
  • Number of candidates
  • Quality of hire
  • Cost per hire

If any or all of these metrics are significantly lagging behind your targets or have taken a nosedive recently, it’s time to reevaluate your ATS.

One of the greatest benefits of good ATS software is the data and analytics it provides, which help businesses optimize their hiring process and make data-driven decisions about talent acquisition. However, in some cases, the metrics make it difficult to accurately assess recruiting performance because the reporting is difficult to use or interpret.

If the reporting and analytics features of your applicant tracking system aren’t giving you the insight you need to make informed decisions quickly, it might be time to switch to a different ATS that can provide the depth of reporting you need.

The goal of an ATS is to streamline the recruitment process, so if applicants and recruiters are experiencing bottlenecks or redundancies, that’s a major red flag your current platform isn’t working anymore.

Some common culprits to watch out for are applications getting lost or ignored, applicants having to answer the same questions or repeat the same steps multiple times, and delays in scheduling interviews. These issues can negatively impact the candidate experience as well as your employer brand in the long run.

One of the main advantages of a modern ATS is the time savings and added efficiency that come with automating rote tasks.

Examples of automated workflows include sending follow-up emails, scheduling phone screens, and recording interview notes. These advances have been made possible thanks to recent breakthroughs in artificial intelligence and machine learning, but not every ATS platform has implemented these advanced capabilities with the same success.

If your current ATS doesn’t allow users to automate repetitive, manual tasks, it’s time to consider switching to a different platform that will take some of this work off of the hiring team’s shoulders.

An ATS that integrates with other business software means recruiting teams can streamline their processes and access information about job openings and candidates without having to work out of multiple tools. For example, an ATS that integrates with HRIS software allows the hiring manager to import information about the new hire directly into the employee database.

If a different system has recently been upgraded or new software gets added to your company’s tech stack, your ATS might run into compatibility issues. In turn, this can create roadblocks for teams that are used to working seamlessly between platforms, or it can limit the scalability of your team’s processes. The only real way to get around this is to look for a new ATS that will integrate with the other tools your team uses.

In these cases, it’s worth seeking an ATS solution that is already integrated with other human resources (HR) tools in a comprehensive suite.

What to look for in a replacement ATS

If you’ve determined that your ATS needs an upgrade, we recommend including these five key features on the checklist for your next platform.

The right ATS software will offer all of the metrics you need to assess candidate data and determine whether your recruiting processes are working. An ATS dashboard should also be easy to read and customize as necessary, so you can easily access the information you need and make decisions quickly.

For example, PCRecruiter’s job board analytics feature connects the ATS data with Google Analytics to help recruiters track candidate sources, conversions, and falloff rates.

The PCRecruiter platform shows a line graph tracking applications by source.
PCRecruiter helps hiring teams see where applicants are coming from at a glance, so they can determine where to focus their efforts. Source: PCRecruiter

Proper application management is essential to finding the most qualified candidates and filling job openings efficiently.

Within the ATS platform, hiring teams should be able to sort applications in the ATS database according to specific criteria, like certain education requirements, work experience, or relevant keywords. They should also be able to search for applicants by name to locate the right information.

Some platforms like Pinpoint offer candidate profiles that help recruiters keep all of the information for a candidate in one place. This includes their application, résumé, pipeline stage, ratings, and conversation history.

Pinpoint candidate profile showing a candidate's picture and areas to add the candidate's résumé, application, scorecard, internal messages, and other documents.
Pinpoint helps recruiters quickly find candidate information instead of sifting through numerous applicant records. Source: Pinpoint

It’s not enough to be able to manage application materials smoothly: You also need to be able to move candidates through the job search and interview process quickly and efficiently.

A good ATS should make it easy to schedule interviews via phone, video, and in person. It should also automate interview reminders and scheduling, so you don’t have to.

Alternatively, some ATS platforms like Breezy HR allow candidates to schedule their own interviews from an outward-facing portal. The software synchronizes with the Google or Outlook calendars for everyone on the hiring team, so their interview availability is always up-to-date.

The Breezy platform shows the candidate selecting the date and then the time for their job interview.
Breezy HR lets candidates select their own interview times, which simplifies the interview scheduling process and helps move candidates through the hiring pipeline faster. Source: Breezy HR

Automation is another must-have feature. Your next ATS should automate repetitive tasks to eliminate redundancies and allow your recruitment team to focus on more valuable tasks, like sourcing and evaluating candidates.

Some advanced automations can also help keep candidates moving through the hiring pipeline. For example, Zoho Recruit offers a drag-and-drop interface for creating custom workflows depending on specific conditions or actions. This helps ensure no candidate slips through the cracks because someone forgot to follow up.

The Zoho Recruit platform illustrates a trigger and action workflow, with a user adding additional steps for the platform to take after a candidate is evaluated by a hiring manager.
Hiring teams can use Zoho Recruit’s workflow automation tools to optimize the hiring process according to the type of candidate in the pipeline. Source: Zoho Recruit

If your team relies on multiple platforms to maintain recruiting efficiency, then integrations can make or break your ATS. At a minimum, your new system should integrate with your current HR software stack; however, it might also be valuable to consider your team’s long-term goals and what integrations might be useful in the future.

Also, double-check to see if the integrations are built-in or if your recruiting team will need to create them using a third-party tool like Zapier. If it’s the latter case, be prepared for the extra time and resources it will take to manually configure and maintain these integrations.

A robust platform like Greenhouse offers hundreds of native integrations to support current and future needs without needing to leverage any additional tools.

Is It time to upgrade?

In some cases, your current applicant tracking system isn’t quite adequate, but you can’t replace it wholesale due to budgetary or IT reasons. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to make the most of your existing ATS without breaking the bank or overwhelming your IT team.

One option is to seek out training resources offered by your current ATS provider to make sure you fully understand the tool and are taking advantage of any recent updates or feature additions. Most cloud-based ATS vendors release updates regularly — sometimes monthly or even weekly — so you might have missed out on some helpful features that recently launched.

Configuring new integrations is also a fantastic way to supercharge the functionality of your current ATS without having to completely replace it. Some key integrations to consider are job boards, HR tools, social media platforms, email, and your content management system (CMS). Check out our roundup of must-have integrations for your ATS if you need some inspiration for how to boost your existing ATS.

What is the business impact of ATS software?

The recruitment process can be challenging for hiring teams and job seekers alike. Manual applicant screening delays hiring procedures, increasing cost-to-hire and prolonging time-to-hire. Additionally, manual online job postings can prompt tons of applications from under-qualified job seekers.

The best applicant tracking systems automate and streamline the hiring process from source to hire. It amplifies the capabilities of recruiters, hiring managers, and HR teams with a range of features to boost efficiency while attracting and retaining top talent.

First and foremost, ATS can screen job applications, scan résumés for the right qualifications, and select the qualified candidates to consider for an interview. This can lighten the load for hiring teams and cut down a significant amount of time.

On top of that, ATS platforms can assist recruiters in tracking interview processes, evaluating, making offers to, hiring, and ultimately onboarding new talent. The software promotes a smooth hiring process, enhancing the candidate experience and encouraging more skilled talent to join the organization.

ATS solutions allow organizations to recruit the best people, which is essential to any company’s success.

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