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5 Best Recruiting Software Add-ons For Your ATS

Shaun Ricci

August 10, 2017

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Industry predictions that single-vendor HRM systems were going to be the norm have failed to materialize.

As Lever’s Leela Srinivasan notes, “No one player is best-of-breed at everything” and this has created an ATS tech space that’s much more integrative.

Today, it’s much more common for recruiting teams to have an applicant tracking system as their base software and then choosing add-ons from a marketplace of complementary recruiting tools.

As the ATS is gradually becoming an end-to-end attraction and acquisition platform, there are multiple tech stacks needed in talent acquisition.

software add-ons for your ATSBy Tim Sackett’s count, there are 22 different tech verticals including CRMs, interviewing tools, candidate communication tools, and sourcing tools.

In the current transition between an old-school ATS and an ATS that can incorporate all those verticals under one platform, the central concept is integration: can tool X integrate with your pre-existing system?

If it can’t, or can’t in a fluid way, you’re going to run into lots of problems trying to “square peg/round hole” a situation.

This will drive up recruiter frustration, as well as lack of adoption, as you try to make two solutions work with each other.

When ATS partner integrations work, you have end-to-end recruitment management that allows a recruiting team to be both innovative and cost-effective.

Here’s a list of the 5 best recruiting software add-ons for your ATS to increase its functionality.

1. AI for screening

This might be one of the most important ATS add-ons, because volume is a huge concern for talent management professionals.

52% of talent acquisition leaders say the hardest part of recruitment is screening candidates from a large talent pool.

This increasingly becomes a problem because talent pools are getting larger: an average job opening these days receives 250+ applications and up to 88% of those received are unqualified.

That can translate to 23 real-time human hours screening for a single job.

The ATS on its face was supposed to solve some of these issues via knockout questions or keyword analysis of resumes.

However, an ATS on its own has some built-in flaws. Resumes that keyword-stuff can be screened in as a false positive, and ideal candidates can be screened out because they don’t meet the keyword minimums.

An AI for screening add-on can solve some of these issues:

  1. You’re now automating an administrative, repetitive task that recruiters tend to find tedious anyway.
  2. Because AI software learns with experience, it can begin with historical hiring decisions and job descriptions and evolve to rank new candidates based on the success of previous hires (as measured by performance, turnover, or managerial satisfaction).
  3. AI programs can handle large amounts of data — far more than humans can. That makes it ideal for high volume recruitment contexts such as retail.
  4. Because the system learns as it goes, it has the potential to quickly increase quality of hire.

2. Scheduling automation

People often get a little confused about this, but scheduling automation generally doesn’t involve AI at all: it’s simply an automated process for connecting candidates and recruiters with times to speak or meet.

This eliminates the 10+ email back-and-forth discussions that can become draining for both sides.

Most applicant tracking systems will offer some type of scheduling function internally, and there are other tools on the market you can research.

Make sure it integrates with your base ATS, and make sure it’s actually automated. Aside from making their calendar available, the amount of work on the recruiters’ side should be non-existent.

3. Talent rediscovery

Talent rediscovery is the ability to automatically screen candidates who applied for a previous role at your company and then match them to a current open requisition using your ATS resume database.

Think of it like this: have you ever applied for a job, been rejected, and gotten an email about how the company will “keep your resume on file?

For most people, they assume they’ll never hear from that company again.

The reason this happens (and candidates become frustrated) is because an average ATS wasn’t designed to allow recruiters to easily find and grade previous applicants for a new open requisition.

This happens even if those applicants were screened and matched to a similar role previously.

Talent rediscovery software uses AI to search through your ATS database to find, grade, and rank prior applicants that match the qualifications of your open role.

Using talent rediscovery can be cost-effective as well. If you run screens before publicly posting, you may consistently be able to fill from your pre-existing candidate base.

4. Mobile functionality

Most applicant tracking systems these days are being designed or redesigned as mobile-first, but make sure your program is mobile-first.

Candidates are increasingly applying via mobile and recruiters want to access the ATS from their phones while on the go.

If the mobile functionality also contains options for social recruitment (easy screening of social profiles) or texting candidates (often the preferred communication channel, especially for younger candidates), these are value-adds to your recruiting process.

5. Video interviewing

Rather than live video interviews — which can be a pain to schedule and make the candidates nervous — companies are increasingly turning to “one-way interviews,” where the candidate records answers to a set of questions.

This allows you to review when you have down time, or all the interviews at once on a specific day, as opposed to rushing from live interview to live interview.

Companies like Spark Hire provide this now. In the future, video interviewing may become a focal point of the ATS.

Summary: 5 best software add-ons for your ATS

An ATS is a good baseline, but they’re just that: a baseline.

While all have their advantages, no single best-of-breed exists. As such, talent acquisition professionals need to embrace the integrative marketplace.

Technology is changing recruiting very fast and both artificial intelligence and automation are making it easier to improve areas of recruiting with specific inputs and outputs.

Whatever base ATS you use, consider the following integrative software add-ons to save yourself time and money:

  1. AI for screening
  2. Scheduling automation
  3. Talent rediscovery
  4. Mobile functionality
  5. Video interviewing