Signs You Need to Optimize Your ATS

October 19, 2021

Anyone in Talent Acquisition knows that your Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is usually the first interaction your applicants/new hires will have with your organization. For that reason, it is the key to attracting top talent and supporting a successful and smooth hiring experience for your candidates. In addition, an ATS can make or break the hiring process for your Talent team by either driving efficiencies or bogging them down with unwanted work.

While no two Applicant Tracking Systems are created the same, there are a few clear indicators that it may be time for your organization to use a consulting firm like HRchitect to optimize your processes and ATS.

  • Increased application abandonment rates

Depending on your ATS, you may be able to run reports showing your abandonment rates and at which point in the application process candidates dropped. Current trends in recruiting center around quick, easy application processes, mobile optimization, and overall ease of use for the candidate. As other organizations change their processes and ATS configuration to support this trend, your organization may be left behind, and miss out on recruiting top talent. A long clunky application process is no longer effective in an environment where your competition is providing a much more streamlined, engaging and even enjoyable application process.

  • Manual workarounds to your business process

Chances are your business processes have changed a little, or maybe even a lot, since your original ATS implementation. Our clients often do not have the people resources in-house to make the configuration adjustments that would make the system fit the current needs of the business. In other cases, the ATS does not allow for the level of self-service adjustment that an organization needs. When that is the case, we see recruiting teams skipping steps, explaining deviations in the form of comments, touching too many candidate records, etc. Not only does this damage the efficiency of the recruiting team (and most likely their morale as well), it also creates significant compliance issues when it comes time for things like Affirmative Action Reporting.

  • Your organization has grown

Organizational growth is a great thing! But it’s not always graceful if your technology cannot keep up. As your organization grows, so do your recruiting needs and processes. You may want to consider creating micro job sites to support multiple brands or divisions. You may wish to compartmentalize your data, candidates, or jobs based on user or business groups. Your current ATS may not support these kinds of growth, or you/your in-house team may not have the time to make these changes yourself.

  • Data degradation & loss of reporting

As you “live” in your ATS, your data will begin to degrade, as it does in any system. This could mean multiple records for the same candidate, inaccurate information or a build-up of old requisitions which have been sitting open for long periods of time, among other things. These items not only reduce efficiencies when working your hiring process, but they also can mean a degradation of reporting capabilities and accuracy. Not only will this wreak havoc on Key Performance Indicator (KPI) reporting, but more importantly can result in issues with compliance and even litigation.

There are many, many more signs you may need to optimize your ATS than are listed here. The bottom line is that if you are seeing a loss of efficiencies in your hiring process, a reduction in candidates (numbers and/or caliber) or have compliance/reporting issues, it is probably time to invite HRchitect in to explore these issues. We’ll make a plan for resolution, which typically includes an ATS optimization, and arranging help for your already busy HR team execute the recommendations that come out of your optimization. Remember, fixing ATS challenges usually results in a higher contribution to your organization’s bottom line which is a relatively easy business case to make if the need is there.

HRchitect has worked with many different sized clients, industries, and recruiting and talent management systems, which gives us an expansive knowledge of best practices to help your organization. Further,  if you have recently implemented an existing Human Capital Management (HCM) system, HRchitect can help you create a Change Management and Communication Strategy that will work for you to make sure your organization realizes all the benefits of your new tool or system. If you’d like to talk with a recruiting and talent management expert to see if it’s time to optimize your ATS, schedule a consultation with HRchitect.