Three Applicant Tracking System Must Haves

by Ryan Kohler

Because ApplicantPro is a hiring software that I designed and I’ve been in the business for over seven years, I consider myself to be fairly knowledgeable about the subject – the benefits, the challenges, and everything in between. In my experience, what typically hinders a company from utilizing an Applicant Tracking System is one: they don’t understand what it does/what it is and we all know that if you don’t understand something, then you won’t know the potential it has to transform your hiring process from chaotic to seamless overnight. And two: they don’t recognize the differences between each system and what features would be most beneficial to their unique organization.

So, if I’ve built a company around an online hiring tool then it only makes sense for me to spend the next few paragraphs convincing you that my software is the best and has everything you need and so much more, right? Not exactly. I’m the first to admit that not all applicant tracking software is created equal; which, to be honest, is great news for you because not all organizations are created equal either. Each has its own individual needs based on the type of hiring environment it supplies and fortunately, there’s probably a system out there for everything you can imagine. The key is to find something designed to support your process.

If I were to create a list of three pre-requisites for an Applicant Tracking System, this is where I’d start:

  1. Ease of Use - I can’t stress this enough. Chances are, if you have a system that isn’t user-friendly, no one will use it. Or, you’ll waste a significant amount of time trying to familiarize yourself with it defeating the whole purpose of enlisting the help of an automated method in the first place. Now, don’t misunderstand me, some of this responsibility falls on you as the HR Professional. ApplicantPro provides training for its clients in the beginning phases and also regularly throughout the month; take advantage of these types of opportunities. The small time investment of an hour here and there will reap exponential rewards. Promise.It’s also important that the portal is convenient on the applicant side as well. After all, one of your primary goals here is to manage your applicant pool more efficiently and broaden you candidate reach; so, it only makes sense that it be painless on both ends. Hopefully, you’ll get a walk-through of the system in what we call a “demo.” I always ensure that my potential clients feel comfortable both as an HR Representative, and from the job seeker’s perspective.
  2. Try Before You Buy - This is HUGE. There are a few systems out there that have a free-trial option. We give you 30 days here to test-drive our platform before you actually pay for using it. This is a great way to determine if the Applicant Tracking System is right for you as well as giving you a good idea of how your interaction with the company will be on the support side. If you ask questions and they’re answered promptly in the initial trial (free) period, you can bet that your concerns will be addressed in a timely manner when you become a paying customer.
  3. Fully Customizable - This might not seem like that big of a deal in your Applicant Tracking System quest, but trust me, it’s a big one. You want a system that has the capacity to be as feature-rich or simplistic as possible without compromising the integrity of the software. ApplicantPro’s system is designed specifically for small to mid-sized companies, so there’s quite a bit of flexibility there to suit the needs of various clients. We have the ability to integrate with pretty much every feature you can imagine while also offering a “lite” version for less money. If you’re hiring five employees a year, you don’t want a system that’s going to cost you the same as a company who hires 200 employees a year because that doesn’t make sense. Your needs are going to be different than the needs of a much larger company. BUT, in the event your company explodes and in the course of three years, you manage to move from hiring five employees to 200 employees, you’re going to want the flexibility of a system that evolves with you. You might also want a company that doesn’t require you to sign a contract for a specific period of time in case your hiring needs change.

What I’ve outlined for you above is a great starting point to choosing the right hiring software for you. If I’ve piqued your interest about what we offer, feel free to contact our support team today. And most importantly, don’t fear change, embrace it because in my opinion, you have nothing to lose testing a hiring process free for 30 days.


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