Review: Using ATS Software to Improve the Candidate Experience

The way you present your company to job seekers can make a big impact on your business. According to CareerBuilder, a bad candidate experience can negatively impact a company’s ability to recruit quality hires, as well as its bottom line. To further explore this idea, Software Advice, a HR technology review company, surveyed job seekers and recruiters to see what makes a good hiring experience, and how and applicant tracking system (ATS) can impact this process. 

The main findings of this survey were as follows:

  1. Unclear application instructions are the primary cause of a bad candidate, cited by 93 percent of job seekers.
  2. Extremely long application forms are the second most common cause of a negative candidate experience, cited by 90 percent of job seekers. 
  3. More than one-third of job seekers say that more communication during the hiring process would improve their candidate experience. 
  4. 74 percent of job seekers say a clear timeline of the hiring process would improve their candidate experience.

So what does this mean for companies who are looking to expand? It means if you want to peak the interest of qualified applicants you better be clear, concise, and communicative. Lets dive a little deeper into the survey findings.

Provide Clear Instructions 

The job posting could very well be the first experience a candidate has with your brand. This makes it extremely important to make sure your job posting is done just right. According to the survey, applicants said the posting must include two things in order for their perception of the company to be positive: clear instructions, and an application of reasonable length. 

93 percent of respondents noted that unclear information on the application caused a negative impact on their experience with a company. If your company uses an ATS you can likely use an older posting (which should have job requirements stored). This saves time and reduces the chance for error, assuming you put time and effort into your first posting. 

Long applications are second on the list of things that can cause an applicant to have a negative experience with your brand. Part of this can be repetition; if you ask a candidate for their resume, do not then make the fill in the same information elsewhere. 

Learn to Communicate Better

34 percent of jobs seekers stated they would prefer more communication throughout the hiring process. Also, 28 percent of respondents did make a request for more communication; mainly a rejection email if they were not chosen for the job. Whether you are interested in the candidate or not, send them a note to express your interest or disinterest. This could save you from creating a negative experience, and even open the door for an application further down the line (hopefully for a more fitting role).

Having an ATS Can Create a Better Experience

Recruiters who used an ATS noted that they believe their candidates have a more positive experience because of the ATS. The biggest advantage for the hiring managers using an ATS was the ability to send automatic emails to keep candidates informed during each stage of the hiring process.

Providing a Timeline

74 percent of job seekers said that a timeline of the hiring process and the steps involved, along with clear communication, would significantly improve their candidate experience. It should be stated that recruiters who use an ATS, even while performing manual methods, are more able to provide a timeline to candidates than recruiters using non-ATS software, or nothing at all. 

The biggest advantage to an ATS for providing a timeline to candidates is the built-in workflows. These workflows allow recruiters to stay organized and see the steps involved from start to finish. 

In order to provide a positive candidate experience when posting a job it is important to be clear, concise, and communicative. Many recruiters find this process easier when they have access to an ATS. If your company is interested in learning more about applicant tracking you can learn more by clicking the button below. Want to read more of the survey? You can do so here.