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Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

Best Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

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Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) Overview

What is an Applicant Tracking System?

An Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is a type of software used to manage recruiting operations. It is generally available as a cloud or web-based service. The hub of the software is a database of candidates. Connected to the hub are job listings on job boards and the company website, which feed candidates’ applications into the hub. Recruiters can post and manage job listings from within the hub. Recruiters can also communicate with candidates from within the hub via email or social networks like LinkedIn.

However, since it’s associated with old-school passive recruitment methods, the term ATS has fallen out of favor somewhat. Many modern vendors now refer to their solutions as recruiting software rather than applicant tracking systems, to indicate a broader feature set and a more active approach to recruiting.

Recruiting software allows recruiters to better manage the recruitment process, from recruitment marketing to job applications and hiring. It typically has three major functions:

  1. Facilitating sourcing of job candidates
  2. Collecting and managing resumes
  3. Managing interaction with job candidates

Today, ‘ATS’ may refer to the whole recruiting platform, or just the piece that stores submitted applications.

Resume Parsing Software

Resume Parsing is a specific activity that falls under the umbrella of application tracking and recruiting operations. Tools designed for resume parsing automate the process of gathering, analyzing and storing resume data.

Generally, there are three types of resume parsing tools:

  • Keyword-based: These tools apply algorithms to the text around keywords, phrases, and simple patterns.

  • Grammar-based: These tools apply grammatical rules to decipher the meaning of each sentence in a resume.

  • Statistical: These tools apply numerical models of text to find structure in a resume.


Some vendors offer recruitment software or ATS suites that include some resume parsing or functionality. However, there are a few resume parsing point solutions available as well.


These include:

Applicant Tracking System Features & Capabilities

ATS and recruiting platforms assist with each stage of finding and hiring new employees. Basic ATS platforms aggregate and manage resumes. More advanced recruiting tools may include additional features, such as:

  • Integrated background checks

  • Experience/education verification

  • Candidate screening tools

  • Video interview capabilities

  • Integration with onboarding/talent management software

  • EOE compliance checking


Today, it’s typical for recruiting software to include features around:

  • Job requisition management

  • Company website posting

  • Social media publishing

  • Job search site posting

  • Customizable applications forms

  • Resume management

  • Duplicate candidate prevention

  • Candidate search

  • Applicant tracking

  • Collaboration

  • Task creation and delegation

  • Email templates for communication with candidates

  • User permissions

  • Notifications and alerts (particularly for interviews

  • Standard reports on key recruiting metrics

Recruiting is a core component of talent management. All the platforms listed in our Buyer’s Guide to Talent Management Software offer recruiting capabilities as part of a broader suite that includes onboarding, performance management, compensation, learning, etc.

Recruitment Management

This is the core functionality that allows users to manage the recruitment process. Common capabilities include:

  • Email and resume parsing

  • Scheduling and calendars

  • Analytics and reporting (to assess which approaches work)

  • Mobile accessibility/mobile apps

  • Referral programs

  • CRM-type features for keeping tabs on passive job candidates


For a higher price, recruiting software vendors can accommodate larger companies’ needs. This includes:

  • More simultaneous users of the system

  • More active job postings

  • More automation

  • More customer support and implementation help

  • Other advanced features

Advanced Analytics & Big Data Insights

Measuring the recruiting process can provide a significant competitive advantage. The hiring success rate is dependent on understanding:

  • Best combinations of experience and education

  • Which sourcing channels provide stellar candidates

  • What kind of approach creates engagement


Recruitment data vendors provide the big data mining solutions to understand these factors. Broadbean and BurningGlass both offer advanced recruiting analytics, for example. HCM and talent management suite vendors also offer more advanced analytics that can tie in later-stage information about employees, such as retention, performance, compensation, etc. to guide recruiting efforts.

ATS vs. Active Recruitment

Taking a customer relationship management approach to recruiting changes the paradigm of hiring. It holds that candidates should be treated much the same way as customers. It’s the job of recruiters to actively market to prospective employees, to get them interested and make sure they have a smooth experience with the company.

Most traditional applicant tracking systems (ATS) simplify the hiring process for the employer. At the same time, some make it more difficult for the applicant. This is where the candidate experience and engagement strategies of modern recruiting software come in. Presenting an attractive brand and proactively reaching out to candidates to build a relationship with them (rather than just waiting for them to apply) helps attract the best talent.

This is a slightly different approach to hiring. Tools designed for an active recruitment strategy focus on searching for and communicating with candidates who might not have applied yet, or even be actively seeking a new job yet. Software solutions like SmashFly act as a kind of recruiting CRM platform, to store candidates’ contact information and a history of past communications. LinkedIn Talent is another major player in this arena. The site can be mined for passive candidates who fit recruitment qualifications, using advanced search criteria. Other sites that recruiters can use to find candidates are Facebook, Twitter, StackOvervflow, Quora, etc. Some vendors specialize in aggregating this information to make it easily searchable, including:

Pricing Information

Pricing for ATS and recruitment software varies depending on the focus of the vendor and the size of the company/candidate pool. Specific pricing is available by a custom quote from most vendors. Costs can range from thousands of dollars per year to hundreds of thousands of dollars per year, depending on the number of features, integrations, recruiting users, and applicants you need in the system.

Applicant Tracking Products

Listings (51-75 of 183)

Hireology

5 Ratings

Hireology is a recruiting software solution offered by Hireology.

Accurate Background

3 Ratings

Accurate Background pairs advanced background screening technology with quality information and services. The vendor aims to provide companies with the ability to make intelligent and compliant hiring decisions.

Lanteria HR

2 Ratings

Lanteria HR is a SharePoint solution for Human Resources and Talent Management. This solution facilitates and automates the entire HR management cycle in a company. It allows for a central storage of all HR information and guides and supports various HRM processes. Talent Management Features O...

Montage

4 Ratings

Montage is an interviewing technology platform that offers live and on-demand functionality for video, voice, text and in-person interviewing. For use from sourcing through onboarding, the platform can support all types of interviews for all job types. It is mobile-friendly and includes self-sche...

GoHire

1 Ratings

Applicant Tracking System designed for use in the restaurant, retail, and hospitality industries

NEOGOV Insight

3 Ratings

Insight is an HR solution that automates the entire hiring and selection process from requisition to hire and is tailored for the unique needs of public sector organizations. Some key functions include position requisition approval, automatic minimum qualification screening, test statistics and a...

InterviewStream Hire

1 Ratings

InterviewStream Hire is a video recruiting solution. Some key features include: Pre-Recorded Video, Live Video with ZOOM, Fully Customized Experience and Share Videos.

Spark Hire

1 Ratings

Spark Hire is a video interviewing platform. Some key features include: One-Way Interview, Live Interview, Collaboration and Shared Interview.

GreenJobInterview

1 Ratings

GreenJobInterview is an applicant tracking and recruiting software solution, acquired by Montage in September 2017.

TargetRecruit

2 Ratings

TargetRecruit is a recruiting software solution offered by TargetRecruit.

ApplicantStack

4 Ratings

ApplicantStack is a recruiting software solution offered by ApplicantStack.

Appcast

1 Ratings

Appcast is a recruiting software solution offered by Appcast, Inc.

Avature CRM

2 Ratings

Avatar CRM is a candidate relationship management platform that enables businesses to build talent networks by sourcing and importing passive candidate profiles from job boards, databases and the web. Users can fulfill workforce objectives through engagement workflows and communication automation...

SimplyHired

6 Ratings

SimplyHired is a job search engine and recruiting software acquired by Indeed in 2016.

SkillSurvey Pre-Hire 360

3 Ratings

SkillSurvey in Wayne, Pennsylvania offers Pre-Hire 360, a reference check and pre-hire analysis platform, for recruiting.

Dice Open Web

11 Ratings

Dice Open Web is a recruiting solution that works by consolidating data on potential employees from 130 different sites.

Avature ATS

6 Ratings

Avature ATS is an applicant tracking and recruiting software solution offered by Avature.

TalentSorter

1 Ratings

TalentSorter pairs leading-edge psychometric science with an optional ATS, to screen an unlimited number of candidates at a flat monthly price. The vendor says that because the assessment is part of the application process, every candidate appears in the user’s dashboard with a FitScore beside th...

Smashfly

2 Ratings

Smashfly is a recruiting solution built around features such as search engine optimization to attract more candidates, engagement tools such as career sites and referrals, and lead nurturing features such as customer relationship management (CRM) and email marketing.

Luceo

28 Ratings

Luceo was originally Profilsoft, a French company, but was bought by Careerbuilder and rebranded Luceo, and is now featured at over 400 companies worldwide. Luceo is available as a cloud-based standalone ATS or as a feature of the greater Careerbuilder1 suite. By itself Luceo indeed presents a fu...

SkyRecruit

1 Ratings

SkyRecruit is the suite of integrated recruitment tools that underlies all of Cielo, Inc.'s global recruitment process outsourcing services. It is designed to facilitate communication between recruiters, candidates, and hiring managers. The SkyRecruit technology platform is maintained by engineer...