It is easy to think that an ATS is only beneficial for large companies, or for companies who have a high turnover rate. The former have the most funds to pay for software, and the latter get the biggest benefit from an ATS since they are hiring so frequently. However, this is not necessarily the case.
While it is true that 98% of fortune 500 companies utilize an ATS, a small business has much to gain from using an ATS as well. In fact, small businesses may stand to gain more from an ATS than larger organizations do.
Let’s take a look at some characteristics that would make a small business a good fit for an ATS.
Competition for Talent and Customers
First and foremost, a company that is growing is often best suited for an ATS. This year, 55% of HR managers at small businesses are hiring for new permanent positions. This puts the majority of small businesses in a position where they need to find readily available, quality candidates quickly.
These small businesses are competing with each other to hire the best talent for their new positions, but many are also competing for customers. Each day that a business delays in hiring, is time taken away from growing and achieving the next competitive advantage in the market. This can negatively affect year-end sales and revenue reports.
By utilizing an ATS, small businesses can greatly increase the efficiency and quality of hiring, and more importantly, find the talent they need to achieve a competitive advantage and put themselves in a winning position.
Small Business ATS Vs. Recruiters
Secondly, small businesses that rely on external recruiters to find mid to low level candidates are often a good fit for investing in an ATS.
While external recruiters have their place in the hiring world, they may be best saved for high-level, very hard to fill roles that are tough to recruit for–not always the case for a small business. So if a small business finds itself going to a favorite recruiting team every time there is a need to hire for a new position or to fill a vacant one, it might be time to look into an ATS instead.
By utilizing an ATS, employers can set up their own customized hiring process that removes much of the manual processes and time often associated with hiring. An ATS will deliver an easy-to-use hiring pipeline that delivers candidates just as good, if not better than, those received from an external recruiter. This saves a small business from spending big bucks on low and mid-level positions, which impacts expense reports and overall profits.
Small Businesses Hiring Slowly
Thirdly, if a small business’s hiring process takes weeks, or even months to produce new hires, then an ATS can help speed things up.
The hallmark of an ATS is its efficiency and time-saving capabilities.
In fact, you would be hard pressed to find an ATS vendor that doesn’t advertise “efficiency” as a primary benefit. These ATS vendors promote efficiency as a benefit because:
1.) it is the overwhelming consensus from thousands of companies that use an ATS, and
2.) ATS vendors know that small businesses are still spending large amounts of time and money hiring new people–and their ATS could drastically reduce that spend through the efficiencies it brings.
If a hiring manager finds themselves or their small business posting a job ad, then waiting weeks to find applicants that suit their needs…then spending even more time to contact and schedule rounds of interviews, hoping to find the diamond in the rough–then they should consider investing in an ATS.
Good applicant tracking software will automatically post job ads to multiple job boards at once. This alone will save many hours of logging into separate job sites, posting jobs, reviewing applicants, and moving applicant data into another system…or worse a spreadsheet for job applicants!
Beyond job ad posting, an ATS excels in helping employers manage applicants through the hiring process. For example, the ability to filter applicants by qualifications helps quickly identify the best job candidates that can then be moved onto the next stage of the hiring process. And when it’s time to communicate next steps to an applicant, an ATS provides candidate message templates for common tasks like scheduling an interview
All in all, an ATS can make the hiring process up to 52% faster, while also freeing up HR professionals who will spend up to 67% less time recruiting! Results will of course vary from company to company, but one thing is guaranteed, when using an ATS employers will see a time reduction in their hiring process.
Candidate Job Fit
Lastly, if a small business is receiving plenty of applications, but it is still struggling to find the right candidates, then an ATS might be the solution.
One of the biggest headaches for hiring managers is seeing an influx of applications, only to spend hours going through them and seeing few qualified candidates. Precious recruiting time is lost to ten’s or even hundreds of irrelevant resumes. An ATS can help clear up this issue in two key ways.
First, an ATS allows for custom screening questions on the job application. These questions could address relevant work experience, a degree in a certain field, certifications needed for the position, or maybe just skills determined critical for the role. Employers can add screening questions in the early stages of the application to sift out unwanted candidates.
Secondly, an ATS organizes job applicant data which hiring managers can review and filter. This allows employers to quickly and easily disqualify groups of applicants they deem unfit for a position. A hiring team can then narrow its focus on candidates that are the cream of the crop.
With just these two examples, small businesses can save hours and hours of busy work, end up with better candidate job fit, and develop a happier hiring team.
Bottom Line: Small Businesses Can Benefit from an ATS
As you can see, small businesses face many challenges that can be overcome with the use of an ATS. This is by no means an exhaustive list, and and there are a litany of other issues that an ATS can resolve.
If you’re curious whether an ATS can solve your specific hiring challenges, schedule a quick call with us here at ExactHire to get an expert opinion!