How Applicant Tracking Systems work

What are Applicant Tracking systems(ATS)?

ATSs are systems used by employers to track and manage applications to jobs. The ATSs ease the process of recruitment for employers.

What are the uses of Applicant Tracking Systems?

  1. Screen Candidates
  2. Test Applicants
  3. Schedule Interviews
  4. Track hiring
  5. Check References
  6. Manage Paperwork
  7. Regulatory Compliance

Who uses Applicant Tracking Systems?

ATSs are mostly used by around 90% large organizations. Many have a dedicated ATSs as well. ATSs are being adapted by small and medium sized organizations as well through open source and Software as a service(SaaS) offerings.

How Applicant Tracking Systems Work

As a part of the recruitment process, companies receive personal contact information, resumes and cover letters of the applicants. The first step of the process is the most crucial:

Screening of the resumes

Around 70% of the candidates get screened out at this stage even before a resume reaches human eyes. Hence, any resume which is not in a specific set of formats will be screened out as the machine cannot read it. Some of the more important factors for screening include

  1. Keywords(skills) related to the job
  2. Context of keyword occurrence
  3. Educational background

For a more detailed insight on science of resume screening, read this article.

Following the screening, at every stage of the hiring process (tests, interviews etc.) the ATSs forwards the candidates profile to the next stage and send automated mailers to the candidates regarding their selection or rejection.

While ATSs make it easy for the employer, it makes the job application process so much harder for the applicants.

To find out more on how to optimize your resume to beat the ATS, read this article.