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How to source talent better using an ATS

By | Apoorv Bhatnagar

One of the biggest struggles of a recruiter is to source talent quickly and effectively. The ATS has various functions that can serve as effective solutions to sourcing problems. It can help you source candidates in a faster and more efficient manner using integrations with job boards, creating attractive career sites, customised applications and create a candidate database. With so many mechanisms in place to help you source, the way you do it is extremely important. The efficiency of a software can be directly proportionate to how you put it to use, similarly ATS only becomes better when you make the most of it.

So here are some ways you can source talent better using an ATS:

Listen to your referrals:

When someone who knows you really well suggests something, there is a good chance that they are right. By the same logic, when you receive a referral for a job posting the possibility of that candidate being a great fit is high. A study by JobVite found that 46 percent of referred hires stuck around for at least one year after they were hired, which was far above the 33 percent of people hired through career sites and 22 percent hired through job boards. They are easier to hire, perform better and stay longer in the company. So keep a look out for these quality referrals because you never know when you will find a great match among them.

Create an employee referral program for your network of employees. This would mean to collaborate with employees with good networking ability and wide social circles in this program. The program should ideally include incentives for every participating employee to promote more participation. To make this process more effective you should regularly post job openings when you observe the network being most active. For example, if you observe a higher number of quality referrals on a Monday morning, make that your day for posting the opening. If you do not find a regular pattern that works for you, then each job posting will be lost among other things and the number of referrals may not be optimum. To avoid this, you can automate the job postings and that task will be taken care of for you by the ATS. This way the employees will know when to expect a job posting and be ready to refer the best candidates they know.

Tip: Even with an ATS, an employee referral program an additional boost is always helpful. You achieve this through gamification and incentivising this process by creating a leadership board and introducing reward points for top referrals.

Fish out of your talent pool:

The talent pool acts as a candidate database allowing you to archive great candidates who did not get the job they applied for or potential candidates who don’t have an appropriate job offer in your company yet. “Only 25% of the workforce is actively looking at any given time, but 85% is willing to talk.” said Eric Feng, Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Which means these passive candidates can be converted to active candidates with the right opportunity at hand. So when an opening comes up for a new job you can first check with this database and see if any of the candidates are suited to the job. This serves as a readymade list of many ideal quality candidates hand picked by you or your fellow employees. Which makes talent pool one of the most time and effort effective ways of talent sourcing.

To make the most of this feature of your ATS, you should regularly update the database. Being regular with your talent pool is extremely important because you may miss out on key candidates if you forget to archive their profiles. Another plus point about talent pools which makes it effective in sourcing is that you can even engage with these candidates in creative ways. Sending them content from your company’s blogs or adding them to events will keep candidate engagement on high from your end.

Sourcing through Social Media

Studies show that over 80% of organisations are using social media to recruit candidates. This method of talent sourcing has shown positive results with 71% of recruiters agreeing that it was effective in decreasing the time needed to fill non-management salaried positions. These channels also help you acquire a detailed perspective on your candidate which will help you hire better. In descending order the most preferred platforms are, LinkedIn (96%), Facebook (66%), Twitter (53%), based on a study conducted by Society for Human Resources in 2015.

With an ATS you can post your job openings to various social media websites and get the attention of job seekers. Your ATS makes this easier for you as you can do it from one software as opposed to signing in and out of multiple social media websites just to post regularly. To source better using social media and ATS, check in at the times when the platform is most active, you can identify this through activity insights. For example LinkedIn is most active in the middle of the week (Tuesday-Thursday) around 5-6pm for sourcing candidates, according to their data. You can also streamline your social media scanning to a minimum and choose the site which is most relevant and effective to you.

Candidate experience matters:

Just like how candidates must impress the employers to get the job they desire, you too must put up an impressive front to attract the right candidates. Creating an engaging career site with comprehensive information on the company and prompt communication will enhance the experience of a candidate and help you hire better. This will also help you with good referrals as the word spreads about the company’s hiring process and culture.

The career site acts as a front end which the candidate lands on before applying for a job. Therefore, any first hand impression the candidate gets will be from the site during the applying stages. This page makes it easier for candidates to engage directly with your company and job offers. The site acts as a good place for employee branding to be showcased along information pertaining to the hiring process at your company.

The ATS enables you to customise your career site as well as your hiring process. This enables you to acquire high quality candidates. Your front end is the career site which provides them with all the information, and the back end is the ATS allowing you to create custom application forms and tests for every job role. You can create your site in such a way that it sells the candidates on applying for a job, acquires their contact information for future purposes and engage more effectively with your company and jobs.

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