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How to Transition to Your Ideal Applicant Tracking System


Another sweeping introduction about how 2020 changed recruitment processes and procedures forever is unnecessary.

Recruitment professionals are already more than aware of this fact. Because, you’ve lived through it. You’re still living through it.

But, what have you learned from it? What have these months highlighted about the performance of your current system. Specifically, if you’re using an alternative to an Applicant Tracking System.

An alternative, for example, like an outdated HR payroll system. One that primarily comprises payroll and employee management functionalities relating to existing personnel. But it isn’t focused on pre-hire recruitment functionalities. 

Or, you might be using an older system that’s referred to in the business as a ‘legacy system’. A so-called legacy system does what it was built for at the time it was built. But that was a number of years ago. Now, in 2021, it’s proved to be incapable of evolving with your business needs in times of flux.

You’ve forged your way through the crisis situation since March 2020. But, it needn’t be something you can look back on and say you survived, by the skin of your teeth.

On the contrary, it’s a golden opportunity to analyse your Applicant Tracking System needs with a longer-term mindset.

So that when your business encounters new disruptors in the future, you have an Applicant Tracking System that empowers you to adapt, and thrive, to suit the changing environment.


What problems does your ideal Applicant Tracking System need to solve?

In order to envisage your ideal Applicant Tracking System, you need to identify and itemise the key problems you need it to resolve.

It’s far from a negative exercise though, Because an Applicant Tracking System has the solutions to all of these problems. Problems commonly experienced by recruitment professionals in the same situation as you, caused by –

  • Deployment of technology. Laptops and software used remotely, by team members working from home, can cause tech issues your current system isn’t built to deal with. This isn’t the case with a future-proofed Applicant Tracking System. Which can even be used on a mobile phone, if your team members are on the move or don’t have immediate access to a computer.
  • Disparate, unintegrated transmission of key documents. Going backwards and forwards with crucial documents like contracts and right to work can slow down the onboarding of successful candidates. It can also potentially cause compliance issues. These hindrances and threats are removed by simple Applicant Tracking System integration. 
  • Disengagement of successful candidates. It’s not good for your business operations, or your employer branding, if successful candidates aren’t communicated with satisfactorily during the onboarding process. An impeccable Applicant Tracking System can help prevent miscommunication. Or no communication at all. From the moment your successful candidates accept a job offer. Through to their first day in post. Their induction. Their training programme during their first weeks of employment at your business.
  • Diversity and inclusion strategy jeopardised. Lack of alignment across the recruitment process is successfully alleviated by an Applicant Tracking System that supports your strategy. And alerts you to any potential causes for concern.
  • Job application volume. The need for unprecedented mass communication levels can be completely unmanageable if your system is incapable of assisting you. Whereas a quality Applicant Tracking System can take care of mass communications for you. At every touchpoint throughout the recruitment process that requires communication with candidates.
  • Hindered, juddery processes. You coped with imperfect and outdated processes before recruitment went completely remote. Since then, the shift has served to highlight the inadequacy of your system, in the current situation, and moving forwards. An elite Applicant Tracking System does much more than look after the here and now. It’s already informing and influencing the future of the recruitment process.


What does your ideal Applicant Tracking System look like?

It’s important to carefully consider the negatives. But, it’s a much more positive experience to re-imagine your recruitment process when the obstacles are removed by your ideal Applicant Tracking System.  

Even moreso when the solutions to the problems, caused by your ineffective system, go hand in hand with numerous additional benefits. You might never have even considered some of them.

Benefits that can be completely customised to align with your recruitment goals. Your HR goals. And, your overall business goals.

The re-imagined Applicant Tracking System of your dreams may include some, or all, of the following features as minimum –  

  • Branding and personalisation of email and SMS communications with candidates across every touchpoint. Your employer branding boosted, thanks to your superior candidate communication. (FREE WITH VACANCY FILLER).
  • Carrying out fully integrated candidate testing mechanisms. Helping avert unconscious bias during candidate shortlisting.
  • Configuring and integrating with HR payroll, and also with your careers site (if you have one).
  • Enabling blind shortlisting of candidates in support of your diversity and inclusion strategy.
  • Enhancing new starter induction digitally. Maintaining all-important engagement with intrepid successful candidates you can’ meet up with in person.
  • Facilitating in-built video screening for streamlined remote recruitment (free with Vacancy Filler).
  • Onboarding successful candidates digitally, by integrating DBS, reference, and right to work features.
  • Processing of meaningful job board analytics, speeding up time to hire by targeting the most successful job boards per individual vacancy.
  • Production of actionable recruitment reporting that helps support goals, and inform strategy.
  • Facilitating in-built video screening for streamlined remote recruitment (free with Vacancy Filler).


Overcoming Objections: Why the Time to Transition to Your Ideal Applicant Tracking System is NOW!

An Applicant Tracking System is game-changing to any HR recruitment team. Yet, there are naturally many factors your business to take in to consideration when you’re considering transitioning from your current system.

Factors like the time it takes. The potential disruption to the HR recruitment team using it. And, also to the business in general, whilst HR, recruitment, and payroll functions are temporarily halted to facilitate the transition, training, and snagging.

The cost factor is key. There has to be a justifiable return on investment beyond dissatisfaction with the outdated system you’ve currently got.   

So, let’s address a few typical objections that may arise –


Business Disruption 

It’s only natural that key stakeholders may assume the implementation of a new Applicant Tracking System will disrupt your entire HR. The good news is that the impact is actually minimal.

You can rely on your dedicated Vacancy Filler Account Manager, and the entire Support Team, to remain by your side. During the transition. And at all times.   

Integration with your current HR Payroll functionalities eliminates the need for any complicated CSV imports and manual interventions. Resulting in all your data being pulled together, in one place that’s easily accessible for all relevant team members.



Investment in an Applicant Tracking System will of course come under scrutiny. However, investment in a premium Applicant Tracking System is justifiable for the money it saves inside and outside the business. 

There are savings to be made on job ad and agency costs, due to the ability of an Applicant Tracking System to drill down in to analytics more deeply that you may have experienced to date. These analytics provide metrics about your best performing recruitment channels. So, you can target your spend more strategically.

There’s less time wasted by the recruitment team on superfluous manual admin and duplicated tasks.

In addition, an Applicant Tracking System helps mitigate potential loss of bottom line profits due to positions remaining unfulfilled for an unnecessarily length of time. Caused by delays across the recruitment process as a direct result of an outdated system holding things up.



Time IS money. Therefore, the time saving benefits of a leading Applicant Tracking System cross over with the money saving benefits.

Outdated processes that cause the recruitment process to continuously stop again, then start again, are automated.

Wasted admin time by recruitment team members is replaced by optimal productivity.

The time to recruit is vastly reduced. Besides saving time, this also averts candidate disengagement. Even a potential loss of the best talent from the process, due to elongated periods of ‘radio silence’ while the recruitment wheels turn slowly in the background.



How many times have we all sympathised with people we know, about the shoddy way they’ve been ‘ghosted’ by recruitment professionals, in agencies and in-house?  

This highlights another key benefit that shouldn’t be overlooked. Your employer branding.

A harmonised Applicant Tracking System can help you gain ground on your competitors. By leveraging your ability to deal with volume candidates more positively than they’re able to.


It’s during challenging times that many businesses and people achieve optimum growth. Forced to look inwards to see what can be improved.  

So, don’t be afraid to review your processes. This is the ideal time to plan for your future.

If you’re unsure how to assess and evaluate your Applicant Tracking System, we have a handy guide for you. And, if you would like to speak to someone, simply reach out to one of our Vacancy Filler experts for a chat.

Book a demo

Jack Hardy

Digital Marketing Consultant for Vacancy Filler.

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