April 6, 2021

AI-Powered Software Unlocks the Potential of Candidates in Applicant Tracking Systems

Applicant tracking systems (ATS) have become essential in human resources tech stacks. Companies have been able to build more efficient and effective talent acquisition processes by capitalizing on the capabilities of these systems.

But ATS tools fall short in some areas. There are gaps in their capabilities that leave holes in a company’s tech stack.

That’s where AI-powered software comes in. AI-powered technology enhances the capabilities of ATS systems such as Workday, so companies can build more complete tech stacks that meet their HR needs.

AI Identifies Quality Candidates With Improved Searches

One of the limitations of an ATS is its focus on simple keyword searches when screening candidates.

These systems are usually designed to allow HR to set minimum thresholds via simple keyword searches for certain qualifications such as skills, education, and experience. But they may overlook the most qualified candidates who didn’t use those particular keywords in their applications or resumes.

AI-based software is built to overcome this shortcoming by analyzing multiple data points to find the best candidates for a position. The algorithms in these tools are capable of seeing the bigger picture and seeking out applicants with the potential to succeed in a role, including candidates who previously applied for other positions but may be better qualified for a different one.

The end result of using AI-powered tools is far higher-quality results than seen with simple keyword searches.

AI Performs Those Targeted Searches More Quickly

Another limitation of an ATS is the speed with which it searches through applicants to pinpoint to most qualified candidates for a position.

An ATS certainly sifts through high volumes of applications faster than a human can. But when taking into consideration the number of applicants it overlooks because of the limitations of keyword searches, is it really returning the best results at that quicker speed? HR would likely pull a higher number of qualified candidates through manual screening.

An AI-powered tool is capable of both: sorting through hundreds and even thousands of resumes more quickly while finding the most qualified candidates. That’s exactly what happened at AirAsia, allowing the company to process as many as 132,000 applications in one month, cutting back on the time recruiters spent on pre-screening applicants by 60 percent.

three office workers, two shake hands; concept: ai complements ats to find great hires

AI Helps Build Better Candidate Experiences

Creating positive candidate experiences during the recruiting process is important for organizations competing for top talent. A bad candidate experience can be damaging to a company’s reputation and deter high-quality candidates from applying for jobs.

Communication and transparency are key to those experiences, but ATS tools aren’t designed with those candidate-facing aspects of the process in mind. AI-powered tools help create personalized career sites and let hiring companies roll out chatbots — both big steps toward a better candidate experience.

According to the Human Capital Institute, the most common contributor to a bad candidate experience is the lack of response from employers, with 75 percent of applicants saying they never receive status updates on their applications. More often than not, HR is simply too busy to get back to everyone who applied for a job.

Personalized career sites help by encouraging candidates to apply for the right jobs. Such sites allow candidates to upload their resumes, match their skills and experience to relevant jobs, and apply only to those for which they are most qualified. This boosts the candidate experience because they aren’t wasting their time applying for the wrong jobs for which they may never hear any feedback.

Chatbots improve the candidate experience by enabling candidates to get answers to some of the most commonly asked questions, which is one of the key reasons so many HR departments are employing this technology, notes Helen Poitevin, VP Analyst, HCM technologies, at Gartner.

Convenience is a positive factor for candidates too. Chatbots are available 24 hours a day, so anytime they want to follow up or ask questions, they can do so without having to worry about office hours or leaving a message and waiting for a response from someone in HR.

While applicant tracking systems are an essential element in any company’s HR tech stack, they aren’t an all-encompassing tech tool. Adding AI-powered software fills the capabilities gaps in ATS tools so that HR stacks are more comprehensive and, therefore, effective for meeting organizational talent-acquisition needs.

Images by: dolgachov/©123RF.com, mangostar/©123RF.com