These days talent attraction (TA) departments are investing more and more in great technology. Rightfully so, TA teams around the world are hoping for an optimized process that builds team capacity and removes bottlenecks.
But is a shiny new applicant tracking system (ATS) the answer to all our problems in TA?
Sadly, the answer is no.
I love a great ATS just as much as the next person, but what some fail to realize is that when organizations are upgrading their technology, they are actually hoping for a more holistic TA transformation. They want to find talent more easily and then have that same talent navigate seamlessly through the recruitment funnel.
When the only change an organization makes is upgrading their technology, they are simply traveling down the same road with a new car. It may be a souped-up luxury car with low profile tires and matte rims à la Kardashians, but the road is the same and so is talent.
Here are 4 ways to get the most out of an ATS implementation by thinking holistically about your TA practice:
1. GPS is required!
Before reengineering a process or a function, it is important to understand where you are going as an organization. Some vital questions to ask are:
- What is the strategic roadmap?
- Which critical talent populations will you need to attract to help you achieve your objectives?
- Who is thriving in your organization?
- What are the attraction and retention drivers associated with these thriving talent populations?
- What does the candidate experience look like today?
Establishing your employee value proposition (EVP) is a fundamental component to a sound people practice. Once you understand your “why,” you will be able to build an employer brand and employee/candidate experience that supports your business goals.
2. Rev that engine!
Now that you know where you are going and who you are as an employer, it’s time to amplify the key messages in your story via your employer brand.
Employer branding helps create a pull strategy where every brand interaction impacts some level in the recruitment funnel. This is where you will be able to find new roads for talent, as you are not simply focused on lower funnel activities such as applications. There will certainly be application wins, but imagine your efforts leaving an imprint with those who are not yet in active candidate status. When the time is right for them, you have already built the know, like and trust via your employer branding efforts thus increasing the likelihood that they come to you versus the constant chase.
3. Create new roads and modes of transportation
Now that you know where your company is going, who you need to help get you there, and what you represent as an employer, why not use this period of change as an agent for more progressive channels? Sharing employer branding messages comes in many forms including creating meaningful content. By using more progressive and precise digital marketing practices, you can boost content to help create a healthy pipeline of both passive as well as active talent.
In addition to job postings, consider lead magnets such as relevant industry webinars, whitepapers, swipe files, etc. These can help build talent communities that you can nurture and then convert into applicants in your ATS.
4. Show off your new ride
You are not just selecting an ATS vendor at random. You now have the information needed to select a vendor who aligns with your overall experience strategy.
This is where the candidate experience really matters. Create a VIP experience in and out of the system that will help your organization attract the desired critical talent populations. Keep the application process simple and mobile friendly for candidate ease. Train hiring leaders on the TA vision, EVP, and the new system.
You have now arrived in style. Congratulations! By taking the time to understand the bigger picture and invest in your overall TA strategy, you can now arrive at your destination with a clear EVP, compelling employer brand, and optimized TA process including your HOT new ATS!
This is how a company realizes their secret yearning for a total TA transformation at the time of upgrading their ATS. #winning