HR technology brings new ways to interpret data on job applicants.

Your recruitment and hiring process should generate the best candidates for your business. Without a quality applicant tracking system, the HR department will waste too much time on manual tasks and lack the resources to effectively screen for good long-term fits. Here are the primary factors to consider when you're evaluating applicant tracking solutions.

on-premise or cloud-based

An on-premise system puts your company in full control of the software and hardware required to run the applicant tracking system. You need more IT resources for this configuration, but retain complete control over the data. A cloud-based system lowers your overall expenses due to the vendor's ownership over the equipment necessary for the application and streamlines the deployment process.

candidate tracking

Can the system follow the candidate's progress from the first interaction with your company to the end of the hiring cycle? The HR department needs full visibility into the recruitment pipeline.

candidate communication

Talented candidates can fall through the cracks if important messages get siloed in a hiring manager's inbox. The applicant tracking system should offer a unified communication platform that references all emails, messages, phone calls and in-person meetings for easy reference. Automated reminders help busy HR personnel stay on track with appointments and follow-ups.

designed for your business or industry

A common applicant tracking solution mismatch occurs when you look at vendors unfamiliar with your company size or industry. Industry-specific applications provide value-added features for your specific recruitment needs, while vendors with clients approximately the same size as you offer the proper support.

good user experience

Frustrating applications turn off HR professionals and applicants alike. Look for a system with a good front and back-end user experience. Commonly used functions should be intuitive and the workflow capable of supporting your current processes. Spend some time testing the system from both user types to get a feel for its overall ease of use.


New hire onboarding should get the employee off to a good start. The applicant tracking system can facilitate access to internal systems, send over the appropriate training material, book time with a trainer and perform other functions. This feature frees up HR's time with a standardized and consistent process.

The right applicant tracking system saves your HR department significant time and resources and improves the process of finding quality candidates. Use this list of criteria the next time you're evaluating a new system, so you get exactly what your business needs.