Lose the Paper: 5 Reasons to Use an Applicant Tracking Software System

An applicant tracking system can transform your recruiting process. If you’re still managing your hiring process with printed resumes, email trails, and shared spreadsheets, you’re missing out on some of the major advantages of the latest human resources technological developments. From more efficient candidate screening and sourcing to more robust data reporting, here’s a closer look at five reasons you should start using an applicant tracking system today.

Better Candidate Experience
Many candidates expect to have the ability to review job postings online, learn more about your company, and submit their resume and cover letter via your website. Companies that aren’t offering these capabilities may be damaging their brands, especially if they’re recruiting technical talent, millennials, or executives who rely on multiple devices while on the go. An applicant tracking system enables you to have a professional, streamlined resume submission process that offers a positive candidate experience, while also making it easier to process resumes on the backend.

The Ability to Pre-Screen Candidates
Depending on what job you’re recruiting for, you may receive dozens or even hundreds of applicants. Reading and vetting every cover letter, resume, and portfolio to develop a pool of qualified candidates can be a daunting task. An applicant tracking system offers companies the opportunity to use pre-screening questions. For example, are you hiring for a job that requires a specific skill set? With pre-screening questions, you can identify which candidates meet the most important qualifications and narrow down the applications automatically.

Eased Workload for HR Staff
Many HR teams are leaner than ever before. Often fewer staff are managing a wider range of responsibilities. It’s important to have the right tools in place to allow your HR staff and recruiters to focus on their most vital tasks, whether that is recruiting star performers to your team, or building positive employee relations. Human resources is an administratively intensive field. Applicant tracking systems may save you time and money by eliminating duplicative administrative work.

Streamlined Review Process
When all the information about a candidate is available in a single interface, it’s easier for HR managers, recruiters, and hiring managers to review candidate submissions. Applicant tracking systems typically display details, such as interview notes from staff or system updates keeping track of where a candidate is in the interview process. Tracking systems also enable you to automate and track correspondence, ranging from resume acknowledgments to rejection letters.

Integrate Background Checks with Recruiting Information
Many companies are increasingly relying on outside services to help them make good hires. Examples of these services include detailed background screens, credit checks, skills assessments testing, reference verification, and drug testing. Applicant tracking systems offer the capacity to integrate these services and the results. The ability to integrate all this information allows companies to access the candidate data in one location, and may allow for a simpler onboarding process.

Candidate First Impression

As recruiters, the first impression of a candidate is often limited to the information in the applicant tracking system. Some candidates take their time and enter as many details as possible, while others breeze through providing just the absolute minimum. Others pepper their responses with so many throwaway phrases that nothing stands out. For example, how many times have you read “proven track record” or “implemented changes?”

To help applicants create a better first impression, applicant tracking systems, like myStaffingPro, are now offering video cover letters. Video cover letters allow candidates to submit a recorded letter of introduction. Through video, they can explain how they learned about the position and what their “proven track record” really is. This functionality allows candidates to create a personalized message that provides an overview of their skills and the opportunity to use their presentation to create a lasting impression.

myStaffingPro offers this functionality free to all of our standard and premium customers. For more information about video cover letters, please contact us.

5 Reasons You Need Video Cover Letters

How many times have you read “extensive experience” or “great communication skills” on a resume? Then, brought the candidate in for an interview to find out the opposite was true. So much wasted time! So many unexpected surprises!

The good news is that new applicant tracking functionality may allow you to minimize surprises with a video cover letter. During the online application process, companies can now ask candidates to submit a video about how they heard about the position and their qualifications. The video may allow candidates to:

  • Become more personable
  • Show their creativity
  • Build rapport by highlighting their experience
  • Reduce data entry (and saves you from reading their stock cover letter)
  • Develop trust

Do you allow candidates to submit video cover letters? With myStaffingPro, you could. myStaffingPro offers this functionality free to all of our standard and premium customers. For more information about video cover letters, please contact us at http://lp.mystaffingpro.com/coverletter/

 

Applicant Tracking System for Microsoft Dynamics

Although ERP systems are typically used for financial and inventory functions, Microsoft Dynamics® has HR functionality that can be integrated with applicant tracking systems. Applicant tracking systems can provide recruiters and HR professionals with:

  • Paperless application and new hire process
  • Prequalified applicant pool
  • Historical data and up-to-date analytics
  • Integration that transfers applicant and requisition data

Human resources can integrate an applicant tracking system to Microsoft Dynamics to better streamline business processes, minimalize data entry, and maintain accurate and current information.

“A great deal of time has been saved by not having to manually enter all applicant info into Microsoft Dynamics Great Plains (GP), which used to take as much as four hours to complete daily.” – Recruiter, Health Care Company

Interested in learning more? Stop by booth #659 at Microsoft Convergence to learn how to extend your HR functionality with the ISV, myStaffingPro, or visit http://mystaffingpro.com.

Improving the Recruitment Process: A Look at Agile Hiring

A new trend, agile hiring, is changing the way that businesses think about the recruiting process. The “Agile philosophy” has its roots in the software development world, and has subsequently been introduced to a wider business audience with the popularity of the recently published book The Lean Startup. Overall, the approach focuses on defining essential high-value activities, eliminating administrate work, using well-defined targets and making data driven decisions. The goal is to eliminate waste and increase effectiveness. Here is a closer look at the concept of agile hiring and how to apply it to your business.

Defining recruiting process benchmarks

One of the essential elements of implementing agile hiring is shifting your perspective to recruiting as a quantitative process. The ability to take the 30,000 foot view of your recruiting process and determine what’s successful and what’s not is key to this hiring philosophy. Recruiting has a wide variety of metrics that can be considered: the number of applicants a job receives, how effective your screening process is by reducing the number of interviews with unqualified applicants, and the number of days it takes to fill an open position. By determining what your core measurements of success are, you’ll be on the way to eliminating inefficiencies and operating a lean, effective recruiting organization.

Establishing clear job targets

Agile hiring takes a distinct approach to drafting job descriptions. Job descriptions are more than just a list of general roles and responsibilities. Instead, they provide a data-driven map to help recruiters identify and hire the best candidates for the job. The right job description will contain everything from quantifiable requirements such as minimum education and years of experience to a very specific list of qualifications that can sharpen the effectiveness of your screening process. Clear job targets benefit everyone throughout the recruiting process, from HR staff that wants to increase their effectiveness in screening applicants to candidates that have a clear understanding of a position’s criteria for success when considering a job offer.

Choosing the right technological support

The right applicant tracking software is essential to implementing agile hiring techniques. Look for a system that’s highly customizable to your company’s process and can evolve over time as you migrate toward better recruiting approaches. For example, select a system that allows you to establish screening questions and only pass qualified applicants through to the next stage. Functionality like this can eliminate the administrative burdens that can pile up during the recruiting process and allow your recruiting staff to focus on high-value activities. The best systems allow your HR team to quickly access information about the recruiting process, to automate some important screening processes, and get great candidates into interview more quickly. Systems should also offer the capabilities to track specific performance metrics and monitor improvements or other changes over time.

Is your company ready to streamline its recruiting process by implementing agile hiring? Contact myStaffingPro today to learn more about applicant tracking software to arrange a personalized software demonstration.

New Year, New Minimum Wages

Are you ready for the New Year? Effective January 1, 2015, the minimum wage rate will increase for the following states:

State Minimum Wage Rate
Alaska $8.75
Arizona $8.05
Arkansas $7.50
Colorado $8.23
Connecticut $9.15
Florida $8.05
Hawaii $7.75
Maryland $8.00
Massachusetts $9.00
Missouri $7.65*
Montana $8.05
Nebraska $8.00
New Jersey $8.38
New York $8.75
(effective 12/31/14)
Ohio $8.10**
Oregon $9.25
Rhode Island $9.00
South Dakota $8.50
Vermont $9.15
Washington $9.47
West Virginia $8.00

Some counties and cities may require a higher minimum wage.

In addition to updating payroll, updates should be made where impacted by the new minimum wage rate. Changes may be needed to your applicant tracking system to reflect new wage scales. For information about applicant tracking systems, please contact myStaffingPro at 800-939-2462.

* For businesses with annual gross sales of at least $500,000.

** For employees at businesses with annual gross receipts of more than $297,000 per year

Choosing an Applicant Tracking System: A Guide for HR Managers and Business Owners

Summary: An applicant tracking system is a smart investment for your HR team. Here’s a closer look at how applicant systems help you streamline your recruiting process, hire better talent, and reduce turnover through quality controls.

HR managers and business owners are always looking for ways to improve the efficiency of human resources departments. Your HR team’s work is essential – from managing payroll to recruiting your company’s next generation of talent. Yet many of the processes that they oversee are administratively intensive. The right technology tools can increase their ability to focus on high-impact projects, reduce hiring costs, decrease turnover, and improve your overall workforce quality. Here’s a closer look at applicant tracking systems, the features to look for, and how to choose the right software for you

Efficient, paperless recruiting process: The right applicant tracking system will help you implement an efficient, paperless recruiting process. Whether you’re recruiting for hard to find candidates or posting essential jobs that need to be filled quickly, an applicant tracking system lets you manage the hiring process from start to finish. The system will guide you through scoping out a job’s requirements, setting up a careers site to process applications, screening candidates, and managing the interview process. With the ability to oversee promotion, reporting, and candidate communications from a single interface, your HR team gets more done in less time.

Improved candidate experience: Hiring and retaining the best people starts with a smooth interview process. In-demand executives, developers, and sales talent often have multiple offers when they’re on the job market. The professionalism, speed, and overall candidate experience that’s driving your hiring process speaks volumes to potential employees. An applicant tracking system allows candidates to apply easily for jobs, monitor their application status, and receive timely communications. Your team is able to quickly vet candidates, arrange interviews, and manage both internal and external communications with ease. As a result, quality candidates have a positive experience and you’re more likely to make a successful hire.  New employees start their jobs in a positive frame of mind, based on a smooth and professional introduction to the company’s performance and practices.

Integrated processing: Today’s hiring process has multiple steps, from posting and promoting openings to processing candidates through the onboarding process. Once you’ve made a successful hire, new employees need to submit substantial amounts of paperwork in the form of employment agreements, tax information, and benefits applications. An applicant tracking system will ensure that you are able to track where people are in the process at all times. The system can also be configured to manage elements of employment screening such as background checks, verifying employment and educational histories, checking references, and even processing drug testing. Ensuring that each new hire has met your company’s standards reduces turnover, ensures a higher level of performance, and mitigates the financial and legal risks of making a bad hire.

An applicant tracking system is a smart investment in today’s hiring environment. From reducing the workload of overtaxed HR teams to providing high-value candidates with the best experience possible, automating your recruiting process has numerous benefits for your business. Are you an HR manager or business owner who wants to improve your firm’s recruitment strategies? Contact us today to learn more about our comprehensive applicant tracking system and suite of integrated services.

 

Does your Recruiting Process Resemble a Kid’s Game?

Sometimes recruiting can feel like an endless game of Marco Polo, where you are blindly posting job openings and hoping that someone will respond. Being in the dark about your recruiting effectiveness can leave you disoriented and disillusioned. Thankfully, there are tools to help.

With myStaffingPro applicant tracking system, you can track your recruiting initiatives and pinpoint the best sources. Instead of relying on candidates to select the correct source, we appended the apply link from job boards with tracking tags. In turn, the candidate’s sourcing information is automatically populated with the correct value. The result is accurate information about the reach of the job board posting and its results. Using the sourcing reports, you can then identify which job boards are referring qualified candidates and how many are hired. With myStaffingPro, you can analyze your recruiting spend against the source information of your hired applicants to maximize your expenditure.

Interested in learning more? Visit http://myStaffingPro.com.

Is Your Recruiting In A Hopeless Place?

Sometimes pop songs can remind you of a moment. A moment in time, an experience, a milestone, a job. The Rihanna hit “We Found Love” brought me back to my recruiting days at the temporary staffing desk. A typical week would involve interviewing and hiring thirty plus candidates, placing twenty of them, following up on the hundred placed else ware, and terminating a handful. Through the experience, I learned how to handle employees spitting on managers, sleeping in closets, failing drug tests, and stealing. Then, there was the paperwork! I would go through a ream of paper a week. From paper employment applications, WOTC forms, Forms I-9, W-4s, as well as testing and payroll; it never ended. Not to mention the countless hours I spent manually entering applicants into an HRIS (even though it wasn’t tied to payroll).

Thankfully, in the last ten years technological advancements have reduced the administrative burden and reams of paper. Applications can now be accepted online via an applicant tracking system that is also integrated with a payroll and HRIS system. With the right software, recruiters can now find love in a once hopeless place.

 

Looking for an applicant tracking system?  myStaffingPro provides an online requisition approval, application, and workflow processes.  For more information, please visit http://myStaffingPro.com.

5 Reasons Employee Assessment Should be Part of the Hiring Process

Fortune 100 companies and small businesses alike are leveraging the benefits of employee assessment companies to help them hire the right employees. The financial impact of a bad hire can have dire consequences for your business. According to the US Department of Labor, replacing a bad hire can cost 30% of the first year’s potential earnings. The Recruiting Times has estimated that it can cost as much as $7,000 to replace a salaried individual contributor and as much as $40,000 to replace a senior executive. With these figures in mind, it’s easy to see why integrating employee assessment tools with your recruiting software is a critical step in your recruiting process. Here’s a closer look at five specific benefits that these tools can add to your hiring process.

Help eliminate hires based on false information

As a recruiter, you’re relying in large part on a prospective employee’s resume to give you insights into their experience, education, and expertise. Each of these areas is important to determining both their ability to do the job you’re hiring for, as well as their long-term viability as an employee. The statistics on job seekers fabricating information about their experience are staggering.

The Society for Human Research Management has estimated that as many as 53% of applications contain false information. Pre-screening adds another layer of protection, in addition to interviews and reference checks, to help you weed out non-qualified candidates.

Reduce the potential financial impact of a bad hire

As discussed above, a bad hire can cost your company thousands of dollars to replace. There are also additional impacts that are harder to quantify, from damaged employee morale due to perceived turnover to managing workflow and customer relationships. Another potential risk is a company potentially facing a negligent hire suit. A negligent hiring claim arises when a poor hiring decision leads to harm to a customer, co-worker, or other individual.

As a result, the company can face a lawsuit and then it is incumbent upon the employer to prove all steps were taken to properly vet and screen the employee. An article in Fortune Magazine suggests that employers have lost as many as 79% of negligent hiring suits, and judgments average in the range of $1 million per lawsuit. Proper pre-screening helps prevent these issues from arising, and provides a solid precedent that the company follows rigorous hiring procedures in the instance that a suit did arise.

Improve hire quality and cultural fit

The standard employee assessment can focus on a wide range of issues, from determining specific experiences to understanding more about a candidate’s psychological profile and work style. Each of these areas is important to finding the right candidate. By determining what information you need prior to selecting candidates for interviews, an integrated employee assessment program can help you identify highly qualified candidate pools.

Employee assessments are also exceptionally useful for gathering data about qualities and traits that are harder to uncover through resume review and early conversions. These factors can include work style compatibility, general approach to problem solving, and overall cultural fit with your organization. Employee assessment tools offer an objective measure of these issues to help inform your hiring decisions and clarify areas that should be probed more deeply during one-on-one interviews and during the reference check process. Since these areas can be as vital as experience and education to a new hire’s long-term success at a company, their importance shouldn’t be overlooked.

Employee assessments help companies mitigate risk, while recruiting more effective. By integrating your employee assessments with your online recruiting software, it’s easy to manage your workload, provide a good experience for candidates, and get fast and accurate results.