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Application Tracking Software

7 Things to Consider When Selecting an ATS for Your Staffing Agency

| By Bobby Bartlett

Choosing an applicant tracking system (ATS) for your staffing agency is an important decision to make. An ATS is the backbone of your entire recruiting process; it could be the single most important technology investment you make as an organization.

Because of the ATS’s importance, you can’t afford to rush that decision. Choosing a solution that isn’t a good fit for your team could set you back months as you reevaluate and go through the evaluation process again.

Taking too long to make a decision isn’t optimal, either. The longer the process goes on without a decision, the more likely you’ll never actually arrive at a decision and simply decide to do things the way you’ve been doing them up until that point.

So how do you meet in the middle? What are the best practices for selecting an ATS for your staffing agency? Let’s look at 7 things you should consider as you begin your ATS evaluation process:

Check Your Bias

This isn’t the time to play favorites. When you’re choosing an ATS, it’s important that you put any personal feelings or previous experience aside. Even if you’ve used a particular solution before with another organization, the solution you’re favoring might not be the right fit for your current company. Even if you know that solution inside and out, it might not be compatible with the way your organization and your team works. Functionality and adoptability should be the key contributing factors to your decision — not how much you like it.

If you go into the evaluation process with a clear favorite, you may — either subconsciously or intentionally — try to steer others involved in the decision-making process toward your favored candidate. You’ll exaggerate the flaws you find in other solutions while completely ignoring the potential issues within the platform you want.

Remember, what’s best for you isn’t always what’s best for your organization. Look at each potential software solution with fresh eyes and an open mind.

Fight the Urge to Overanalyze

Sometimes, the weight of a decision — or the fear of making the wrong one — will stop the decision-making process in its tracks.

Think of it this way: Your kids ask you to pick up a box of cereal on your way home. You stop by the grocery store, walk to the cereal aisle, and you’re hit with the sudden realization that sometime between your childhood and theirs, 300 extra varieties of cereal were created, and it’s up to you to pick the right one. Do you panic? Do you run screaming from the store? Do you stand there in the aisle for thirty minutes looking at ingredient lists and cartoon mascots? Picking one ATS from all the options out there isn’t all that different. (Though we do think it would be easier if cartoon mascots were involved.)

Most people don’t realize that a software company’s biggest competitor isn’t another software company. When renowned business research organization Forrester surveyed the internet technology industry, they discovered that nearly half of all lost sales opportunities were lost due to “no decision.”  The company in question simply chose not to choose anything and remained with the status quo. It’s daunting to think that no matter how much your solution may revolutionize a business, the act of making a decision and implementing some level of change might just be too much. For those companies, it would be easier to simply do things the way they’ve always done them, even if the way they’ve always done things doesn’t really work.

The enemy of progress is not regression — it’s stagnation. Don’t let yourself be overwhelmed by information overload or an intimidating number of options. Remember that there was a reason you started shopping for other options. Don’t go back to the status quo just because the decision grew more difficult than you expected.

(Read about the other 5 things to consider when selecting an ATS for your staffing agency by downloading our eBook!)

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