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In any field, managing a perpetual flow of job applications is one of the top concerns that recruiters and talent acquisition professionals face. From keeping track of all applicants to filtering out the right candidates, managing and communicating with candidates can be an arduous task.

An inefficient recruitment process can make your company lose out on fresh and competent talent too. According to G2, about 60% of applicants are likely to reject a job offer because of an unpleasant Candidate Experience. Manual handling not only delays the recruitment process but also significantly impacts Candidate Experience in general.

What To Look For In a Modern Applicant Tracking System (ATS)?

Recruitment is the art of identifying and hiring the best candidates for specific roles in your organization. Capterra reports that over 75% of large companies have implemented an application tracking system. A survey also found 80% of employers reporting that the number one impediment they faced in hiring top talent is the influx of irrelevant or junk resumes that they claim applicant tracking systems have helped alleviate.

Using one of the best applicant tracking systems (ATS), you can streamline your hiring process and ensure that candidates have the best experience while applying to your organization. Here are some of the features you should be looking for while choosing an applicant tracking system for your firm.

Workflow Configurability

Recruitment processes are like snowflakes: they have common features, but they're simultaneously unique. The idea of an applicant tracking system is to aid your existing talent acquisition process without being rigid and forcing you to work according to the way it’s built. You should be able to configure elements of your workflow easily without much hassle. Stay clear of applicant tracking software that forces you to adapt to the way it’s built.

Talent Pipelines

A good applicant tracking system should help you look for talent from your organization’s talent database that includes the data of all applicants who might have shown interest in working for you in a prior engagement. It should also be possible to find internal employees interested in migrating to a new role. Being able to assign the best talent to roles they are most suited for allows your organization to achieve efficiency at scale.

Applicant User Experience

For many applicants today, a modern, cutting edge, yet user-friendly career portal speaks volumes about the company they’re considering working for. Implementing a good applicant tracking system shows applicants that you care about them and demonstrates that your organization cares about hiring the best talent. One of the primary goals of a robust applicant tracking system is to provide applicants with the best possible experience throughout the recruitment process that your organization follows.

What Are The Best Applicant Tracking Systems Out There?

Here's a quick rundown of some of the best applicant tracking solutions you can choose for your organization.


Greenhouse is one of the most popular applicant tracking solutions out there. It offers a complete, comprehensive package that lets you design your process according to your needs, gives you the opportunity to create custom hiring plans for each role, and even personalize details to adapt to your hiring team’s necessities. Customization is an already great reason for you to consider Greenhouse for your organization, but there’s more to it – Greenhouse is trusted by pioneers such as AirBnB and Time Inc., both powerful organizations employing some of the best minds in their respective industries.
Greenhouse is great for scale-ups that are hiring a lot but don't have too many employees yet, as their pricing is based on the number of employees.


Lever is another very popular option when it comes to the best applicant tracking systems. One of its key selling points is that it offers a hybrid solution addressing the need for both an ATS and a CRM, allowing recruiters from organizations of all sizes to scale their hiring requirements without facing bottlenecks caused by systems that are incompatible with each other. Lever allows organizations to use a single user-friendly interface that is customizable throughout and allows for external and internal talent hunts, as well as the ability to nurture existing teams and allow them to be more efficient.
Lever is an excellent choice for high-growth scale-ups or for medium to large businesses.


SmartRecruiters is a great option that is popular among many recruiters and talent acquisition teams because it automates the recruitment process from start to finish. SmartRecruiters has the user experience at its heart and pledges to make for a better user experience for both applicants and recruiters alike. Using features like the evaluation and assessment tools built into the system, you can be sure of a competitive edge over other companies.  
This ATS is ideal for medium to large organizations.


Recruitee is yet another excellent ATS. The collaborative hiring platform combines employer branding, job promoting, talent sourcing, and applicant tracking.
It's ideal for small or medium businesses with fast-paced growth. This tool has the advantage of not being limited to your classic ATS features - in fact, it also lets you use a variety of job boards, pick from a rich gallery of job description templates, or source through their very own Chrome extension.


BambooHR stands out as one of the best cloud platforms that equip talent acquisition with everything they need to automate their processes and be more efficient and effective in hiring the best talent. Features like e-signatures, performance management, convenient reporting, and other powerful onboarding tools tick all the right boxes, making BambooHR one of the best applicant tracking systems to choose from.

The Importance of Having an Open Environment and Great Integration

Every organization is unique in many ways, with each having its nuances. However, with every organization striving towards achieving peak efficiency with recruitment and talent acquisition, the process used by each of them is largely the same. But there may be certain steps in the process that might differ based on factors specific to the role or industry.

The best applicant tracking software allows you to automate every aspect of your recruitment process, thereby avoiding the bottlenecks caused by the lack of support for customizability.

At Starred, we integrate with Greenhouse, for which we're a customer-preferred partner, as well as with Workday, Lever, SmartRecruiters, Workable, and Recruitee.

Ensure the applicant tracking solutions that you’re considering have an open environment that allows you to configure each element at the most basic level without needing approval from the vendor. Ensure that the solution you choose allows for integration with other software that your organization might use, such as CRMs. The lack of compatibility will cause issues and reduce the impact applicant tracking systems can give you in terms of efficiency and the competitive advantage of hiring the best talent.

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