Has this ever happened to you? You purchase a new phone and you learn quickly how to use the features of the phone that matter most to you. Months go by. Then one day you discover some totally marvelous feature your phone has that you didn’t even realize, and you mentally kick yourself for not figuring it out sooner. Suddenly, you are just as excited about your new phone as you were when you first got it.

As it turns out, your applicant tracking system can be a lot like that. When you made the investment to purchase the system, you learned all the things about it you needed to know at the time. But in many cases, you may discover that there are features you have not used to the fullest extent.

So, how can you maximize the value of your applicant tracking system and be certain you are leveraging all its features in the best way? Here are some tips to help:

1) Pick the right ATS from the get-go.

This may sound like a no-brainer, but choosing the right system will help you reap huge rewards later. Specifically, you should look for an intuitive system with easy-to-use features. SHRM’s “How to Choose a Next-Generation Applicant Tracking System” notes that a good applicant tracking system should be customizable to your unique workflows and hiring needs.

If you want to really maximize the value of your ATS, it has to have functionality that integrates with the way your recruiters, hiring managers, and C-suite execs work. If your ATS has a user interface that is easy to navigate and functionality that makes sense in the eco-system you have created, you are on the right track.

2) Provide learning opportunities for all users.

In the mad dash of ATS implementation, you may be tempted to train essential users only on the features of the system which they will use every day. That is a good start, but you can do better. To get the most from you ATS, it is best to provide regular, consistent training that encompasses all the functionality of the system.

In some cases, you may find that a little-used feature is exactly the thing needed to eliminate a bottleneck in your hiring or onboarding process. When all users of the system cross-train for all functionality, your team learns quickly how the ATS is truly designed to work.

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3) Encourage consistent use of your ATS.

Your ATS is only as good as the information you put into it. For this reason, you must encourage users to use the system at every opportunity. For instance, consider the collaboration tools available. If three out of five of the people involved in your talent management strategies are using the collaboration tools and the other two are not, you will have a significant gap in the data you need.

Similarly, if you are not using the communication tools available such as automated email responses and status updates for active candidates, you are missing out on a significant advantage provided by your ATS in terms of improving the candidate experience. Making it a priority for all users to be consistent in the ways they use the ATS will help you get the most from the system.

The Bottom Line

Understanding and mastering the use of all the features of your applicant tracking system will ensure that you maximize its value and reap a positive ROI. Emphasis should be placed on continuing training and consistent use of the system for all parties involved. This is made easier by choosing an ATS with easy-to-use features, such as ThriveTRM. Want to see how easily it works and integrates with your workflows and processes? Schedule a demo today.