Sourcing the right candidates for your vacant positions is no easy task. It’s a multi-step process that requires speed and efficiency to secure the best candidates before they lose interest and move on. An applicant tracking system can help by organizing and tracking the whole process.
There are many different applicant tracking systems (or ATS’s) to choose from. Yet, finding the right match can be challenging when you’re already managing a heavy workload. To save you time, I’ve created a top 10 list of the best applicant tracking systems for small businesses. Keep reading to learn how these systems can help you improve your recruitment process from end-to-end.
Collaborative candidate tracking tools within a core HR framework
What do I look for when selecting the best applicant tracking software for small businesses? Here’s a summary of my ATS evaluation criteria:
User Interface (UI): I appreciate software with a visually attractive, clean, and colourful user interface that is easy to navigate and not chaotic to use.
Usability: I prioritize software that is simple and straightforward to use, with bonus points given for automations and other time-saving features.
Integrations: I look for systems that integrate with other commonly used applications such as email programs, social networking sites and, of course, direct integrations with popular job posting sites.
Value for $: I prefer software with transparent pricing models and clear explanations for the features you will or won’t receive at each level. This is especially important for small businesses with tight budgets.
Applicant Tracking Systems For Small Businesses: Key Features
Some applicant tracking systems are standalone pieces of software, while others are distinct modules, embedded in larger human resources information systems (HRIS) or human resource management systems (HRMS). Regardless of how an ATS is packaged, these are the core features you can expect to find in the best applicant tracking systems:
Talent pools: The ability to build up a roster of potential candidates to draw from for future job openings.
Talent pipelines: These are visualization tools that allow recruiters to expertly track where each candidate is within the recruiting process. The best talent pipeline tools are organized visually with columns for each key step in the process (i.e., screening, interview, background check, references, offer, etc.) and have user-friendly features like drag-and-drop changes or one-click advancements.
Workflow automation: Recruiting can become tedious, so the best systems must include automations to take care of the menial tasks like sending out interview reminders or following up on incomplete references. Other helpful automation tools are features like sending out bulk yet customized rejection emails and auto-scheduling interviews.
Candidate screening tools: Built-in features like screening questionnaires, scorecards, skill assessments and ranking features help hiring teams quickly compare candidates before advancing them to the next stage.
Direct links with job posting sites: The exact number of sites will vary with each platform, but the best ATS tools automatically submit new postings to popular job boards as soon as they’re published.
Mobile app accessibility: This is important for both recruiters and candidates since more and more business is conducted on mobile devices these days. Using an ATS with a full-feature mobile app will increase the speed and ease of candidate responses, and allow recruiters to stay on top of updates no matter where they are.
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Overviews Of The 10 Best Applicant Tracking Systems For Small Businesses
Here’s a brief description of each applicant tracking system to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface.
Pinpoint helps teams improve diversity during the candidate selection process with their blind recruiting feature.
Pinpoint’s modern applicant tracking software has sophisticated features to help human resource departments reduce administrative tasks and focus more on finding qualified candidates for each job opening. HR teams can identify top talent using intelligent filtering, then add them to a shortlist and automatically schedule an interview. Their system is also great for small businesses as it cuts down on time spent advertising positions with its programmatic recruitment advertising and connections to 1,450+ job boards.
To help reduce bias and improve your DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) during the applicant screening process, Pinpoint has a very interesting blind screening feature that ensures initial assessments are focused exclusively on a potential candidate’s skills and experience. Their blind recruitment tool works by removing personal details such as candidate names, contact information, how they heard about the position, and other details that could contribute to unconscious biases. Those details are then replaced with combinations of neutral fruits and vegetables. This is done on a job-by-job basis for the candidate selection process. Once the top candidates have been scheduled for an interview, the data is no longer anonymized.
Pinpoint boasts integrations with 100+ common software applications including candidate skill assessment platforms like Bryq, Coderbyte, CodeSumbit, TestDome, as well as many common HRIS platforms, messaging tools, video interviewing platforms, and others.
Pricing for pinpoint starts at $600 USD/month. A free personalized demo can also be requested through their website.
Build a custom visual dashboard that captures all phases of your recruitment cycle, all in one place, with Monday.com’s workflow visualization platform.
Monday.com is an intuitive workflow visualization tool that can be used to set up visual boards for many purposes, including as an applicant tracking system. They have 200+ ready-made templates to get you started (including an applicant tracker template), and you can customize them with 30+ types of columns in a simple, drag-and-drop interface. Using their platform, hiring managers can capture candidate details using embedded forms that automatically update linked details in the visual board as soon as candidates submit them. For candidates who are eventually hired, you can also link your recruitment pipeline to a customized onboarding process for them too.
The versatility of this software makes it a great choice for small businesses. Once you’re hooked on your visualized applicant tracking system, you will likely discover other areas of your business where you could use this platform too. Their system makes it easy to create custom dashboards that capture a birds-eye-view of timelines, budgets and project progress at a glance.
Monday.com integrates with 30 commonly used software applications including Salesforce, Zendesk, Shopify, SurveyMonkey, Mailchimp, HubSpot, Adobe Creative Cloud, Eventbrite, Hootsuite, GitLab, GitHub, Basecamp, Asana and many others.
Pricing for Monday.com starts at $9 USD/seat/month, or they have a free forever plan with limited features for up to 2 users. A 14-day free trial and free demo are also available via their website.
Manatal’s platform creates a talent pipeline page for each vacant position, making it easy to track where candidates are in the hiring process.
Manatal’s applicant tracking system simplifies the hiring process, helping hiring teams of any size manage their talent pools and strengthen their team collaboration. Their system creates individual talent pipelines for each vacant position, making it easy to track and share progress with other hiring managers. To boost the number of candidate applications, Manatal feeds job postings to thousands of free and premium job posting boards following the parameters of your job ad campaigns.
Recruiters dealing with high-volume hiring will appreciate Manatal’s built-in artificial intelligence, which includes AI-driven recommendations for which candidates are the best fit based on extensive candidate scorecards and comparisons of their direct skills against your detailed job descriptions. Rich candidate profiles also capture a candidate’s entire digital presence including their LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts, all within their profile, making social media recruitment simple.
Manatal’s cloud-based SaaS software is fully accessible from their mobile app as well, making it easy to stay on top of activity when you’re away from your desk too. The system also includes integrations with LinkedIn, Gmail, Outlook, Mailchimp and other platforms. Access to their API and Zapier integration are available for customized system configurations too.
Pricing for Manatal starts at $15 USD/user/month. A free demo and a 14-day free trial can also be requested via their website.
Breezy makes team-based hiring easy with collaborative hiring tools like discussions, notes and candidate scorecards.
Breezy’s recruitment software covers the full recruitment process from advertising positions and attracting candidates, through screening and interviewing, all the way to sending out offers. Candidate management tools include drag-and-drop talent pipelines, email and SMS messaging, automated workflows to streamline repetitive tasks, and screening tools that automatically advance or disqualify candidates based on their answers.
Their system supports custom-branded career sites that are mobile-optimized, to make discovery easy for potential candidates. Once you publish a new job posting, Breezy will automatically distribute it to 50+ job sites all around the world, making exposure fast and simple. They’ll even help you improve your DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) stats by integrating with the best DEI-focused job boards for you. On top of that, they also have a process for capturing employee referrals, giving you another opportunity to find top talent that your existing staff can vouch for.
Breezy integrates with 35+ common software applications including background check software like Checkr, GoodHire, and Verified First, HRIS systems like Gusto, Hibob, Namely, Rippling, Sapling, and Zenefits, and many productivity tools like Slack, Zapier, Zoom and many others.
Pricing for Breezy HR starts at $143 USD/month but your first two months are free. A full-feature 14-day free trial and free demo are also available too. A freemium version for just one position or job pool is also available.
Tracker’s fully-ranked long lists of candidates generate automatically per job opening.
Tracker offers a wide range of useful functions in their ATS software which also doubles as a CRM (customer relationship management) system, making it a great choice for any organizations with a heavy customer relations focus. Within their ATS tool the list of features is deep, including resume parsing, robust candidate search tools, automated job board posts, candidate prospecting tools, interviewing tools including 1-way and 2-way video interviewing, a built-in team TrackerChat app, and a mobile app that includes 100% of their SaaS platform features.
Several unique features make this ATS software stand out. To save time, their skills profiling tool automatically categorizes candidate information as applications filter into the system, making it faster to find the best match. Their long & shortlisting feature also automatically compiles long lists of candidates for review by recruiters, with the ability to advance candidates to the shortlist with just one click. On top of that, Tracker’s platform includes an AI ranking tool that constantly learns from ongoing engagement with each individual candidate during their lifetime in the Tracker system, and applies this in tandem with their resume ranking tool.
Specific software integration details are not listed on their website, though their system does include native integrations with common job boards, social media platforms and communication tools.
Pricing for Tracker starts at $80 USD/user/month. A free trial and free demo can also be requested through their website.
Recruitee’s talent pipeline is clearly organized and digestible at a glance.
Recruitee’s ATS software supports the entire recruitment process, beginning with their CareersHub page, which can be customized to match your company brand with no coding skills or fancy IT requirements. You can create custom landing pages for different career campaigns and use their smart campaigns feature to post to multiple job boards at once. To help you source the most qualified candidates, the system is linked with 1,450+ free and paid job boards. They even have a ReferralsHub module to help you source talent through an employee referral program too.
Helpful, timesaving features for the screening and evaluation process include screening questionnaires, unbiased hiring evaluation tools, an event scheduler, automated candidate reminders, video interviewing integrations with Google Meet, Teams or Zoom, and meeting room booking tools. Hiring managers can send successful candidates job offers directly within the system, which also has a full-feature mobile app and e-signature capabilities. For remaining candidates who still show future potential, you can add them to a talent pool for future vacancies.
Recruitee has 60 integrations with common HR software platforms, including BambooHR, Checkr, DocuSign, Gusto, Outlook, Sympa and many others.
Pricing for Recruitee starts at $91 USD/month for 5 job postings per month. An 18-day free trial and free demo can also be arranged via their website.
To boost the candidate experience, JazzHR supports branded external communications including automated text messaging from within the system.
JazzHR was designed to help small and medium businesses (SMBs) speed up their candidate sourcing and screening processes. Their recruiting workflow includes end-to-end customizations so you can track how candidates progress and easily share reports with other team members or hiring managers. Repetitive tasks can also be automated to eliminate repetitive and mundane, but time-consuming tasks. They also have a neat feedback loop feature where you can share notes with collaborators easily by tagging their name in the notes field of any candidate profile.
One thing that stands out with JazzHR is how they included specific features to improve the candidate experience of the recruitment process. Consistent messaging and incorporated branding elements help to create a seamless experience of your company brand for external candidates. Without leaving the JazzHR platform, recruiters can text candidates directly to boost engagement, since the average person checks their phone more frequently than they check emails. For small teams or businesses with no internal HR support, their embedded Interview Guides help you conduct effective interviews that ask the right questions to support informed hiring decisions.
JazzHR has 95 integrations with common HR software platforms including Office 365, G Suite, Gusto, Bob, BambooHR, Sapling, HR Cloud, GoCo, MassPay, Collage, Namely, Zenefits, and many other job boards and job syndication sites.
Pricing for JazzHR starts at $39 USD/month for unlimited users and 3 open jobs (plus $9 USD/job/month if you need to post more). A 21-day free trial plus a free demo can also be arranged via their website.
Offer letter templates are built right into BambooHR’s applicant tracking system, making it fast and easy to get offers into candidates hands.
Efficiency and speed are two core elements of BambooHR’s applicant tracking system, which includes time-saving features like sending multiple email template responses at once, and branded digital offer letters that auto-populate candidate and job details. To improve the candidate experience, electronic signatures also make it fast and easy to accept a new position. Automated reminders also ensure hiring managers communicate with applicants in a timely fashion, ensuring they feel acknowledged and informed throughout the hiring process.
To help with your overall recruitment process, BambooHR also includes useful birds-eye-view applicant information. Their Applicant Sources Report parses out your candidate data to show you where the majority of your applicants are coming from, helping you to either focus your resources on what’s working the best, or address any shortcomings directly. As well, their Applicant Funnel Report digs deeper into your recruitment timeline to pinpoint the slower portions of your process so you can look at ways to speed up those steps.
BambooHR integrates directly with 60+ common HR software solutions including job posting boards like Indeed, Glassdoor, and ZipRecruiter, as well as social media sites like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. They also have a full-feature mobile app so you can stay in touch with candidates from anywhere.
Pricing details for BambooHR are available upon request. A free trial and free demo can also be requested via their website.
Recooty’s straightforward recruiting solution makes it easy to build a branded careers page to publish all your open positions.
Recooty’s modern ATS includes the core features you’d expect to streamline your recruiting process including a visual talent pipeline, the ability to review applications and schedule interviews, and tools to import candidates from different sources into your own customized talent pools. You can also use Recooty to develop a branded careers page, feed job postings directly to popular career websites like Indeed, Glassdoor and Monster, and share them through popular social networking sites like LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Known for its ease of use, Recooty is used by over 5,000 organizations and is available in 6 languages: English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and Hindi.
Specific software integration details are not listed on Recooty’s website, though they do offer API integrations at their top tier pricing level.
Pricing for Recooty starts at $49 USD/month. A 15-day free trial and free demo can also be requested via their website.
Link your recruiting process with other core HR functions like onboarding and training with Eddy’s all-in-one HR solution.
Eddy’s HR platform is a great choice for small businesses needing HR tech beyond just recruiting since their all-in-one software includes everything from onboarding, to training tracking, PTO (paid time off) tracking and an employee directory with detailed employee profiles. Their full-featured ATS is available as an add-on, in addition to payroll and HR advisor services.
Key features that make their ATS software efficient are their drag-and-drop custom hiring pipeline and automated stage actions that cover everything from scheduling interviews to sending out offer letters. Their system also includes collaborative hiring tools where HR team members can tag and filter candidates, give candidates star ratings, share feedback and notes, and even brighten up their information sharing with emojis.
Specific software integration details are not available on Eddy’s website. However, like many other ATS systems in this list, job postings are automatically synced with common career sites like Indeed, Glassdoor and LinkedIn, getting you lots of exposure, with just a few clicks.
Pricing for Eddy starts at $8 USD/employee/month, plus a $49 USD base fee per month. You can also request a free quote and free demo via their website.
Need Expert Help Selecting The Right Applicant Tracking (ATS) Software?
People Managing People has joined forces with the software comparison platform Crozdesk.com to assist you in finding the best tool for your needs. Crozdesk’s Applicant Tracking (ATS) Software advisors can create a personalized shortlist of software solutions with unbiased recommendations to help you identify the solutions that best suit your business’s needs. Through our partnership you get free access to their bespoke software selection advice, removing both time and hassle from the research process.
It only takes a minute to submit your requirements and they will give you a quick call at no cost or commitment. Based on your needs you’ll receive customized software shortlists listing the best-fitting solutions from their team of software advisors (via phone or email). They can even connect you with your selected vendor choices along with community negotiated discounts. To get started, please complete the form below:
The 10 Best Applicant Tracking Systems For Small Businesses
Here’s a few more options that didn’t make the best applicant tracking software top 10 list:
GoHire - ATS system with industry-specific customizations to help businesses scale
Rise - Comprehensive recruiting and core HR solution for Canadian companies of any size
Recruiteze - Cloud-based ATS with customizable workflows, hiring metrics and unlimited tags to help teams mark, sort and filter candidates as needed - available as a free trial or a free forever plan for 1 user.
Jobvite - Combined ATS and onboarding system that makes the transition from candidate to new employee easy, efficient, and paperless.
Workable - ATS software with AI-powered candidate sourcing recommendations, an internal job portal, and gamified employee referrals.
Greenhouse Recruiting - Recruiting solution with job kick off forms customized for each job opening to quickly screen job applicants.
Freshworks Freshteam - HRMS platform including recruitment module with autopilot feature for routine tasks like follow-ups, screening and notifications - available as a free trial or free forever plan for up to 50 employees.
Zoho Recruit - End-to-end recruitment and ATS tool suitable for corporate HR teams or as staffing software for temp or staffing agencies.
Collage - Award-winning HRIS platform with an integrated applicant tracking system, well-suited for Canadian organizations, and available in English or French.
iCIMS Recruit - Talent management software with embedded recruitment marketing solutions to attract the best talent and communicate your brand, mission and company values.
Bullhorn - Scalable applicant tracking and CRM system that pairs high-touch service with high-tech efficiency, creating a positive candidate experience.
Ascendify - Talent acquisition suite with integrated ATS and CRM features, AI talent matching and predictive hiring tools.
Yello - Recruiting software with specialized tools for recruiting early talent (university students and graduates new in their careers), including tools for planning and optimizing college recruiting fairs and events.
Avature - Comprehensive talent management software with integrated ATS and tools to support recruiter training for growing HR teams.
Beamery - Talent lifecycle management software that links candidate sourcing with talent marketing, insights, and workforce planning to help teams proactively hire to fill skill gaps.
hireEZ - AI-powered outbound recruiting platform designed to strategically target candidates for senior or hard-to-fill positions, well-suited for industries like tech, IT, and security & defense.
Symphony Talent - Recruitment marketing platform dedicated to improving the candidate experience.
Lever - Scalable talent acquisition software with tools to prioritize diversity and inclusion and overcome unconscious bias during the hiring process.
MyRecruitment Platform - Applicant tracking system with custom screening questionnaires and a psychometrics analysis tool that analyzes candidate video interviews and produces a talent assessment report.
Hiring Room - Mobile recruiting software with tools to viralize job openings, manage and hire candidates - available as a 15-day free trial.
What Is An Applicant Tracking System?
An applicant tracking system (ATS) is a type of software that organizes the recruiting and hiring process for recruiters or collaborative hiring teams. Common functions included in an ATS cover activities such as candidate sourcing, applicant management, candidate screening, distributing offer letters, onboarding, and more. This type of software is sometimes described more generically as recruiting software or talent acquisition software.
You can often find applicant tracking features within larger HR software suites, or there are standalone ATS platforms too.
What Are The Benefits Of Using An Applicant Tracking System?
Depending on the size of your recruitment outreach, you are likely dealing with a handful of positions that you’re scouting for simultaneously, all with distinct candidate skills and requirements. On top of that, you have candidates submitting their applications around the clock, vying for your attention and time.
Without the right tools, juggling all that information can be overwhelming. By investing in an applicant tracking system, you can expect the following benefits:
A streamlined process from end-to-end using customized automations
Improved social reach through direct access to job boards and media networks
Ability to develop a long-term database of passive candidates for future postings
Integration with other HR systems such as onboarding and payroll applications
Increased security and data protection
According to recent research, 98% of Fortune 500 companies use an ATS for their recruitment cycle, followed by 66% of large companies and 35% of small companies. However, regardless of the size of your business, by investing in the best ATS for your business needs, you will suddenly find yourself with a heightened ability to find the best talent for each position.
Need Expert Help Finding The Right Human Resource Software?
We’ve partnered with the software comparison portal Crozdesk.com to help you find the right solution. Crozdesk’s Human Resource Software advisors can give you independent advice and shortlist software products that best fit your specific needs. Our partnership gives you free access to their tailored software selection advice and community negotiated discounts, taking the hassle out of the research process.
It takes just a minute to submit your requirements and they will give you a call at no cost or commitment. You’ll get custom product shortlists covering the top solutions that best fit your specific needs from their team of software experts (via phone or email) and they can even connect you to your choice of the selected vendors. To get started, please submit the form below: