If you are looking to integrate multiple HRIS and ATS apps with a single API key, check out Knit API. If you are looking to learn more about key ATS API concepts, data models and use cases, keep reading.
One of the first steps towards fueling a high powered organization is by onboarding the right talent. However, with the changing skill sets and dynamics of recruitment, hiring is becoming increasingly complex.
As a result, most companies today are relying on different applications to streamline and automate the entire hiring process.There are several applications that come together to build the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) and for application management, right from sending out a requisition to the final offer acceptance and onboarding.
78% recruiters using ATS report having increased the efficiency of their hiring process. To make the process even more effective and efficient, companies want these applications to talk and automatically exchange data to keep pace with each other. Thus, ATS integration is becoming increasingly sought after, giving impetus to the rise of ATS API.
In this article, we will cover the different facets of ATS integration, focusing on key concepts, use cases, data models, etc. to understand how ATS APIs will change the dynamics of recruitment.
Key Applicant Tracking (ATS) concepts
The first step to facilitate ATS integration is to understand the different ATS concepts that can help you familiarize yourself with the right terminology.
1. Job requisition
Even before an organization starts receiving and processing applications, a key concept to understand is job requisition. Essentially, a job requisition is a template or a form which contains all the details about the job for which applicants are being sought. This includes details on the requirements as well as the process of closing the positions, like assessments, interviews, etc. It may also include details of the hiring manager and other relevant information. Different apps can have different ways of assigning job requisitions.
2. Sourcing and mapping
Sourcing and mapping starts once the job requirements become clear. The HR or the recruitment manager generally navigates through different platforms and candidate pools to identify the right candidates and map them to different openings within the organization. Sourcing is when the hiring manager proactively reaches out to qualified candidates for a specific job opening.
3. Candidates, attachments and applications
These three are integral concepts for any ATS API. While the terminology might change slightly for different applications, you will find all of these in some essence.
- Candidates refers to the individuals who apply for different roles and this category contains all details about them including name, location, skills, qualifications, etc. While most of the information is public, some information about disability, caste, religion, may be sensitive and stored privately.
- Next key ATS integration concept is that of attachments. Each candidate brings forth a set of documents that are relevant for the job they are applying to. These generally include the resume, cover letters, previous work samples, portfolios, etc. Together, these documents are referred to as attachments.
- Finally, a candidate may apply to one or more roles. Thus, they can have different applications. The application generally has information regarding when the application was started, current status, active or archive, etc.
4. Interviews, activities and offers
Another set of concepts come into play when the communication with a candidate begins.
- The first of them is the ATS API concept of interviews. This object generally has information about the interview like the location, date and time, whether or not it happened, etc.
- Activities as a data object for ATS API refers to different communications that happen with a candidate. It includes details on emails, comments, and other aspects focusing on the subject, activity body, etc.
- Finally, after all communication and interviews, offers are rolled out to candidates. The offer object stores data such as the date the offer has been extended, till when it is valid, when the offer is to be accepted, job start date, etc.
Top ATS APIs in the market
By now you understand that there are several layers to the ATS integration with different types of applications. Here are the top ATS APIs which you should consider connecting with to make hiring smooth and streamlined for your organization.
1. Job posting APIs
The first set of ATS integration you should look out for is the one which can help you with job posting. This involves ensuring that your company profile and job openings are visible to potential candidates to generate interest and leads.
Top job posting ATS API: Indeed, Monster, Naukri, The Muse
2. Candidate/ Lead sourcing APIs
Once the job has been posted, the next step is to build a pipeline of potential candidates. ATS applications for candidate and lead sourcing help extract important candidate data for profile matching, referrals, etc.
Top candidate sourcing ATS API: Zoho, Freshteam, LinkedIn
3. Resume parsing APIs
The next step after candidate sourcing is resuming sorting. Here resume parsing applications make sense for your ATS integration. These help with automated collection, storage and filtering of resumes. Resume parsing ATS APIs can help extract relevant information from resumes like skills, expected salary, previous experience, etc. to help align candidate profiles with job requirements.
Top resume parsing ATS API: Zoho Recruit, HireAbility, CVViz
4. Interview management APIs
Resume screening needs to be followed by interviews to identify a role-fit for the candidates. However, interview management can be extremely complicated. ATS APIs for interviews help address all challenges, including assessments to gauge technical skills, scheduling, managing interview related travel information, etc.
Top interview management ATS API: Calendly, HireVue, HackerRank, Qualified.io, Talview
5. Candidate communication APIs
Communicating effectively with the candidates is extremely important during the whole hiring process. ATS APIs for candidate communication can help automate email, text and other messages and keep track of all interactions in a streamlined manner.
Top candidate communication ATS API: Grayscale, Paradox
6. Offer extension and acceptance APIs
Finally, once you decide to onboard a particular candidate, you need relevant ATS integration for extending the offer where the candidate can accept the same and share any document(s) that you might need for onboarding. Offer acceptance applications facilitate electronic signatures, and other formalities in a seamless manner.
Top offer extension and acceptance ATS API: DocuSign, AdobeSign, DropBox Sign
To check out Knit’s entire ATS and HRIS API catalog click here
7. Background verification APIs
When you are extending an offer, it is very important to ensure background verification or check for your potential employees. While you may have performed initial reference checks when you received the application, while hiring someone, you need to get a more comprehensive understanding of their profile. Doing this manually can be extremely time and resource extensive.
Here, ATS integrations for background verification can help you run a check based on your required parameters on the candidate profile and flag any concerns if they appear. This way, you can be rest assured that the employees who come on board don’t have any form of ethical or legal or any other baggage.
Top background verification ATS API: Certn, Hireology, HireRight, GoodHire
8. Analytics and reporting APIs
Now that your hiring is complete, you should analyze the entire process to gauge where you stand in terms of open positions, the DEI status for your organization, overall headcount, etc. ATS integration for analytics and reporting can help you get dashboard with all such information
Top analytics and reporting ATS API: LucidChart, ChartHop
ATS Integration Data Use cases
One of the biggest benefits of ATS integration is that organizations are easily able to integrate a lot of data about the candidate and terms of hiring with significant new use cases.
On one hand, organizations can internally use this data for better decision making and ensure effective human resources distribution. On the other hand, this data can become the foundation for other companies to facilitate seamless business continuity across industries.
In this section, we will discuss the top ATS API use cases that SaaS companies are applying today.
I) Seamless onboarding
The first major use case for data from ATS APIs revolves around onboarding and building of HRIS data. With ATS integrations, important data about the candidate like demographic information, qualifications, documents, attachments, identity proofs etc. which are collected during the course of applicant tracking can be automatically transported to the HRMS or HRIS. Furthermore, the salary details and other terms of employment as shared during offer extension can also be communicated to the payroll APIs.
This brings along twin benefits.
- First, the candidate doesn’t have to share the same information multiple times, making onboarding smooth for them.
- Second, your HR managers also don’t have to invest manual bandwidth and efforts in replicating the data for their records.
II) Compensation management
As mentioned, ATS API integrations can ensure that all details about the candidate compensation are shared with the payroll application to facilitate correct salary calculation and on-time disbursement. This is specifically useful if you are on a mass hiring mode and don’t want to delay your payroll.
Furthermore, compensation data from your ATS, not only for the selected candidates but also the salary expectations and other details can help you ensure fair and equitable compensation management. This data can help you understand what the market expectations are and how you are able to address the same. Similarly, data from ATS API can help gauge discrepancies or differences that might crop up across gender, experiences, level of seniority. Invariably, this data can help you facilitate fair pay based on market standards to attract the best talent.
At the same time, third party companies which are experts in compensation management and consulting can integrate this data with their findings to help you with the best practices.
III) Diversity and inclusion
An essential part that you need to focus on during hiring and afterwards is the diversity and inclusion aspect of your workforce. The ATS API data can help you understand the diversity of the candidate pool vis-a-vis the final hiring and closing of positions. Based on this data, your internal DEI team or external experts can help you understand if there is a leakage of diversity along the way.
Invariably this will encourage you to understand if some part of your hiring process is biased or if you are using ATS applications which are not inclusive enough. You can identify the positions or roles where your diversity ratio is specifically low to understand the concerns. Simultaneously, you can make conscious efforts to bridge this lack of diversity.
IV) Automated job posting
ATS API data will be incredibly helpful in automating the job posting process. For instance, data from interviews and other applications can indicate the pipeline of candidates and their status. In case the pipeline for a particular role is getting extremely weak with a lot of rejections during interviews or offer acceptances, your ATS application for job boards can be triggered for job posting followed by candidate sourcing and resume parsing.
Here, the idea is to reduce manual time that goes into identifying which roles are still open and doubling down efforts on sourcing candidates for the same. This will only be possible when you can get real time data with continuous sync from your ATS APIs about the status of different candidates and applications.
Key ATS API data models
Most ATS apps have specific data models which they use to streamline workflow and dataflow. As a unified API for ATS integration, Knit focuses on the following data models for ATS API:
Contains all applicant details like job ID, status, owner, credited to (who receives credit for the application), applied at, updated at, etc. It also contains information about the candidate, location, links and documents attached, among others.
The stage at which the applicant is currently at, ranging from applied to selected or rejected with a stage ID and stage name.
Keeps all the information regarding a candidate's interview, when it is scheduled for, start time, end time, status, list of interviewers, location, etc.
Contains data and information about any rejected application or candidate, including job ID, reason for rejection, rejected at which stage, etc.
All the offers extended to an application. It contains the details about the offer as well as the status to define whether the offer has been extended, signed, declined. It also keeps data on when the offer was extended, when it was closed, etc.
Application resume or attachments refers to all the documents (such as resume, cover letter etc) which are associated with a particular candidate or application. They are present in the form of downloadable links and when it was created.
Along with these application data models, Knit also offers several key job data models. For more details, check our documentation
Get started with unified ATS API
Now that you understand different aspects of ATS integrations, it’s time to get started with it. If you look closely, you will realize that there are several categories of applications within the ATS segment. Each application comes with its own API, data syntax, end points, data models, etc. Due to this immense fragmentation in the ATS market, a unified API for ATS integration is the need of the hour.
A unified ATS API like Knit will help you normalize data from all your ATS applications and facilitate real time data sync to facilitate continuous and secure data exchange.
However, when you plan to get started with a unified API for ATS integration, get yourself acquainted with the following questions.
What API format is being used?
The first thing you need to check is which API format does the unified API for ATS integration provide. By adding an additional abstraction layer, the unified API ensures that your engineering team has to only deal with only one API format. However, you need to check among the different API formats like REST, SOAP, RPC, GraphQL, etc. which one is the foundation for your unified API.
Generally, REST based unified API is most sought after as it is lightweight, independent, scalable and flexible.
How does it ensure authentication?
You need to ensure that your unified API for ATS integration supports unified authentication. Here, you don’t have to force custom logic to factor in different forms of authentication based on different applications. Rather, there is a single form of authentication that you can rely on, whereas integrating everything on the backend to prevent the back and forth is taken care of by the unified API provider.
What is the set API rate limit?
Rate limit specifically refers to how many API calls can you make in a given period of time for information request or exchange. If you have a lower rate limit and more API calls, it can lead to distorted unified API behavior.
This request or rate limiting needs to be made in conjecture with your customer needs to ensure smooth functioning.
Are test accounts available?
You might add more ATS APIs to your unified API as your scope or need increases. However, chances are you might want to try them out before you actually implement them for your customers. Therefore, you should check whether or not your unified API offers test accounts. Their presence is imperative especially from an active development perspective and to ensure smooth functioning before you go live with new features or applications.
Does it offer unified pagination?
Pagination essentially refers to how the data from different application APIs get sorted for exchange. A unified API for ATS integration should provide you with unified pagination, which supports all forms of pagination. A unified API can help abstract all forms of pagination including offset pagination, page pagination, cursor pagination, link pagination, etc. Post abstraction, it provides a unified pagination that provides a more consistent and better experience.
What is the architecture followed?
In a unified API, you can use either webhook or polling first architecture for data sync.
- In a webhook architecture, the data gets synced automatically, with a push-based sync and no polling infrastructure is needed by the customer. Here, data updates are synced as and when they happen.
- However, for polling first architecture, data updates rely upon poll databases, requiring a separate infrastructure. You need to make an API call at frequent intervals to ensure data is synced periodically.
Thus, you need to decide which architecture you need. From an ease of use perspective, webhooks architecture makes sense for continuous sync without the need to maintain any additional infrastructure.
Does it ensure ATS integration management?
Finally, you need to ensure that your unified API supports ATS integration management once the APIs have been implemented. Gauge whether or not it bears full responsibility for troubleshooting, handling errors and all other maintenance related activities.
Knit unified API for ATS integration
As a unified API, Knit seeks to make it seamless for SaaS businesses to implement native integrations to scale their growth. With Knit API, you can shift the heavy lifting of integration building and maintenance as it takes care of:
- Continuous data sync with a 100% webhook architecture (Knit is the only unified API in the market today that does not store any of your end-user data at our end, ensuring better security. Learn more)
- Push based data-sync model, eliminating the need for any polling infrastructure
- Customizable scopes for giving your end-users granular control
- DIY dashboard to make it easier for your CX to solve customer issues
- Seamless integration maintenance and management, error handling, etc.
Overall, with Knit as your unified API for ATS integration, you can save thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours in engineering resources, enabling you to provide a consistent developer experience and leverage ATS data from different applications to supercharge your ATS and hiring process. Get you Knit API keys today
Wrapping up: TL:DR
As we draw this article to a close, it is important to note that a unified API for ATS integration can help you seamlessly deal with the ATS market fragmentation and ensure smooth data exchange. Keep in mind factors like common authentication, pagination, test account, rate limits, etc. when making a choice.