Today, recruitment without ATS applications seems almost impossible. From candidate sourcing and screening to communication and onboarding — every part of the recruitment workflow is tied to ATS apps.
Research shows that 78% of recruiters using an ATS report that it has improved the quality of the candidates they hire.
Hiring qualified talent for an organization can be a resource intensive and long drawn process. The entire recruitment workflow has multiple steps and layers, which when accomplished manually can be extremely time consuming. However, companies which leverage recruitment workflow automation by using ATS APIs can save 100s of hours spent in heavy lifting.
Recruitment workflow and automation with ATS APIs
Let’s start with understanding the various stages of recruitment workflow and how automation with ATS APIs can help.
Job requisition and posting
The first step involves creating job requisitions based on hiring needs across different teams. This is followed by creating appropriate job descriptions and posting on job boards to attract candidates.
With ATS APIs, this entire process can be automated. ATS APIs come with pre-defined templates to create job requisitions and job descriptions. They also have integrations with leading job boarding to facilitate automatic posting and role promotion of job boards.
Candidate sourcing and screening
Next, most recruitment professionals focus on collecting data on candidate profiles from different job boards. Then, they engage in screening and shortlisting the resumes following a manual process, which takes a long time.
ATS APIs automate the collection of candidate data, resume and other basic information. It goes a step beyond with resume parsing to automate extraction of relevant candidate data from the resume and facilitate storage in a ready to use format for easy screening.
Once the screening is complete, interview scheduling for the shortlisted candidates is the next step. Manually, the process requires a lot of back and forth with interviewers and interviewees, managing schedules, sending invitations and reminders, etc.
ATS APIs led automation takes care of all scheduling struggles and automates the process of sending invitations, reminders and other candidate communication in the process.
Scheduling interviews/ tests is followed by conducted assessments to gauge the candidate's aptitude, skills, knowledge, personality and cognitive abilities for the role.
ATS APIs can easily automate test assessment via online proctored solutions and even record scores and present it to the decision makers in a streamlined and easy to understand format.
When it comes to decision making, ATS APIs can collate evaluation, assessment results and feedback of all candidates and even rank them based on comprehensive scores to help decision makers with data-driven insights on the best candidate for the role.
Job offer and onboarding
Once a candidate has been selected, the ATS API can automatically send the offer letter based on pre-defined templates. Acceptance of the offer letter by the candidate can automatically trigger document signing digitally, thereby automating the entire onboarding process. Bi-directional data sync will ensure that all steps of employee onboarding are conducted automatically.
An ATS API also enables recruitment professionals to automatically capture, manage and update all the relevant information about the candidate, application and status in a common platform, which can be accessed as and when needed.
Throughout the recruitment workflow, there are several touchpoints with the candidate. ATS API: can help recruitment professionals with personalized communication templates for candidates based on their application status, interview performance, feedback, etc.
Finally, the ATS API can provide recruitment professionals with key data points and metrics to gauge recruitment performance. Metrics like time to hire, source, open positions, candidate diversity, interview to hire ratio, can all be collated in one report by the ATS API and presented.
Process of automating the recruitment workflow with ATS APIs
With understanding of the recruitment workflow, let’s understand the process of automating the same with ATS API.
Identify the recruitment stages to automate
To begin with, you need to understand the recruitment stages in your organization and identify the ones which require a lot of heavy lifting and can be automated. For instance, while conducting the interviews cannot be automated, scheduling them and compiling the feedback and evaluation can be. Thus, identify the stages to automate and what benefits you seek to achieve as a result of automation.
Choose the ATS APIs
There are multiple ATS APIs in the market today. While each one of them comes with multiple functionalities across the recruitment workflow, some are likely to be better over others for particular use cases. Therefore, to leverage automation with ATS API, choose the ones that best suit your industry and requirements. You might even choose multiple ATS APIs and integrate them to your system for different purposes, while also integrating one with another.
Obtain the necessary API credentials from the ATS provider.
Once you have selected the ATS APIs, it’s time to get into the technical aspects of getting the integration in place. To integrate the ATS API, you need to get access to specific credentials and authentication from the ATS provider. These include API key, access tokens, client ID, client secret, endpoints, etc. Once you have these, only then can the integration process begin. Also, ensure you understand the authentication process well.
Integrate with the ATS APIs
Once you have the necessary credentials, get started with the integration. This will require coding and engineering effort as you will be building the integration from scratch. Understand the data models, endpoints, authorization by going through the API documentation for each ATS API you choose. Simultaneously get started with data mapping, authentication, error handling, etc. followed by testing to gauge the effectiveness of your integration. Each integration can take anywhere between a few weeks to a few months.
Monitor, manage and maintain your ATS APIs
Post integration, you need to keep track of your data exchange and transformation process. Ensure that data synchronization is happening as per your expectations. Your need to keep track of unstable APIs or any updates in the same, error logging challenges, expiry or deactivation of webhooks, management of large data volume, among others. At the same time, monitor any security threats or unauthorized access push.
Finally, optimize your ATS API integration process. Identify the major challenges from the maintenance and management standpoint and focus on fixing the issues to create a better integration experience for your teams.
Limitations of using different ATS APIs for automating recruitment workflow
While using multiple ATS APIs to power different functionalities is enticing, it can be challenging and a major burden on your engineering and other teams. Here are a few limitations that might face while trying to integrate different ATS API for recruitment workflow automation.
Scale and optimization challenges
Each ATS API comes with different data fields, documentation and processes that need to be followed for integration. Integrating each one requires a steep learning curve for the engineering team. From a resource standpoint, each ATS API integration can take an average of four weeks, costing ~USD 10K. As you scale, there is an exponential time and monetary cost that comes along, which is applicable to each API you add. After a certain time, chances are that the costs and efforts associated with integration scale will significantly surpass the savings and benefits from automation.
Data transformation challenges
Each API, even within the same category of ATS will have different data models. For instance, the field of candidate name may be categorized as cand_name for one ATS API, while candidate_name for another one. To ensure that data from all APIs is consolidated for processing, you need to engage in data normalization and data transformation to process the data from different ATS APIs.
Data synchronization challenges
Next, data synchronization in real time can be a big challenge. If you are using a polling infrastructure, you will have to request data sync time and again, that too across multiple APIs. At the same time, data sync can be a challenge with scalability, when the data load becomes unmanageable. The inability to facilitate real time data synchronization can lead to delays in the entire recruitment process or exclusion of applications during a particular round.
Monitoring and management
Error handling, monitoring and management is extremely resource intensive. It is extremely important to maintain the health of your integrations, by constantly logging their performance. It is important to keep track of API calls, log errors, data sync requests, etc. This is required to catch any potential errors early on and manage integrations better. However, monitoring each API for every second is manually very burdensome.
Compliance and security challenges
Compliance and security is a big challenge when it comes to integrations. Since you are dealing with a lot of personal data, you need to be on your toes when it comes to security. At the same time, each API will have a different authentication methodology as well as separate policies that you need to keep pace with.
Finally, you might need custom workflows from your ATS APIs, especially during data exchange between them. Building these custom workflows can be an engineering nightmare, let alone maintaining and monitoring them.
How unified API can help integrate with multiple ATS APIs for recruitment automation
Don’t get apprehensive about using different ATS APIs for automating your recruitment workflows. A unified API like Knit can help you integrate different ATS APIs effortlessly and in less than half the time. Here are the top benefits of using a unified API.
Unified API enables you to scale product integrations faster. You can easily add hundreds of ATS applications to your systems by just learning about the unified API. You no longer have to go through the API documentation of multiple applications or understand the nuances, processes, etc. It is highly time and cost effective from a scale and optimization lens.
Seamless data transformation with custom fields
A unified API like Knit can provide you with a common data model. You can easily eliminate the data transformation nuances and complex processes for different APIs. It enables you to map different data schemas from different ATS applications into a single, unified data model as normalized data. In addition, you can also incorporate custom data fields i.e. you can access any non-standard data you need, which may not be included in the common ATS data model.
Real time data sync
Following a webhooks based event driven architecture, unified APIs like Knit ensure real time data sync. Without the need for any polling infrastructure or request, Knit facilitates assured real time data sync, irrespective of the data load. Furthermore, it also sends automatic notifications and alerts when new data has been updated.
Knit, as a unified API, helps companies leveraging ATS integration ensure high levels of security. It is the only unified API which doesn’t store a copy of the customer data. Furthermore, being 100% webhook-based architecture, it facilitates greater security. You don’t have to navigate through different security policies for different APIs and can access OAuth, API key or a username-password based authentication. Finally, all data with our unified API is doubly encrypted, when in rest and when in transit.
Easy integration management
With a unified API like Knit, integration management also becomes seamless. It enables you to monitor and manage all ATS integrations using a detailed Logs, Issues, Integrated Accounts and Syncs page. Furthermore, the fully searchable Logs keep track of API calls, data syncs and requests and status of each webhook registered. This effectively streamlines integration management and error resolution 5x faster.
Recruitment professionals and leaders involved in different stages of the recruitment lifecycle can leverage ATS integrations to automate their workflows. With the right ATS API, each stage of the recruitment workflow can be automated to a certain extent to save time and effort. However, building and maintaining different ATS API can be challenging with issues of scale, data transformation, synchronization, etc. Fortunately, with a unified API, companies can address these issues for seamless scalability, data transformation with a unified data model supported by custom data fields, high security with double encryption, webhook architecture for real time data sync, irrespective of workload and easy integration management with detailed logs, issues, etc. Get started with a unified API to integrate all your preferred ATS applications to automate and streamline your recruitment workflows.