The Top Applicant Tracking Systems


Stop us if you’ve been here before: you’re looking to hire a for a new position, so you publish a job posting.  You put the job description on your website, social media, and on a few job boards.  You look the next day, and you already have a hundred resumes submitted from job seekers.  A few days later you have hundreds more, and you have to close the posting just so you have some semblance of a chance of sorting through all those resumes.  You then spend the next week in a whirlpool of resumes, cover letters and references before finding your shortlist of candidates to interview.

Get our Recruiting / ATS Comparison Matrix.

If only there was a better way to manage the hiring process. Well, sure enough, there is.  Applicant tracking systems, also known as applicant tracking software or ATS, help screen candidates and manage the entire hiring process.  ATS are web-based software commonly placed under the talent management umbrella.  They’ve also resulted in thousands of recruiters celebrating a less-stressful hiring process.  It’s no wonder why ATS is one of the top requirements for human resource software buyers.

How do Applicant Tracking Systems Work?

Like most business software, applicant tracking systems are all about automation.  When an applicant applies online, all of their information gets collected in a database.  The database holds everything from application questions to education backgrounds and resumes.  The ATS sorts through this information and presents the top applicants to you.

As you’ve probably experienced, most applicants don’t possess all of the basic qualifications you’re looking for.  Rather than sorting through hundreds of unqualified job seekers, an ATS finds only the most qualified candidates for you to look at.  Rather than days, the resume screening process is done in minutes.  Without automated resume screening, recruiters are only able to spend six seconds per resume.  But after an ATS finds the most relevant applicants, you can take all the time you want to review the resumes you actually want to see.

An ATS doesn’t just automate the recruiter’s side of the process.  It also automates applicant communication by sending them automated messages.  These can be used to inform an applicant that you received their resume, send a link for an online test or send a rejection email once you’ve made your hire.

Top Applicant Tracking Systems

Interested in adopting applicant tracking systems?  The use of applicant tracking systems is becoming more and more common, and many of today’s top HR software vendors include ATS.  We gathered a list of some of the top ATS, several of which have additional HR components:


Taleo is a talent management solution with powerful ATS features.  A part of the Oracle family of software, Taleo organizes the entire employee lifecycle.  The software is particularly focused on collecting data and providing insights so HR managers can find, hire and onboard the best talent available.


BambooHR is one of our most consistently top-rated HR solutions.  The all-in-one system was specifically designed with the needs of SMBs in mind.  A solution focused on reducing time as much as possible, tasks like onboarding are done completely digitally.


CareerPlug is a vendor solely dedicated to its applicant tracking software.  The system makes the recruitment process convenient and timely for both recruiters and applicants.  With CareerPlug, you can keep all of your recruiting data centralized so you can stay organized.  It also helps you get from beginning to end, from posting job descriptions all the way to paperless onboarding.


Jobvite is an ATS that implements the latest recruiting process to find your best hire.  One of these techniques uses the power of social media by using matching technology for social media profiles.  Talent acquisition is faster and higher quality thanks to Jobvite’s automated workflows and reporting tools.


Greenhouse is another dedicated applicant tracking systems vendor.  Greenhouse is all about communication.  Different departments and team members can communicate in the system to ensure a smooth recruitment process.  Greenhouse also helps guide companies through the entire process.  From job board integrations to greenlighting job offers, the whole process is easy and straightforward.

ADP Vantage

Another all-in-one HR software solution, ADP’s Vantage is focused on the people behind the business.  Two of its strongest features are its insights into employee engagement and talent management.  The system is easy to use and simplifies the administration involved in sourcing, screening and onboarding.  Plus, you can customize the hiring process to match your business’ talent strategy.

SAP SuccessFactors

SAP knows that just like any other part of your business, talent acquisition is a competition.  SuccessFactors goes above and beyond your typical ATS by forecasting not only your current workforce needs, but your future needs too.  Using this data, you can beat your competitors by finding and hiring the best candidates before they even think about hiring.

Zoho Recruit

Zoho Recruit aims to streamline your recruiting process as much as possible. If you don’t already have a careers page, you can use this applicant tracking system create a custom page that matches the rest of your site. Zoho also helps increase your visibility by publishing your job openings not only to your own website, but also to popular job boards. And in addition to automatic resume searching, filtering and tagging, you can create custom workflows that automate other daily tasks.


The Bullhorn cloud-based applicant tracking system describes itself as the fastest on the market. Although it’s a fast system, that doesn’t mean it compromised on any features to achieve that. For example, Bullhorn provides a mobile recruiting software that you can access from anywhere. In the mobile version, you can view and edit records, create notes and look at placement data. One of the most useful aspects of this is that this allows you to take notes right after meeting with a candidate to ensure that you don’t forget any crucial details.

Google Hire

With Google Hire, Google is expanding its list of services into the recruiting realm. Hire markets itself as an end-to-end solution, managing the interview process and building strong candidate relationships. The system is targeted mostly towards small and mid-sized businesses that also use other Google services. One of the big differentiators for Hire is that it directly integrates with G Suite apps like Gmail, Google Drive and Google Calendar.

Get our Recruiting / ATS Comparison Matrix.

SelectHubThe Top Applicant Tracking Systems


Join the conversation
  • David - February 28, 2019 reply

    Another great ATS is called Eddy ( It may not be the best option for enterprise size companies, but if you’re a small or medium-sized business, it’s hard to beat. The candidate pipeline is all drag and drop, collaboration is easy; it’s got job site integrations, a career page builder and it provides a collection of unique interview questions from a bunch of HR pros. It’s a great option

    Kim O'Shaughnessy - March 4, 2019 reply

    Hi David,

    Thanks for your comment! I’m sure our readers will appreciate the information.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *