Applicant Tracking System: Expectations vs. Reality

The tracking system has over the years has grown from strength to strength. By incorporating the latest technologies, it has secured for itself an indispensable place in the recruitment process of the organizations. Institutions that are hiring candidates are now resorting on the automated execution of tasks by the tracking system, irrespective of their share worth, net worth and the capacity of their workforce.

Despite this astounding success of the tracking system and its warm reception by the recruiters far and wide, there still remains a good number of organizations reluctant to automate their recruitment process by adapting the tracking system. This is due to the existence of certain myths, perceptions, and expectations of the observers which more often than not is found to be far from reality.

Here is a list of such expectations and a brief on the true reality of the applicant tracking system:

Storage & Analysis

Expectation: Tracking system is only a data repository.

The tracking system will serve as a huge data repository that will save the details of the candidates who have applied for the designation. It does not just read through each and every application received but also stores them in an organized fashion. It serves as a mere data repository that stores the application data which can be redeemed and retrieved in case there arise any future needs.

Reality: This expectation from the tracking system is very well met by its capabilities. But there is more to reality. The automated system is not just capable of storing the details of the candidates but can also provide the recruiters with a complete analysis of the potential of the candidates. This enables the recruiters to understand the nature and intensity of the qualifications of the candidates who have successfully gone through the initial stages of the recruitment process. This feature also aids the recruiters in realizing the expectations from the applicant’s side as well.


Expectation: The tracking system does not work well alongside the existing software.

The tracking system is generally viewed from a skeptical perspective on its capacity of being integrated with the existing software. The earlier versions of the tracking system were undoubtedly rigid and hence were not capable of being merged with the working of the software already in place. The tracking system once brought into the functioning of the organization would earlier tend to freeze the performances of the other software.

Reality: This might have been true in the case of the early versions of the tracking system. But over the years, it has expanded its capabilities and has widened its scope, making it a user-friendly and an integration-friendly software. It can now be integrated with the existing software of the organization without disrupting its effective functioning or decelerating its performance.

The current versions of the automated system, automatically add the candidate’s information to the organization’s employee data repository at the very moment of being hired. These data can be utilized by the other software of the organization to update further work details of the employee as well.

Therefore, the tracking system works in complete cordiality with the other software already existing and is also highly flexible to exhibit compatibility with the ones that will be deployed in the future as well.

Operational factors

Expectation: The tracking system requires additional resources for successful operation.

The automation process requires the deployment of exclusive human resources alongside additional hardware support to ensure its successful functioning.

Reality: The tracking system has over the evolved by and large by opening out new windows and by incorporating the latest of technologies and innovations of the digital era into its working process. The tracking system of the present times works on a cloud-based model. It can be automated and customized on a post-to-post basis without much effort. It does not require additional expenditure on human resources and hardware to supervise its functioning or ensure effectiveness in its execution of tasks. This system is hence being operated remotely by the organization without any requirement of human intervention.

Candidate response

Expectation: The tracking system only informs the candidates on selection.

The tracking system not just performs the task of screening through the applications received but also ensures that the candidates who get through the initial stages of the recruitment process are informed on their selection to the interview session by the recruiters.

Reality: This remains closer to reality as the tracking system along with this feature ensures that all the candidates who have applied to various designations available at the organizations are sent an acknowledgment mail at the event of receiving their application. It also keeps them updates on the status of the application throughout the recruitment process and also sends e-mails to candidates who have been screened out as well.

This increases the credibility and reputation of the organization as it keeps the recruitment process transparent and well-updated, without keeping the aspirants wondering and waiting on the results of the process. When the candidates are provided with appropriate correspondence from the organization, it eventually increases the desirability for the organization amongst them.

Human Intervention

Expectation: The tracking system makes the recruitment process completely automated.

The tracking system due to its features of customizations and automation is believed to be completely free from human intervention. Most of the candidates assume that the entire process is carried out only by the system without any involvement of the recruiters.

Reality: The tracking system is, in fact, being customized only on the basis of the inputs provided by the recruiters of the organization. It is only automated to apply filters and screen out the applications that are found to be irrelevant or under/overqualified for the designation.

The tracking system cannot be cheated on, as it is backed up by interactive session and testing modules organized and evaluated by the recruiters in person. This busts the myth of the application of the candidates, not meeting human eye at all throughout the process. The tracking system is automated only to perform the initial stages of the recruitment process and is not meant to hire employees for the workforce. It is only incorporated to aid and assist the recruiters in the hiring process and is not meant to replace them. The tracking system is customized to perform only the manual process of the recruitment process while it the HR personnel who perform the cognizable tasks, zero in on the candidates and take the final call.

Hence it is essential to have a thorough understanding of the characteristic features of the tracking system in order to realize the ultimate potential of it. It can serve well, without errors and is capable of making the initial stages of the recruitment process, completely free from human interference.

The tracking system, with its unmatched potential and ability, is being incorporated by and large by a number of organizations and is being greatly recommended by the recruiting officials as well. It despite saving the recruiters of time and energy, it also prevents the organization from spending too much of its human and financial resources on the recruitment process. This reinstates a lot of benefits the automated tracking system can bring to the table.

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