Ty Collins, March 20, 2021
If you've been researching the right software for streamlining your hiring process, then you might have questions about the difference between recruitment software and talent acquisition software.
Often, people use recruitment and talent acquisition interchangeably, but they're not the same. Think of recruitment as a short-term fix for an immediate need. You have a vacancy that needs to be filled, so you initiate the recruitment process. But if your company's continually looking to bolster its talent pool, you'll need an ongoing strategy to meet your human resources agenda.
Thinking long-term helps you fill more challenging positions before a vacancy happens. This is especially true if you're hiring for niche markets, tech skills, or highly specialized roles. Talent acquisition supplies a steady stream of highly qualified candidates who are also more likely to contribute to the company's unique culture and strategic vision.
Organizations that are serious about their hiring process understand how it affects their long-term future. That’s why they typically prefer an all-in-one talent acquisition software system. These platforms offer a suite of comprehensive features rather than stacking tech from different vendors.
If you think your company's ready for a shift from recruitment to talent acquisition, then read on to review our list of the top suites.
Aside from the convenience of a one-stop-shop solution, talent acquisition suites also help you avoid integration woes. While popular software vendors offer wide-reaching integrations compatible with common recruitment and HR software — those integrations don't work for everyone.
Inexplicable glitches can happen with some vendors, and integrations can be tricky at best. So even though stacking your recruitment tech has tons of advantages, it gets trickier with every new module added.
With comprehensive talent acquisition software, you avoid most integration headaches, which is especially crucial for high-performing organizations.
The additional advantages of a talent acquisition suite include:
More customization options
More modern user experience
Increased mobile readiness
Pre-built HRIS (human resource information system) connectors
Seamless third-party integrations
Most top vendors include many (if not all) of these standard capabilities:
Candidate Relationship Management (CRM)
This helps you maintain or build a relationship with talented candidates before a vacancy opens. It allows immediate access to an available talent pool when a need arises. Think of it as a pipeline of talent the software helps you manage digitally.
In talent acquisition, marketing is about treating job seekers like customers to create a positive candidate experience with your company. Some approaches include building employer-branded career sites with videos, launching targeted landing pages, leveraging social networks, and creating a more engaging application experience.
Integrated Job Distribution
This allows you to select jobs and automatically distribute them to the top-performing venues of your choice. This feature often includes the option to evaluate your advertising ROI and make adjustments.
Applicant Tracking (ATS)
ATS helps you organize job applicants across workflows and ensures compliance with HR laws. Talent acquisition suites typically employ a more candidate-centric approach to applicant tracking.
This feature equips users with information and tools necessary for conducting insightful and profitable candidate interviews. They often use candidate ranking systems, standardized assessments, customizable scorecards (to guide the interviewer), and anonymous reviews with feedback.
With offer management, you can digitally manage documents and tasks that are part of the offer process. This feature often includes electronic approvals, template management, e-signatures, status updates on offers, and metrics.
Suites that offer onboarding provide a smooth transition for new hires, enabling quick completion of mobile-friendly government forms like I-9's, e-Verify, and W4's from any device. Typically, you can create task lists for your new hires, upload welcome and training videos, and monitor progress.
Jobvite takes automation to the next level, employing AI throughout their suite to eliminate tedious and repetitious tasks that consume your time and energy. After all, isn't recruiting all about relationships?
The company even claims to cut hiring time in half. While we can't verify that statement, online reviews tout its time-saving benefits throughout the acquisition process.
If you're concerned about how well new software will integrate with your HRIS system, you'll be glad to know that many customers applaud Jobvite's smooth integration capabilities.
Their suite offers an "end-to-end" solution with robust recruitment marketing features that include:
Are you concerned about integrating existing software systems with Jobvite? Then take a closer look at their integrations. Jobvite's suite provides over 350 pre-built integrations to a host of services that complement its features and capabilities. For a complete list of compatible vendors and software, visit the Jobvite Marketplace.
Lever checks most of the boxes for a highly comprehensive talent acquisition software, but a few features set this system apart.
Lever tracks more recruitment metrics than most HR managers or recruiters could imagine, and the system follows through with insightful recruiting reports. The reports even include interview calibration and conversion rates.
This means that Lever’s reports can tell you how many candidates flowed through your hiring pipeline and how many you actually hire.
This vendor also gets high marks for its employee referral process. Your employees can source and refer candidates to your company without disrupting existing workflows. It makes recruitment a team effort while maintaining a centralized data system.
To accomplish this, Lever uses a Chrome extension that allows employees to alert you to a candidate's profile. Once it's accepted into the platform, it's tracked like any other qualified talent. And you don't have to worry about keeping up with the referral source because Lever tracks and reports on that for you.
Communication is vital when it comes to recruitment. Lever's talent acquisition software facilitates this through email syncing. The software syncs with your team's email, allowing you to message them and send information directly through the platform using the formula "@coworker's name."
Email syncing streamlines conversation while working inside Lever and makes looping others in that much easier. It even integrates with Slack.
Zoho is proof that added value is often found in the details. While they offer a robust set of standard features, reviewers rave about their talent acquisition software's finer points.
Screening data to identify qualified candidates is only the beginning. Sifting through all that data to determine who advances to the next step in the hiring process — that's another matter entirely.
Zoho's resume parsing feature rises to the occasion, placing it front and center in many customer reviews. Users can quickly and easily access and search highly organized data and review analytical reports based on the collected information.
AI also plays a key role with Zoho's suite, even offering source "boosters" that allow you to search through a field of candidates that the system selected according to your parameters.
Source boosters take talent acquisition software to another level because it's not mere automation and algorithms. It sources and analyzes numerous areas of candidate information and processes it all "intelligently." This approach delivers top candidate profiles with extreme efficiency.
Zoho's auto-populated career website is another feature users frequently mention. The platform uses existing information about an open position to populate targeted landing pages known as career pages. This feature drastically reduces the time invested in page building, because the page already contains general information about a position. Plus, users can still customize these sites.
Ideal for larger enterprises, Talent Cloud is highly customizable and supported with helpful training videos and webinars to get you up and running without contacting the help desk (although reviewers give them big points for customer service).
But what are people talking about the most concerning this talent acquisition software?
Their single-screen dashboard. It's a user favorite because it consolidates the core menu for ease-of-use, offering quick access to tasks, calendars, applicant files, appointments, reports, communications, and other frequently used features.
Another user favorite is iCIMS Connect, a digitally guided process that helps you engage with passive candidates who aren't quite sure they're ready to make a career move. Candidates activate this feature by clicking on a "Not ready to apply?" button that sends them to a branded, mobile-friendly portal.
Here, the potential candidate chooses to engage in opportunities to connect with your company either through a traditional resume or social media platforms. They can also create a login for future returns to your company portal.
And if you're interested in more direct communication with your candidates, you can take advantage of an add-on feature called TextRecruit. It lets you interact with candidates in real-time when needed.
Still interested in embracing talent acquisition and elevating your recruiting process to the next level?
If so, here's a list of questions to help choose the talent acquisition software that's the best fit for your company.
What are the gaps in your recruiting process currently? Which platform addresses those pain points most effectively?
How many integrations does the platform require to connect to your HRIS?
Are there enough customization capabilities to fulfill your company's hiring needs?
Does the platform include CRM, Recruitment Marketing, Social Media Integrations, and AI?
How easily does the platform integrate with your existing vendors (like your background check vendor)?
Does the platform improve the candidate experience?
Do the mobile-friendly features provide a positive experience for your hiring team and candidates?
Does the platform offer an acceptable level of support?
How easy or difficult is it to use? How much training is required?
It's also a good idea to consult with your team about their pain points, needs, and nice-to-haves when it comes to the hiring process.
While your company might implement talent acquisition software that includes some scheduling features, most recruiters and HR managers require more robust tools that extend beyond the platform's confines.
That's where Calendly's powerful scheduling software takes the stage. Whether you're scheduling appointments, interviews, demos, training sessions, or calls, our software simplifies the process.
Calendly integrates with most of the popular calendar apps. Like Google, Outlook, iCloud, and Office 365. You can also connect up to six of your calendars to help prevent double-booking.
Here's a quick rundown of useful features:
Set a cap for the number of meetings each day
Add buffer time before and after events
Send confirmations and reminders via emails or texts
Intelligent time zone detection
Remove option to schedule last-minute meetings
Customize with your company's branding
A talent acquisition suite isn't for everyone. The ROI just isn't there unless your hiring process requires a regular flow of candidates and an on-demand pool of talent. Mid-sized to larger companies — and those that are rapidly expanding — will benefit most from this type of investment.
Additionally, companies that often scout for high-level positions can profit from a more comprehensive and customizable talent acquisition approach. Otherwise, you'll benefit more from stacking recruitment software modules for specialized capabilities like ATS (applicant tracking system), onboarding, recruitment marketing, etc.
While it's true that integration problems are possible, the benefits typically outweigh the risks. Just be sure to do all the necessary research about a software solution before committing to it.
Before upgrading to talent acquisition software, determine how much training will be required and who should be included. Then choose the dates based on your team's availability.
Don't forget to test the software before going live. This gives you a chance to work out glitches and errors before they wreak havoc on your network. These tests should be extensive because you'll want to be sure that the information is stored correctly. In other words, what do applicants see when they log in? What do recruiters see?
If you anticipate some growing pains, keep in mind that many vendors offer help with the implementation of their software, sometimes for a fee. Involving vendors in your set-up can lead to a smoother transition so you can get hiring right away.
Ty is the head of digital acquisition and content at Calendly.
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