5 Traits That Distinguish High-Performing TA Teams

Author Mike Marschke Date Jan 03 2021

The new year provides us as Talent teams the opportunity to reflect on our process and identify what is working, and what isn’t working. 

Heading into 2021, it’s difficult to predict what the recruiting landscape is going to look like. With threats of shutdowns, layoffs, and more of the unknown, talent teams need to understand how to optimize their recruiting processes.

Regardless of what this year brings, failing to attract and retain top talent remains a top business pain point. The traits listed below were derived from a recent survey conducted by HR.com, where Human Resources professionals were surveyed to understand what the key elements of high performing applicant tracking systems are. 

  1. Their ATS has better functionality

High-performing talent acquisition teams get higher levels of performance from their ATS across the board. Over 77% of high-performing teams say their ATS is good at customizing the application process, compared to 34% of lower-performing teams. High-performing teams also say their ATS offers candidates a high-quality experience at a much higher rate than lower-performing teams—77% to just 36%.

Not every ATS is built the same. Understanding the optimal functionality and workflow for your recruiting is crucial. For companies performing a high-volume of recruitment across multiple locations, automation and integrations become crucial features.

  1. They actually utilize their ATS

Yes, ATS in high-performing teams are more likely to perform every task at a higher level than in lower-performing teams. 76% of higher-performing TA firms say that they utilize “all or most” of the capabilities of their ATS, compared to just 48% of lower-performing teams. 

It is a fair assumption that those utilizing more of the capabilities of their ATS would see better overall performance.

  1. They are more likely to be satisfied with their ATS

High-performing TA firms are far more likely to be satisfied or very satisfied with their ATS. Since these organizations are also far more likely to utilize more capabilities of their ATS, they most likely have a deeper understanding of the capabilities and how they can benefit their organizational recruiting needs. 

Once you have identified all the capabilities of your (hopefully) effective ATS, life becomes a whole lot easier. The best ATS are able to automate the monotonous tasks involved with recruiting, so you can spend your time where it’s truly needed: evaluating top candidates. 

  1. They provide a better candidate experience

More than two-thirds of respondents from high-performing TA firms (66%) say their organization provides a good or excellent candidate experience. In contrast, just 24% of the lower-performing TA firms say the same thing. 

There is a difference between saying you have a good candidate experience and actually providing a good candidate experience, which leads us into our final trait. 

  1. They are better at gauging the candidate experience

One key factor as to why top talent teams provide a better candidate experience is because they bother to measure it. It’s not a difficult concept, but I’d contend the number of companies that attempt to accurately measure candidate experience is below 50%.

Among those that do measure employee experience, high-performing TA firms are considerably more likely to use candidate surveys and obtain written feedback from candidates. In contrast, 53% of lower-performing firms have no way to gauge the candidate experience.


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About the Author

Director, Strategic Programs

Mike Marschke

Mike Marschke is Fountain's Director of Product who has a passion for innovation and optimizing talent acquisition strategies, enhancing candidate experiences, and driving organizational growth.