Why GPS Tracking is a Must-Have for Home Health Employee Management

Why GPS Tracking is a Must-Have for Home Health Employee Management

5 minute read. Last updated April 2, 2020

U.S. healthcare professionals are demonstrating once again that they are true heroes.

Well-designed technology is important in all aspects of healthcare from patient care to research to administration.

Let’s look at the importance of mobile healthcare workforce management solutions.

Healthcare organizations should use a Human Resources Management System (HRMS) with mobile tools:

  1. Lower administrative costs
  2. Improve patient care
  3. Increase employee satisfaction
  4. Track hours for EPSLA tax credits and small business coronavirus relief

Why Workforce Management is Critical: A Summary of 4 Key Findings

1. Unemployment in the healthcare sector was 2.1% December 2019. Last month, there were 1,117,000 job openings in the healthcare industry. (Bureau of Labor Statistics)

2. Healthcare is the fastest growing industry: employment in healthcare occupations is projected to grow 14% from 2018 to 2028, adding about 1.9 million new jobs. (Bureau of Labor Statistics)

3. The DOL continues to penalize home care agencies for minimum wage and overtime pay violations. A Virginia-based home health business, for example, agreed to pay $1.2 million for failing to pay overtime to workers from 2015-2017. (Home Health Care News)

4. Registered nurses, the occupation with the third highest job growth from 2018-2028, are projected to grow from 3,059,800 to 3,431,300, an increase of 371,500 new jobs. (AMN Healthcare)

What California’s AB 5 Means for Home Health Companies

AB 5 took effect January 1, 2020. Under the law, all workers are defined as “employees” in California.

AB 5’s three part test, called the ABC Test, uses these standards. All must be applicable to classify a worker as an independent contractor. (At Home Nursing Care)

The worker must be:

  1. Free from the control and direction of the hiring entity,
  2. Performing work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business,
  3. The person is customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation or business.

What’s New In Mobile Workforce Management?

If you own a home healthcare business and have not explored the latest HRMS mobile tools, keep reading. New mobile time clocks ensure timekeeping accuracy wherever your employees are throughout the day or night.

Geofencing restricts out of area punches. Schedule enforcement restricts out-of-schedule punches.

Your supervisors will appreciate how easy it is to see what’s going on with everyone in their department. They can be set up quickly and are surprisingly affordable.

Mobile Tools for Home Health Aides

When your workers are mobile, ordinary employee timekeeping and scheduling tasks are more complex. It’s hard enough to track rotating nurse schedules in a busy LTC facility. When employees are spread across town, you need convenient mobile apps.

A home healthcare worker wakes up and hits the ground running. They check their patient roster and medication chart. “Do I have the necessary supplies for Mrs. Parker’s post-surgical needs?”  “Is Mr. Jones still on the route, or was he transferred to residential care?”

They may battle commuter traffic to get to their first appointment. When the aide arrives, he or she helps the patient get bathed and dressed, which often requires heavy lifting. The caregiver then takes the patient’s blood pressure and other vital signs, administers meds, makes breakfast, and does some housekeeping.

A Difficult Job Requires an Easy Mobile App

Keep in mind that many patients are dealing with chronic pain, restricted mobility, and the limitations of aging, so it’s understandable that they are not always happy campers. (Who can blame them?) Working as a home health aide can be rewarding. But it’s definitely not easy to care for people with physical, mental, and emotional challenges.

The last thing a mobile worker needs to deal with is difficulty logging work hours, uncertainty about scheduling, or time card hassles. Burnout due to excessive overtime is common in the industry and, like many healthcare employees who work long hours; they live for their vacations. (“I better not get shorted on my PTO!”)

GPS Tracking is a Supervisor’s Best Friend

Being a supervisor is not a walk in the park, either. What if an aide wakes up with the flu when two others are on vacation? The sick one certainly can’t risk transmitting their illness to a patient whose immune system is already compromised. How can the supervisor quickly find a replacement so that all patients are visited on schedule?

HRMS scheduling tools help you manage large teams efficiently. Patients receive the care they deserve. Effective management is also key for controlling labor expenses.

Scheduling Mobile Workers

If you are responsible for scheduling, you know it can be pretty tricky. You have to take into account, oh, maybe a hundred variables. (I may be exaggerating, but it seems like it.) When creating schedules, you have to keep track of your employee’s certifications, patient visit durations, adequate shift coverage, patient status, travel time, and route details.

Scheduling impacts patient outcomes, profitability, employee satisfaction, and compliance.

  • Mobile time clock apps capture hours and automatically tracks accruals
  • Mobile employees can punch in from their smartphone or the tablet they are already using to record patient data
  • GPS tracking records location of clock in/out
  • Geofencing restricts out-of-area punches
  • Aides can check schedules, request shift trades, receive automatic schedule updates and company announcements, approve time cards, and monitor accruals from any mobile device, any time of day
  • Supervisors have real-time, location-specific oversight with pinpoint GPS
  • Supervisors can create schedules in minutes using job codes, patient and employee locations, and hours thresholds to ensure efficiency and compliance

This user sums it up succinctly:

“By far, the biggest benefit of using TimeWorksPlus and TimeSimplicity is having visibility to ensure we have the right people, in the right places, at the right times to provide the best care possible.”

Breathe Easier Knowing You Are Protected

The healthcare industry has been under increased FLSA scrutiny in the past few years. Wise owners review their policies regularly

Pay special attention to minimum wage laws, employee classification, proper payment of overtime, Payroll Based Journal (for LTC), and ACA employee hours regulations. You may also live in a state that has added new Family Leave or predictive scheduling laws.

Did you know that employees can download a free time tracking app from the DOL website and log time? If an employee thinks they are being treated unfairly, he or she can request a DOL investigation.

Would your time and attendance records stand up to an audit?

Video Interviewing Helps Recruiters Hire Remotely While Social Distancing

Video Interviewing Helps Recruiters Hire Remotely While Social Distancing

Updated March 26, 2020

Video interviewing is helping essential businesses interview candidates during the coronavirus pandemic.

Recruiters and Job Applicants are Working Remotely

  1. Recruiters can interview candidates while working from home
  2. Applicants can talk to hiring managers while self-isolating
  3. Hiring teams can record video interviews for remote collaboration

Face-to-face interviewing is very difficult if not impossible right now. The days of in-person interaction are on hold. Video interviewing platforms are critical right now.

Video interviewing platforms create a streamlined, consistent and convenient interview process—a process that makes life easier for both applicants and hiring managers. When hiring processes have been turned upside down, anything that makes life easier for recruiters is worth its weight in gold.

So how does it work?

Hiring managers looking to invest in video interviewing platforms have two options: one-way recorded interviewing or two-way live interviewing.

One-Way Video Interviewing

Employers using the one-way video interviewing process send a list of questions and topics to the applicants ahead of the scheduled interview date. Applicants have the opportunity to read over the questions and come up with answers on their own time (like after dinner, over the weekend, or really whenever they want). Then they send back a video of themselves answering the questions. It’s simple and efficient.

  • Create text or video based questions
  • Limit think time
  • Control the number of allotted takes
  • Restrict max answer length

One-way video technology places responsibility in the hands of the applicants by giving them time to formulate answers and requiring them to submit their response on their own time. While they don’t have to make the drive to an office, they do have to set up a video recording of themselves.

Two-Way Video Interviewing

The two-way live video interview process is similar to traditional face-to-face interviews. Hiring managers who want to use this process need to contact the applicant and schedule a time that works for both parties. Applicants scheduled for a two-way video interview prepare as they would for a traditional interview process—by compiling a resume, analyzing their strengths and weaknesses and coming up with answers for possible questions.

  • Record full-length interviews
  • Brand your interviews
  • Conduct interviews directly in your web browser
  • Receive concierge support

What are the benefits of video interviewing?

There are plenty of reasons to invest in video interviewing platforms. Some of the benefits hiring managers gain from switching to video interviewing are:

  • It’s cost effective
  • It’s easier to schedule and can take place after work hours
  • Allows for consistent interview questions
  • Easy to track performance and compare applicants
  • Reveals how candidates handle technology
  • Helps hiring mangers find employees they wouldn’t have found otherwise

The right video interviewing technology saves time, energy and money. It allows hiring managers with packed schedules to find the right time for an interview—even if it’s after work hours—and gives applicants the convenience of interviewing from their own home (or wherever they feel most comfortable).

The option to choose a convenient location is one of the most valuable benefits. Video interviewing gives candidates who aren’t entirely committed to pursuing an open position the opportunity to interview—without having to worry about the inconvenience of transportation. And sometimes the best fit for an open position is the talented candidate who isn’t sure what they want or isn’t sure if they have the time to drive across town for an interview.

Tips for successful video interviewing

There are, of course, a few important things to remember when using video interviewing technology. Unreliable internet connection, difficulty performing in front of a camera, finding a quiet place for the interview—these are some potential difficulties for video interviews. But these problems are easy to avoid and hiring managers should give applicants a brief explanation of how the process works beforehand.

Hiring managers also have the choice to use video interviewing for some positions and not others. They may want to reserve video technology for applicants from out of town or those applying for remote positions. The flexibility of video interviewing gives hiring managers and applicants the opportunity to communicate and determine which option works best.

There’s no reason for employers to miss out on streamlining their interview process and securing the best talent. Companies that implement video interviewing technology may have an edge over companies relying on in-person meetings.

Getting the most out of video technology

Video interviewing technology alone is helpful. But when paired with an applicant tracking software, it’s transformative—it’s the missing piece of the hiring puzzle that completes the picture and enhances a company’s performance.

HR reps and hiring managers who use an applicant tracking software integrated with a video interview system are able to perform one-way or two-way live video interviews and compare applicants with help from other applicant tracking software features. Using these tools together allows for a seamless hiring process, from screening applications to performing interviews to onboarding.

After screening and ranking applications, hiring managers and HR departments can determine which applicants they want to interview. And after scheduling and completing the interviews, they can watch the videos, compare them to performances from other candidates and submit feedback using their applicant tracking system review features.

Use Video Interviewing to Connect With Quality Candidates Anywhere 

Companies who want the top talent need the right technology. An applicant tracking system like ApplicantStack integrated with a best-in-class video interviewing platform, gives companies the edge they need to find the right fit for open positions. By relying on video interviews, hiring managers can save time, energy, and money—all while analyzing each applicant.

ApplicantStack, the affordable, full-featured applicant tracking system trusted by over 1,500 companies to manage their candidates and workflows, integrates with Spark Hire, Inc. for video interviewing.

Spark Hire is a video interviewing platform used by more than 3,000 organizations to make better hires in a fraction of the time. For more information about Spark Hire go to Spark Hire.

Hiring During the Coronavirus Pandemic: 3 Ways to Compete With Amazon and Walmart

Hiring During the Coronavirus Pandemic: 3 Ways to Compete With Amazon and Walmart

If you are an HR director, it’s boom or bust right now when it comes to talent management. Essential businesses are in a hiring frenzy. Others, regrettably, are laying off or furloughing workers.

We hope you are in the former category.

But how do you compete for talent with Walmart, Amazon, Fed-Ex and CVS?

Let’s look at 3 ways creative HR directors are hiring during the COVID-19 crisis.

3 Ways to Hire During the Coronavirus Chaos

1. Partner With Your Customers and Vendors

Are you a talent acquisition specialist for a B2B company? Have any of your customers or vendors recently let employees go? There’s no reason you can’t follow the lead of CVS and source partners’ recently laid off employees. If you are a professional services company, you may have relationships with hundreds of organizations.

CVS is embarking on one of the most ambitious hiring drives in its history with plans to hire 50,000 full-time, part-time and temporary workers—and it has decided to tap directly into its customers’ workforces by taking on furloughed workers from the Marriott and Hilton hotel chains. The drugstore chain said it would use a “technology-enabled hiring process that includes virtual job fairs, virtual interviews and virtual job tryouts.” Market Watch

Most SMBs don’t have the resources of CVS but you can use the same techniques on a smaller scale. Talk to colleagues who have business relationships with your partners’ or customers’ recently laid off employees. These may include account managers, event planners, buyers, and supply chain managers.

These potential employees have already been vetted by companies you know and trust. They probably have a favorable view of your company. Passive recruiting is a lot easier when you are trying to source talent that is currently unemployed!

2. Host Virtual Job Fairs

Create an event using chat rooms, video conferencing, company videos, and webinars. Assign each hiring manager a presentation. Enlist your best brand ambassadors (current employees who love your company) to engage with job seekers.

A virtual job or career fair is perfect for attracting both onsite and remote workers. For telecommuting positions, you aren’t limited to job seekers in a geographic radius.

If you are looking for employees in your community, you can tailor the event to a specific demographic. If a local employer just cut workers, be straightforward about targeting their former workforce.

Who do you invite?

Use your applicant tracking system (ATS) to search for resume keywords in your talent database. Chances are, some of these people have recently been laid off. Create a job fair email template in your ATS and email an invitation to qualified candidates in your pipeline. Include a link to your registration page.

Request employee referrals. Each of your employees probably know several people out of work right now. Don’t forget to advertise on your social media sites. Ask your vendors and business partners for referrals. Talk to career counselors at schools in your community. Make the sign-up process fast and easy.

Virtual job fairs speed up hiring

For the recruiter, these events [virtual job fairs] compress the time to first engagement and ultimately the time to hire. Candidates are given the opportunity to engage with an actual recruiter from the company they are interested in on a specific day and time. That’s something you normally don’t have that early in the process. (SHRM)

3. Offer Flexible Schedules

Schools are closed. People are caring for sick family members. Workers need flexible schedules as much as they need steady jobs.

There’s never been a better time to offer flexible and non-traditional schedules—for both onsite, mobile and at-home employees.

Flexible schedules allow smaller companies to compete

Flexible schedules aren’t just an attractive perk for job seekers. They help SMBs be more competitive in multiple ways.

  • Flexible scheduling reduces labor costs
  • Reduced absenteeism increases productivity
  • Engaged employees drive business growth
  • Improved work/life balance helps retain experienced employees

What’s the easiest way to provide flexible work schedules? Cloud-based employee scheduling software is your answer for flex scheduling.

Employee scheduling software lets you create standard schedules in seconds—and flexible schedules in minutes. You create templates for each department, team, or location. You can also create templates for specific shifts or seasons. When the base schedules are in place, it’s easy to drag and drop employees into shifts.

Flexible schedules reduce healthcare employee burnout

Employee burnout is an issue for many industries, especially healthcare. And especially now. When employees have more control of their shifts, they are less likely to suffer psychological stress. Workers with improved mental health are more effective and make fewer mistakes. There’s never been a greater demand for experienced healthcare employees. If you don’t offer flexible schedules, your workforce can easily find positions at competing healthcare employers.

A Refresher Course on Best Practices for Hiring

1. Use an Applicant Tracking System

An applicant tracking system (ATS) allows you to reach far more candidates and track them through the hiring process with smart automation.

The software manages postings in multiple venues, receives and filters applications, parses resumes, and store applications for future openings. Since preliminary screening is automated, it narrows down applicants to a small pool of promising candidates. An ATS is a smart investment for any small business owner who is serious about competing in today’s job market.

An applicant tracking system doesn’t just make your life easier. It is an important tool for attracting top talent and onboarding them when they are hired.

Did you know that desirable candidates will probably find a job within two weeks? If your application system takes weeks, you are losing quality employees to companies with modern, efficient systems. Job seekers have plenty of options. The best applicants will move on if your recruiting system is antiquated.

2. Rethink Educational Requirements

Many employers have discovered that real-world experience can be more valuable than a degree. In a tight job market, you can’t always get college grads. Consider candidates with tech certifications and applicable work history.

3. Fine Tune Job Descriptions

Enlist your managers and employees to write accurate, detailed job descriptions. These don’t need to sound like they were written by a professional headhunter.

Include the salary range. Many applicants don’t waste their time applying when they don’t know what the job pays. Save yourself time by weeding out candidates who are looking for a higher salary.

When creating job descriptions, lessen the emphasis on qualifications the candidate must possess. Consider what your company can do for the employee. Candidates who respond to a benefits-first approach are often the most ambitious and competent.

You can create, store, and update job descriptions with recruiting software. Centralized access makes it easy for teams to collaborate.

4. Shorten Your Applications

Only the most desperate candidates will struggle through a lengthy application. Carefully-designed applications contain only the essentials. Recruiting software has templates to get you started.

5. Define Your Hiring Criteria

Answer the following questions: 1. Who must sign off on the hire? 2. What specific qualifications are necessary? 3. What is the deadline for making a decision?

6. Treat Applicants Like Customers

We’ve all had bad experiences job hunting. These include automated “we received your resume” emails (or worse) no notification that the company even got your application.

Be clear about the timeline. Keep candidates informed during the entire process. Your hiring methods reflect on your company. Respect your applicants as if they were your customers.

7. Formalize Your Interview Process

Create an interview script and make sure managers follow it. Ensure that it meets anti-discrimination requirements. Workforce management recruiting software helps you create and manage interview scripts. Update the questions as job roles evolve.

Good interviewers don’t dominate the conversation. They let the candidate do most of the talking. Pay close attention to the questions the candidate asks. They will yield valuable insight into the job seeker’s priorities and personality.

8. Monitor Employee Reviews

Have you read the online reviews from current and former employees? Smart employers take them seriously and make changes when necessary. Evaluations by actual employees carry far more weight than your website. Good job candidates do their research. Negative reviews hurt your hiring chances. You can’t remove reviews on most sites, but you can respond to them and describe steps you’ve taken to address the complaints.

Why 2020 Hiring is Hopeless Without an Applicant Tracking System

Why 2020 Hiring is Hopeless Without an Applicant Tracking System

5 minute read. Updated March 1, 2020.

What is an Applicant Tracking System (ATS)?

An applicant tracking systems is a type of HR software that automates the hiring and onboarding process

7 Sober Hiring Stats You Can’t Ignore

  1. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, there are 670,000 more job openings than there are unemployed potential workers.
  2. About 7 in 10 companies reported talent shortages in 2019, the highest level ever. That’s more than three times higher than a decade ago. (Manpower Group)
  3. Top candidates are on the job market only 10 days only before accepting a job offer.
  4. 94% of companies with recruiting software report that it’s improved the hiring process.
  5. 35% of small organizations use ATS.
  6. Many companies are using recruitment texting. Some studies put text open rates above 90%! Compare that with around 45% for emails.
  7. 64% of applicants would share negative application experiences with friends and family and 27% would actively discourage others from applying.

11 Undeniable Benefits of Applicant Tracking Systems

1. An Applicant Tracking System Saves You Lots of Money

Applicant tracking systems provide an impressive ROI. How much? A small company can save up to $10,000 using an ATS.

Companies using applicant tracking system reap the rewards. New-hire turnover is 40% less on average, and they can fill vacancies 20% more quickly.

New Hires Generate Revenue More Quickly

ATS’ help you fill positions faster. This shortens the time it takes for the new hire to generate revenue. ATS with onboarding tools further shorten the time-to-productivity.

2. Hire Top Performing Candidates Before Your Competition

An ATS help you identify top candidates and present an offer before the applicant is hired by a competitor. These high-demand employees drive productivity and innovation.

3. Track Hundreds of Resumes With Ease

When it comes to administration, ATS automation is truly impressive. Systems can handle hundreds (even thousands!) of applications, resumes, and other workflows.

Not only do you save on the cost of labor for the hiring team, but you also free up their time.

They can use that time on improving hiring strategies. Improved hiring strategies can then help your business grow even faster

With the strategic use of an ATS, you can become the budget hero in your company.

4. An ATS Creates a Dynamite First Impression

During the recruitment process, your goal is to attract top people to your company. You aren’t just recruiting; you’re marketing. Shockingly, 69% of unemployed people wouldn’t take a job if the company had a bad reputation—they would rather stay unemployed!

Applicant tracking systems help you put your best foot forward. Automate communication with candidates, so no one falls through the cracks. Get your job listed on prestigious job boards across the internet. Brand your application portal so it’s unique to your company. This is how you communicate a professional image of your company to job seekers.

5. Your Competitors Are Using An ATS

If you haven’t implemented an ATS, take note. 98% of Fortune 500 companies and at least 66% of large companies use it. The adoption rate for small companies is lower, but growing quickly. Last year, it was estimated that 35% of small organizations use ATS.

Keep in mind that you are also competing with talent sourcing agencies. The ATS adoption rate for professional recruiters is nearly 100%.

6. Recruitment Texting is a Must in 2020

Many companies are using recruiting texting in their hiring operations. The open rates for marketing texts are legendary. Some studies put the text open rate above 90%! Compare that with around 45% for emails.

Consider this: if a person has set up texting notifications, they can see a preview without opening the message. If the text is short, they can probably see the whole message in the notification window.

If you aren’t engaging with your candidates through texting, you are falling behind. ATS texting helps you leverage the power of many candidates’ preferred method of communication.

7. Quickly Narrow Down The Application Pool

First, you create a job posting. Your ATS posts it to multiple online sites (of your choosing). The applications start coming in. The system collects and organizes them in a central database. It creates a profile for each applicant.

As you know, job seekers format their resumes in a variety of ways. The ATS extracts the information and organizes it in the same format for each candidate profile. In the profile template, there is a field for each relevant piece of data.

For example, there is a field for each degree earned, each previous job title, and each skill.

This type of organization gives you searching superpowers. You can analyze and compare by work experience, education, or previous employers. Or job titles, skills, or demographic variables.

Let’s talk about resume filtering. The software uses keywords from the job posting. It matches the keywords with those found in the resumes. Consider how long it takes you to read one resume. An ATS can parse thousands of resumes in seconds.

This process weeds out the candidates who don’t have the necessary qualifications and it delivers a pool of qualified candidates before you need to read a single resume!

8. Screening Questions Help You Find Better Candidates

When you’re reviewing resumes, you’re going to choose quality over quantity every time. No one wants to waste time going through dozens of unqualified applicants. An applicant tracking system allows you to add screening questions to your application to ensure applicants meet basic qualifications like education level or years of experience. Some applicant tracking systems let you create scoring rules that weigh certain questions more heavily, so better applicants automatically rise in your review queue.

9. ATS’ Can Post To Multiple Online Job Boards

With an ATS, your job posting gets maximum online exposure. Most will post to LinkedIn, Indeed, ZipRecruiter, Glassdoor, CareerBuilder, and Monster (just to name a few) with one click. While you’re at it, post it to your social media sites and careers page.

You create the job posting in the ATS, and the software takes care of the posting. This is a huge timesaver for busy hiring managers.

10. Applicant Tracking Systems Improve Collaboration

You are more likely to find high quality candidates if multiple stakeholders can weigh in.

But if expanding the hiring team slows down the process, the top candidates will lose interest. They will seek out firms that move faster.

ATS databases enable effective collaboration. Each decision maker can enter notes and applicant ratings. (The rating system is customizable, by the way.) Mobile apps allow recruiters to access the ATS from any internet-enabled device. Some systems include video interviews that team members can watch at their convenience.

11. Applicant Tracking Systems Help You Comply With Labor Laws

To say that recruitment compliance is complicated is an understatement.

The laws are always in flux and they vary by location, industry, and business size. Small companies have fewer resources to ensure that processes are compliant.

ATS help you comply with regulations related to hiring. Vendors update SaaS systems to stay current with hiring regulations.

In addition, ATS generate reports to protect you in case of a legal challenge.

For example, suppose a rejected candidate alleges discrimination. Don’t worry. Your ATS has the documentation to validate your legal hiring criteria.

Who uses Applicant Tracking Software?

If you receive applications, you need an applicant tracking system. ATS software clients include:

  • Independent recruiters
  • Staffing agencies
  • Executive search firms
  • Large enterprises
  • Small and medium-sized businesses (SMB)

Typically, the applicant tracking software is managed by the human resources department or a hiring manager.

We’ve touched on a few ATS functions. Let’s take a deeper dive into the inner workings of applicant tracking systems.

What Does an Applicant Tracking System Do?

ATS systems perform a wide variety of functions to make the recruiting and onboarding process easier for managers as well as new employees. Any applicant tracking software should perform the following five functions.

Post Jobs

What is an Applicant Tracking System researching and applying for jobs online is nearly universalThere are incredible people out there just waiting to fill your positions – but if they never see the job posting, they won’t apply. A 2015 Pew Research study found that “researching and applying for jobs online is nearly universal” for job applicants. When selecting an ATS software, look for one that gives you access to critical job posting boards like Monster and Indeed.

In 2015, almost 60% of younger job seekers used their smartphones to search for job openings, and half of that population used a smartphone to fill out a job application. Those numbers are only expected to increase. Any of the ATS systems you look into should be mobile-friendly, creating job listings that allow applicants to submit documents via mobile phone and to bookmark jobs for later.

As any amateur job seeker will tell you, networking is the best way to find a job. Your applicant tracking system needs to sync with the most popular social networks – LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. You don’t have to worry about unqualified applicants when you use applicant tracking software because they’ll be weeded out. You just want to get your posting in front of as many eyeballs as possible.

Track

Inc. reports that for every job posting, companies receive an average of 250 applications. Larger companies will be flooded with applications for each job they offer, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. ATS software should allow you to quickly and painlessly sift through applicants, bringing the best-qualified people to your attention and automatically rejecting unqualified candidates.

Most ATS systems allow you to create pre-screening questionnaires. Applicants are required to answer certain questions, and ‘wrong’ responses will remove them from the candidate pool (while automatically sending a thoughtfully worded e-mail thanking them for the application). Some ATS systems go a step further, assigning value points to each question so you can sort candidates by score.

The best applicant tracking software integrates and automates resume parsing, resume storing, and reference checking. If it doesn’t have to be done by a human, why not automate it? The HR department or hiring manager shouldn’t have to sort through dozens of easily eliminated candidates. An applicant tracking system performs the menial tasks of analyzing dozens of candidates, so the hiring manager can focus on the few who really stand out from the crowd.

Communicate

Communication is key in every aspect of life, and that includes the hiring process. The way you communicate with a potential new hire says a lot about your company’s values, and knowing where they stand in the application process is essential for applicants.

ATS systems let you automatically update candidates with news about the job posting. Give stragglers a gentle nudge to complete an application, or let someone know that you’d love to conduct an interview. Past applicants will appreciate knowing if the job has been filled, and may opt to receive job updates from your company in the future.

Once you’ve narrowed down your applicant pool, applicant tracking software eliminates the back-and-forth of trying to schedule an interview by creating a calendar with open slots for preliminary phone or in-person interviews. Out-of-state jobs may require video interviews so you can analyze behavioral tendencies; some kinds of applicant training software offer this integration as part of the package. The hiring manager enters the times he or she is available, and the interviewee selects the option that works best. No more complicated weeks-long games of email tag to find a time that works for everyone!

Applicants want to know how they are doing throughout the process. One study shows that the key pain points are right after submitting the application, when 49% would like feedback; if not selected for an interview, when 39% would like feedback; and after the interview if they weren’t selected, when 43% would like feedback. Each of these is an opportunity for the HR department or hiring manager to show that the company truly cares about its potential employees. ATS software makes this easy to do.

Hire

Once you’ve found the best candidates, the applicant tracking system can streamlines the hiring process, particularly if you’re using collaborative hiring. Many jobs require input from multiple decision-makers. The ATS software consolidates reviews and reports from every stakeholder, so hiring managers can take in everyone’s opinions at a glance.

Candidates can be scored and rated separately, and a good applicant tracking software includes collaborative tools and reports so everyone is on the same page. Want a background screening? Your applicant tracking system should be able to provide that, too. After you’ve extended an offer to your prospective employee, many ATS systems offer additional abilities so you can onboard the new hire.

Onboard

The application process may be over, but onboarding is just beginning. Your new hire has documents to fill out, resources to review, and forms to e-sign. ATS software should have an onboarding portal where you can consolidate documents. Your new hire can sign in, review and securely sign necessary paperwork, and use the portal as a resource to check back on onboarding documentation and company guidelines whenever he or she chooses.

Your applicant tracking system may even sync with payroll, so you can quickly get your new hire into the system and properly compensated. Tasks can be created, edited, and managed for both the new hire and the hiring manager. And all of your documentation is secure and accessible in cloud storage.

The right ATS is your hiring manager’s best friend. Try ApplicantStack for free today. You’ll wonder how you ever did without it.

How to Overcome the Top 3 Challenges in Tech Recruiting

How to Overcome the Top 3 Challenges in Tech Recruiting

Did you know there are more than 1 million unfilled tech jobs in the U.S.?

That might come as a shock to you, especially considering more teens and young adults are being pushed toward STEM fields to increase their odds of getting hired out of college. How can a field that’s growing so quickly struggle to fill so many vital roles?

The answer is that the changing landscape of tech makes it difficult for both companies and employees to keep up. This puts recruiters in an especially tough position as they’re tasked with finding unicorn candidates who check all the right boxes.

Understanding the challenge of tech recruiting

Recruiting is challenging enough as it is, but there’s something uniquely difficult about tech recruiting. If you’re recruiting in tech for the first time your usual strategies won’t work. You’ll need to adopt a faster timeline, open your mind to more unusual candidates, and more. Let’s dive into some common tech recruiting struggles and how you can overcome them.

1. There aren’t enough qualified candidates

As a recruiter, you’re probably already aware that this is a candidate favored market. The global talent pool is shrinking with record low unemployment rates. There are now fewer candidates with the skills required for technical positions and this gap is even wider if you’re looking to recruit for the tech industry. That means your recruiting strategy will need to change.

The tech industry is already short 1.1 million workers and by 2030 that number could be as large as 4.3 million. Where do you find qualified candidates when the number of skilled workers seeking new jobs keeps shrinking? The answer isn’t orthodox, but it does work.

Stop looking in college classrooms

Tech giant Apple has already taken the first step in sourcing new talent. Instead of insisting on a four-year degree in a related field, Apple announced they are no longer requiring a college education for job applicants. This has opened up the talent pool to self-taught software developers, people who have taken coding boot camps, and more.

That’s not to say that you should ignore candidates with a college degree, but rather stop ignoring those who don’t. When you limit your scope for who can and can’t be qualified, you limit your potential talent pool.

Look for transferable skills

You might be wondering how you’re supposed to judge candidates’ qualifications without a degree and the answer is by looking at their skills. And not just their specific technical skills, you’ll want to look at their transferable skills as well.

Transferable skills are any skills a person has acquired throughout their life, career, or hobbies that can be applied to different situations. As an employer, finding a job candidate that doesn’t fit the exact job spec can actually be a blessing in disguise. These job candidates can be taught on the job skills needed once they start while bringing unique perspectives and viewpoints to your company.

The runway time for teaching a new employee how to use new software is much shorter than you think. It’s time to start thinking of skills as assets rather than requirements. Don’t count someone out because they worked in customer success for twenty years and are looking to make a career change. Instead, see how their unique skill set might benefit your team.

2. Direct competition from larger companies

A few names probably come to mind when you think of tech giants: Google. Facebook. Apple.

While these juggernauts might not be your competition in business, they are direct competitors for global tech talent. Tech employees have the in-demand skills that these big companies are looking for and given the chance to work for a world-renowned company, most candidates will take the chance.

You’ll need a special strategy to out-recruit the likes of Google or Apple. The good news is that there are a few tricks you can use to seal the deal.

Rely on your employee ambassadors

When it comes to recruiting tech talent, your current employees are an untapped resource. Not only do they understand what it takes to be successful at your company, but studies show that 84% of people trust recommendations from friends or family over any other form of marketing. That means there’s a greater chance of success when you encourage your employees to refer people in their network or share jobs on social media.

Looking to up the ante? Offering your employees a bonus for referring potential candidates. These employee referral programs incentivize your staff to help you recruit new talent while filling the recruitment pipeline with fresh candidates.

Many companies take this a step further by using employee referral software to optimize the process. These solutions allow you to track which employees referred candidates, monitor their place in the recruitment pipeline, and post jobs to internal job boards. Streamlining your applicant tracking process will help you find qualified tech candidates faster. All of the perks with less work!

Offer incentives other than money

There’s a lot of money in tech. If you’re just starting out as a company you might not have the budget to throw at candidates the same way a big three tech giant might. Thankfully, studies show that employees are looking for more than just a paycheck. Flexible working hours, growth opportunities, and better work-life balance are among some of the more sought after perks.

Offering competitive pay is still important, but throwing in the option to work remotely or an extra week of paid vacation could sway them to sign with your company. Remember, there’s always something else you can offer a top tier candidate to seal the deal

3. Candidates expect an accelerated hiring timeline

Are you moving fast enough for top tier candidates? Unless your candidate life cycle is two weeks or less, you might be too slow. Research shows that more than 50% of candidates believe the hiring process should take between one and two weeks, while the actual time to hire hovers around 38 days.

That same study shows that 89% of potential candidates drop out of the recruitment process due to a prolonged timeline. Putting candidates on ice or waiting too long in-between communications is an invitation for them to ditch your company.

And don’t make the mistake of assuming you’ll just lose one candidate when websites like Glassdoor allow candidates to talk about their terrible recruiting experiences. An overly complicated or slow recruiting timeline is bad news for your hiring prospects.

Use technology to speed along the process

Your recruitment process is your first chance to impress high-value job candidates. If you’re using an outdated applicant tracking software (ATS) that slows down the recruitment process, there’s a good chance qualified candidates will just give up. Investing in a state of the art system that automates resume screening and manages all recruiting communications will save you and the job candidate time.

If you want to compete with the titans of your industry, ATS is not an option. There’s been a shift in the last decade in HR departments around the world. Applicant tracking software is no longer optional, it’s necessary to stay competitive. Over 98% of Fortune 500 companies, including Microsoft and Tesla, use ATS in their recruitment efforts. You need the right software to keep up with companies pulling from the same talent pool.

Eliminate the stuff that doesn’t matter

If you had to eliminate 80% of your recruitment process, what would you keep? It’s a tough question but it’s one you need to consider. Job candidates are tired of jumping through arbitrary hoops in the hopes of catching your attention.

Ask yourself if you really need to subject a candidate to three in-person interviews with four different team leads or if the same thing can be streamlined with a video conferencing tool. Think about whether or not you need someone to fill about a 40-question personality quiz before uploading their resume. Are these checkpoints truly helpful in deciding on a candidate or are they arbitrary roadblocks?

You might think tasks like these weed out candidates who don’t have the drive or the work ethic but you’d be wrong. How you treat your potential candidates is a direct look into how you treat your employees.

Let’s get technical

Despite all we’ve said in this article, there isn’t a right way to recruit tech talent. You’ll need to take the tips mentioned and put your own spin on them. It’s going to take some trial and error but if you stick to it, you’ll be a tech recruiting titan in no time.

Inexpensive Hiring Software Solves Tiny Firms’ Hiring Challenges

Inexpensive Hiring Software Solves Tiny Firms’ Hiring Challenges

Tiny companies weren’t able to grow their workforces in 2019.

Are you struggling to keep your small business staffed?

Hiring is tough for companies of all sizes, but the smallest companies are having the hardest time.

Overall, U.S. firms with fewer than 20 employees didn’t add workers in 2019.

The Hiring Standstill for the Smallest U.S. Businesses: 5 Key Findings

  1. Last year, the number of employees in total at tiny U.S. companies (fewer than 20 employees) didn’t increase. (Wall Street Journal)
  2. Compare that with the fact that organizations with 500+ employees increased their workforces by 2.3%.
  3. 2019 was the first year since 2010 that tiny companies didn’t add workers to their payroll.
  4. Tiny firms aren’t tiny when it comes to their impact on the U.S. labor force. There are more than 5 million U.S. firms with fewer than 20 employees. They make up 89 percent of all U.S. companies. (Small Business Administration).
  5. Businesses with less than 20 workers employ 16.8 percent of the U.S. labor force.

Applicant tracking systems enable small businesses to grow

There are common misconceptions among small business owners and entrepreneurs that keep some from even looking into software solutions. One common misconception is that ATS solutions are too expensive for an owner-operator. Another that we hear a lot is that applicant tracking solutions are just for companies that add hundreds of employees every year. —Nonsense.

The truth is that hiring software is just as important for tiny firms. Possibly even more important.

7 reasons ATS’ are a must-have for tiny businesses and start-ups

  1. The business owner has to do all the hiring PLUS everything else
  2. They don’t have the name recognition of larger companies
  3. They need to have a super-fast hiring process to compete
  4. They need to automate manual hiring operations to process more applicants
  5. They need to automatically filter out unqualified applicants before spending time on them
  6. They need a way to incorporate best practices
  7. They need to provide an outstanding candidate experience to attract quality talent

How MRV Banks solved their hiring problems with ApplicantStack

Let’s look at a case study of a small Missouri bank that solved their staffing problems with ApplicantStack. ApplicantStack is an affordable applicant tracking and hiring solution that helps you find and hire the best candidate faster and with less effort. ApplicantStack is available as a standalone ATS solution from SwipeClock. ApplicantStack is also available as part of the WorkforceHUB HRMS.

Though MRV Banks is now slightly larger than ‘tiny’, they have the same challenges faced by smaller companies. (They were tiny just a few years ago.)

In the first half of 2019, the company grew from 35 to 44 employees across five locations. Finding and hiring the right employee for each open position is a key success factor for MRV Banks. With steady growth and continuous demand, hiring became difficult and time-consuming. MRV Banks turned to ApplicantStack to solve three critical issues.

We needed to reach more well-qualified applicants, get fewer unqualified applicants, and reduce the administrative time spent per job opening, says Lydia Sumner, MRV Banks Director of Human Resources.

Let’s break that down. MRV Banks needed to:

  1. Reach more well-qualified candidates
  2. Review fewer unqualified candidates
  3. Reduce the administrative time per job opening

ApplicantStack makes it easy to create and post job descriptions to popular job boards, social media and internal sites. This helps hiring managers reach a higher volume of qualified candidates in a shorter period of time. Applicants are automatically scored according to rules set by MRV Banks, helping them screen candidates before they are considered for an interview.

Knockout questions are included in their questionnaire to eliminate candidates based on specific requirements of MRV Banks. The candidate view in ApplicantStack makes it easy to see which candidates are qualified for the position before any effort is spent on reviews.

With ApplicantStack, we now easily post to multiple job boards and automatically prescreen applicants based on a required application and questionnaire. The most qualified applicants are easy to see in the ApplicantStack dashboard. We also get fewer unqualified applicants because they self-select out during the application process.

The company posted several jobs and hired a qualified Loan Processor within the first month using ApplicantStack.

EEOC Compliance

As the company approaches 50 employees it becomes increasingly important to document hiring history and protocol. ApplicantStack maintains a record of all applications, applicant history and communications.

ApplicantStack applies the same prescreening rules to all applicants and the scoring is transparent to auditors, proving our commitment to fair hiring and equal opportunity.

With ApplicantStack, employers create applications and questionnaires that all applicants complete. Each questionnaire has rules associated that assign a score to answers, making it easy to review at a glance. ApplicantStack also streamlines interview scheduling, interview feedback, and selection. All interactions during the hiring process are preserved for auditing and review.

HR Management Connection

ApplicantStack is part of a larger HR ecosystem at MRV Banks, including HUB and TimeWorksPlus. This integrated system provides an employee portal for new hire onboarding, timekeeping, paystubs, company directory, and employee engagement.

As an administrator, Sumner has single sign-on access to all functions of the system streamlining HR workflows and saving time and effort.

These tools help us find and keep the best talent while improving our efficiency. That combination fuels our growth and supports our commitment to delivering premium banking services.

ApplicantStack is affordable for the smallest businesses

Want to grow your business? Try ApplicantStack for free for 15 days. You won’t be tiny for long.

And it may be the most important decision you make this year.