It may have a new nickname like “The Great Resignation,” “The Great Reshuffle,” or something else by the time you’re reading this. But it isn’t a new problem. In behavioral health — and more broadly in health care — hiring managers have been dealing with a talent shortage for years. It’s not easy recruiting and retaining top talent for technical and professional roles, and it seems there’s no relief on the horizon. Fortunately, technology that combines data, organization, and analysis can help.
In this article, we’ll discuss some of the ways you can use an applicant tracking system (ATS) to improve the candidate experience and optimize recruiting efficiency while supporting your HR team in making the best hiring decisions possible.
What Is an Applicant Tracking System?
For job seekers, it’s no longer necessary to drop off cover letters, fill out tedious job applications, or wait by the phone. Today, job hunting is mostly a digital experience. Candidates upload their resume directly to the employer’s website where it is scanned, parsed, and organized into a searchable database.
From small business owners to Fortune 500 corporations, businesses of all sizes use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to manage candidates throughout the hiring process. In fact, a report published by Harvard Business School found that in the United States, 75% of employers use some type of applicant tracking program to help them quickly sort through resumes, CVs, and employment applications.
ATS functionality and scope varies widely between products and vendors. A basic HR software may only provide database management, while a full-service vendor like ContinuumCloud provides a complete suite of cloud-based practice management software systems. This includes an EHR platform, a patient engagement app, and an HCM system that includes the best applicant tracking system on the market for behavioral health and human services providers.
Using ATS to Support the Entire Recruitment Process
Employers begin the recruitment process by planning. As hiring managers formulate candidate profiles and job descriptions, they conceptualize what skills and characteristics will be needed to fill each position. At this stage, an applicant tracking system’s Position Control feature is most useful.
The next phase is candidate sourcing (talent search). Human resource managers participate in outreach activities that may include posting job openings both internally (on the company’s careers page) and externally to industry job boards, career sites, and through third-party recruitment agencies or headhunters. During this stage, you’d use the ATS software’s automation feature to strategically post job listings across multiple sites at once.
Next, the recruiting process shifts to screening. With the right ATS, you can scan, parse, and organize data into a searchable database. ATS filters are also useful for drilling down into the data at a granular level to discover the most qualified candidates.
With a short list of the best candidates, you can begin the interviewing process. Use the ATS to schedule interviews, send automated emails, and conduct screenings. This portion of the recruitment process can seem slow and drawn out to excited candidates. As such, you can use text messaging to provide updates and keep talent engaged.
Once a hiring decision has been made, use the ATS to make things official. With ContinuumCloud’s HCM, users can sign offer letters and contracts entirely online.
Benefits of Using an ATS for Behavioral Health
To succeed in a competitive market, every business must attract, hire, and maximize top talent. Due to a shortage of qualified behavioral health employees and a high demand for services, smart managers are turning to HR technology to find the best talent. However, this is only a small portion of the features, functions, and benefits the software offers.
A key component of ContinuumCloud's robust human capital management (HCM) system is its applicant tracking feature. This HCM was intentionally designed for behavioral health and human services organizations to help manage the entire employee lifecycle, with recruiting management and more.
Here’s how our system is uniquely positioned to help your organization stand out from the pack and ensure a more streamlined process for candidates.
Reduce attrition, boost morale, and improve job satisfaction
A new study found that around 47% of health care workers planned to exit their careers within the next three years. Another 51% of respondents complained that not having enough time with their patients was a problem. When you consider the realities of staffing shortages, higher rates of clinician burnout, and unsafe practices, it’s no wonder that such a large percentage of health care providers are dissatisfied in their career.
Fortunately, you can address some of these issues with the Position Control dashboard, where you can view and manage staffing needs based on open positions. Position Control provides an interactive and actionable organizational chart that allows you to see any gaps in your workforce.
Provide great employee experiences
Experienced behavioral health professionals are in high demand. Today’s job seekers are likely to reject a job offer when they perceive a poor hiring experience.
In addition to competitive pay, benefits, and other perks, recruiters should leverage technology to facilitate an enjoyable hiring process.
In particular, it’s important for millennial workers to have a low-touch experience when it comes to hiring. For instance, communication via text messaging is preferred over all other methods. Moreover, having a slow response time or poor engagement during interview scheduling can lead to losing a top candidate’s interest.
Using ContinuumCloud’s HCM solution, you can see every touchpoint in the application process so no detail is missed and users can progress at their own pace when possible. Its streamlined processes and better workforce visibility are designed to improve the employee experience.
Streamline recruitment and onboarding
Many businesses face challenges when it comes to hiring and onboarding new employees. An insufficient onboarding experience can leave a new hire feeling insecure and frustrated, while a lengthy onboarding process can place even more stress on already stretched-thin resources.
Hiring managers need data-driven tools to help them predict and prioritize staffing needs, quickly identify potential candidates, and stagger training and onboarding for maximum efficiency.
The applicant tracking system within ContinuumCloud’s HCM is a gold mine when it comes to finding, hiring, and retaining the best candidates and bringing them onboard more efficiently.
You can use the Position Control feature to simplify recruiting and onboarding in a couple of ways:
- When there are new or upcoming vacancies, use the applicant tracking system to suggest prior applicants. You can sort based on attributes such as career level, credentials, and salary range.
- You can also use the HCM to predict additional staffing needs for onboarding new hires or schedule training for shifts when you have the most coverage.
Workflow automation and collaboration
A stellar candidate experience also relies heavily on the streamlining of internal processes and workflows. Making your behavioral health system stand out to in-demand candidates hinges on respecting their time and effort.
Automate workflows or bulk changes to common tasks within the applicant tracking system. Collaborate with your team by creating, scheduling, or sending invites and updates to teammates using push notifications.
Here’s an example: Hiring decisions are reviewed and approved by upper management through the approval-to-hire workflow. As soon as the right candidate is hired, they receive a preconfigured offer letter with pre-populated fields for their position details, credentials requirements, and salary. Upon acceptance and signature, the workflow is complete.
Improve recruiter efficiency by extending their reach
Recruitment teams can match job requisitions with the most appropriate job-posting sites and social media channels using ContinuumCloud's full-featured applicant tracking system.
Furthermore, using an ATS prioritizes internal job boards that require fewer clicks to apply. This is a big incentive from a candidate’s perspective. By removing barriers for interested candidates, you improve the likelihood they will complete actions such as applying or uploading a CV.
Our applicant tracking software seamlessly integrates with many free and paid job boards including well-known career sites like Zip Recruiter, Monster, and Indeed, plus business sites such as LinkedIn, and social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Optimized for ease of use, you can post jobs across all job boards with one click.
Choose the Applicant Tracking System Made for Behavioral Health
As the workforce continues to change and demand for behavioral health increases, digital tools like applicant tracking systems will be a must to differentiate one company from the next. Choosing the best ATS can significantly impact your recruiting efforts. For behavioral health organizations, there’s perhaps no better software than ContinuumCloud’s HCM.
ContinuumCloud provides behavioral health and human services agencies with an end-to-end HCM solution that includes recruiting management, onboarding, HR management, benefits administration, payroll processing, and Position Control.
Robust and innovative, ContinuumCloud’s applicant tracking system works by helping you reach your talent acquisition goals. Our ATS software uses resume parsing to organize and store them in a searchable database.
Both candidates and recruiters can benefit from ContinuumCloud. You can improve your hiring team’s efficiency with built-in automations including a wide range of processes and sourcing workflows. Use built-in messaging functions to engage with your recruiting team members and top candidates. Schedule automated posts to announce job openings, or use bulk messaging features to send reminders.
If you’re interested in learning how ContinuumCloud can help you reach your staffing goals, connect with us today.