2014 Applicant Tracking System Predictions: A focus on interface design, speed and mobility
2014 should prove to a very active year in the applicant tracking software industry. While there may not be quite as much vendor consolidation as in years past, the lack of M&A activity will be made up for with the introduction of new technologies that will dramatically improve the user experience for recruiters, executives and hiring managers alike. For the past couple of years, the ATS industry has focused on the development of social recruiting tools but now that they are nearly ubiquitous, progressive ATS vendors will refocus on core functionality like interface design, speed and mobility.
Until very recently, a major challenge facing developers of applicant tracking systems (and business apps in general) is to create platforms that perform well on multiple devices, monitors and browsers. For an applicant tracking system, now a mission critical platform for nearly every small and medium-sized employer, one layout of data and controls isn’t sufficient anymore given the variety of screen variations used to access recruiting software. Scrolling, zooming, pinching and squinting are not viable options for end users anymore. Simply put, viewing an applicant tracking system on a mobile device, will no longer be acceptable.
2014 will usher in more ATS products with “responsive” design: one product that automatically responds to the environment in which it is being used. From 4 to 7-inch phone screens, 7 to 10-inch tablet screens, 11 to 27-inch monitors screens, and 40+ inch flat panel displays in conference rooms, new future friendly applicant tracking systems will understand what screen size is being used to access the product. These “future friendly” recruiting systems will automatically provide context and will appropriately juxtapose the right data being displayed, with the right controls, on any device, all the time. The usability, user satisfaction and user adoption benefits created by responsive design and the resulting mobility and speed will be immeasurable. 2014 is going to be an exciting year for this industry and for buyers of applicant tracking software.