ATS vs CRM: Which one do organizations need?

Recruiting might seem to be pretty easy and straightforward but it is definitely not so. It is not just mere calls and conducting interviews- it is understanding every individual’s true potential, maintaining a huge database, and maintaining an effective relationship with candidates. Here is where tools like Applicant Tracking Software or Candidate Relationship Management come into play. However, it leads to a debate: ATS vs CRM – do you really need both, or do you need only one? If you need only one, is it ATS or CRM? 

Well, on a considerable level, this depends on the requirements of the organization. However, for the effective management of the entire recruitment process, a CRM should definitely be paired with an ATS and vice versa.

Before anything else, let’s dive deep into what ATS and CRM are individually:

Benefits of ATS for Recruiting

An ATS is a tool used to optimize the hiring process and reduce the manual labor of HR professionals. It is a repository for creating/posting job openings, managing applications, and getting through the entire hiring process step by step. It is a great tool to make teams more productive.

Benefits of CRM for Recruiting

A candidate relationship management tool, ,particularly a custom CRM, helps you to build and maintain relationships with all active and passive candidates for future job openings.

The benefits of CRM include helping talent acquisition professionals to build their own community of talent and sending regular updates to them. This allows them to already have a pool of talent to search from whenever there is a new opening.

ATS vs CRM: The functioning of the two systems

Both of these tools work at different stages of the hiring process. While the ATS is required right from the very beginning of the hiring process, the Recruitment CRM is used in the later half of the same. 

CRM is relatively new in terms of usage within the organization. Whereas the importance of the Applicant Tracking System has been recognized for quite a while now. It is recommended for all companies- be it big or small.

An ATS is required for a higher volume of hiring. With more and more candidates, data management and tracking the entire process of hiring.

Similarities between both the tools

How does not optimizing your ATS with a CRM make a difference?

  1. You are not able to evaluate the relationship between the candidates and the recruiter.
  2. You don’t get a satisfactory Return on Investment.
  3. A few positions do not get closed for months.
  4. You only get administrative tasks done.

How does not optimizing your CRM with an ATS make a difference?

  1. You are not able to effectively track your end to end recruitment process.
  2. Management of applications is more difficult.
  3. Your job distribution is limited.
  4. Administrative tasks like scheduling interviews, and setting up emails and meetings are not done easily.

Hence, it is best to integrate both tools together.

It seems pretty obvious now that both the tools add great value when they are combined together. Using both the CRM and ATS will cover the hiring process right from the beginning and continue even after the position is closed (that is, the relationship management with the candidates). 

With both the tools in hand, post job openings in different platforms along with the candidate pool that you have built, track and manage job applications effectively, respond to candidates effectively, and maintain good relationships with them.

Hence, in the entire debate of ATS vs CRM: which one is better? the truth is that both of them are the most beneficial only when they are combined together. And not when you have to pick only a single tool. For the best return on investment, it is essential that you go for both the tools and use them efficiently.


Why is CRM important in recruitment?

CRM helps you manage relationships with passive and active candidates. You can build your own talent pool for regular communication and job openings. It optimizes your hiring process to a great extent.

Who should use an ATS?

Companies of all sizes should use an ATS in order to enhance the hiring process and the candidate experience, and save the time and efforts you invest in the same. SpringRecruit is a free-forever ATS solution for all your hiring needs.

It is used by 98% of Fortune 500 companies. Hence, the size of your company does not matter. An ATS will be beneficial to your hiring process.

Is ATS the same as CRM?

An Applicant Tracking System is used right from the beginning of the hiring process. It can be used for tracking and managing applications, posting job openings on different platforms, and more. A Candidate Relationship Management system maintains a talent pool, posts job openings within it, and builds relationships with new and existing candidates.

Dhristi Shah

I am an Associate Content Marketer at Springworks. I love writing new content that relates to and helps you all (aka my readers).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Virtual Office Softwares For Remote Collaboration And Fun
Previous Story

4 Best Virtual Office Software For Remote Collaboration And Fun In 2024 [In-Depth Comparison]

How BetterQA is building a work-happy culture with Trivia
Next Story

“Building a culture inside Slack has never been this effective” - How an Indonesian marketing agency is succeeding with its people-first approach.

Latest from Springworks

Life at Springworks: A Day In The Life Of A QA Engineer