Do you wonder, is an applicant tracking system (ATS) worth it, or is paper applications the better route for driver hiring? As a survey company, we have received feedback from many trucking companies in recent months on how they are handling driver hiring.   

Let us start by talking about an online PDF or a paper driver application. On the surface, it seems a PDF or handing a driver a paper application is just easier. No logins or username, no wifi needed, no resending for corrections. We can count on it working because the hirers and the drivers are familiar with it. Being comfortable with a process is not a bad thing, right?

Sometimes being comfortable is a bad thing. Let us talk about how bringing new processes and technology into your company is in your best interest, not just the trucking companies. Trying out current trends in technology is how you as a professional stay relevant professionally. Growing our skills is critical in todays job market.

Look at COVID and how it has changed our shopping habits; Amazon has never been busier. Those who were slow to start shopping online have now adopted online shopping and will continue to use it after COVID. Why is that? Because now they have learned a new skill set, online shopping, it is a tool they can use for a lifetime.

Shying away from technology and learning something new will create a dated skill set for any recruiter or hiring manager. Companies and people who have always used paper applications need to embrace new technology and solutions. Regardless of your career, keeping skills updated and relevant is how you stay employed and find new opportunities. Everyone should be looking to streamline and improve the companies processes, but also looking out for our own future and skillset.  

The fundamentals processes in an ATS are the same, DriverReach, TenStreet, CDLsuite; once you learn one, you will feel more comfortable with all. As an ATS user, you can add this skill to your resume, and you become more marketable and create more career opportunities.

We know how you personally will benefit from this new product, but how does the trucking company benefit from an ATS? My first thought is merely the processing of an application. All ATS work well on smartphones, DriverReach is mobile-first, CDLsuite, and TenStreet has a smartphone App. I read that 67% of us are using our smartphones for business. Hiring anyone in today’s world, your company requires a mobile friendly job application. Many companies lose suitable applications because of their dated job application process. Professional drivers want to work for a professional company, your companies job application is one of the first impressions a driver gets of your company. How do you want them to perceive you?

Another great feature of an ATS, which is especially important if you are a large company, is lead management of potential drivers. DriverReach is my favorite for this. They have a drip campaign feature for lead management. The drip campaign can be used by recruiting HR, even while the driver is employed for general messaging. This feature creates automated emails and text messages that you can schedule to send to the driver. You can set it up and leave it. This feature is great for; a 30-day follow-up to check in with the newly hired driver. Drivers are most likely to quit a job in the first 30 days; if you can keep them engaged and help them with any areas of concern, you can lower turnover. 

Compliance and DOT audits are two other reasons for ATS versus paper. An ATS requires drivers to complete a full DOT application minimizing compliance issues. You immediately have a more compliant application with minimal if any follow up needed. Regarding DOT audits (aka compliance reviews), most are being done virtually now—another result of COVID. The FMCSA was already doing some of the auditing remotely, but now it is all remote. Imagine having to scan in and email all those documents that they want to audit from your DQ file, drug and alcohol file, and training file. Ugh, that does not sound fun. DriverReach’s ATS you can select files, print pdf, and email them. DriverReach’s audit feature allows auditors have access to only specific information within your ATS. A significant time-saver.

There are many reasons to adopt new technology for your driver application process, but who really needs an ATS? Everyone, no, this is how we recommend you decide if you need an ATS:

Keep in mind an ATS can be your internal ATS. It does not need to be an outside provider.

  1. Do you have driver turnover? An ATS can track and help you manage driver leads, saving time if you have high driver turnover.
  2. Are you trying to hire younger drivers? They will want to use their smartphone to apply.
  3. Does your recruiter have multiple roles in the company? Does the hiring person have time constraints and numerous obligations? Save them time and frustration by having one place to manage everything. ATS is perfect if the recruiter is also the safety director.
  4. Do you have hundreds of drivers and/or multiple recruiters? Create access to all data for your recruiters. The recruiting team can now see what is going on with other recruiters and or applicants.
  5. What image are you trying to portray? A professional one? Use an ATS or at least an online application through your website that is mobile-first. Your professional image makes a difference to applicants. Make it a professional one. 

Finding an ATS can be challenging, but it is worth it. There are some great products in the marketplace. We are happy to connect you via our “Contact Us” at the bottom of our home page on our website or check out some options in our “Directory “or you can click on link to “DriverReach” to check out their solution today.

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