We are beginning the process of transitioning to a new association management software tool. This creates a terrific opportunity for us to reconsider our database structure, processes, and workflows. We will look to create new efficiencies, while reducing or eliminating inefficient, duplicated, or manual work. If you’re considering a new ATS product, you may have some of the same opportunities to critically review your recruitment database. Here are a few things we’re exploring that may not be “top of mind” in your business:
Phone number fields – Our existing database does not easily accommodate international country codes. Area codes are handled separately from the phone number. This means every phone number includes three separate fields – not very easy to search or export and certainly not helpful in our global environment.
Address fields – Many databases include up to three address lines. If yours does not, this might be something to consider in your new ATS, especially if you are working with international candidates (or want to expand globally). Our current system uses two address fields, which is not sufficient for longer international address conventions.
City fields – Consider a system that does not REQUIRE a city or a state/province. Again, with a global audience, these required fields can wreak havoc with addresses. If you have a candidate in Singapore, do you have to enter Singapore as the city, the state/province, AND the country? US-centric systems may not be your best bet if you are not able to configure some of this functionality for your needs.
GDPR, Privacy and Consent – Moving to a new recruitment database gives you the perfect chance to clean up how you collect and store privacy and consent requirements. If you have been tracking this information manually (or – gulp! – not at all), a new system should help you automate the collection and tracking.
Online payments – Do you offer your clients the ability to pay electronically? If not, this is a feature to consider. Online payments can be faster and more secure than traditional forms of payment. If you’re working with clients in other countries, or need to figure out how to accept payments in multiple currencies, you may find an online solution is faster and more affordable. You will need to ensure that your system collects and stores credit card data in compliance with various laws and regulations governing data security.
Automate workflows to reduce duplicate work – If you are collecting information online from clients and candidates, make sure your recruitment database can use that data to populate other fields or streamline other processes. It doesn’t make sense to pay someone to do work that someone else has already done – and the more times a piece of data has to be manually touched, the more opportunities there are for mistakes. A good ATS partner can help you think through your processes and develop smoother workflows.
Modern ATS software should be equipped to handle most of your recruitment database needs. We are learning a lot about how to clean up and simplify our database structure; maybe some of these items will be useful in your firm, too.