ATS Checklist for Startups, Small Businesses & SMEs

Hiring Success Glossary

Table of Contents

How to choose the best ATS for a Startup

When choosing an ATS (Applicant Tracking System) for your startup, picking one with your industry in mind is crucial to its success. The best applicant tracking systems automate the hiring process to increase hiring productivity.  If your startup is in the eCommerce or delivery services industry, you’ll want to choose one with easy integration to social media, as you could source talent from these sites. As you scale your business, you’ll also need an ATS that can grow with you, allowing you to reach new business and attendant hiring goals with ease.  Take Sana Commerce for example. They partnered with SmartRecruiters to reinvent their talent acquisition strategy. Not only were they able to exceed their business objectives, but they also doubled their hiring velocity and improved their overall hiring success. 
ATS Quiz Demo Link

Challenges for a 'hyper growth' company

Creating an airtight recruiting system is challenging enough in normal periods, let alone periods of hyper growth. Many companies think their existing system can handle the pressure, only to end up with their in-house recruiting team pushed to the brink.  As your company grows, so do the needs and qualifications of each role. If your roles are changing faster than your job descriptions, you’ll be plagued with turnover when initial hires can’t rise to the occasion.  SmartRecruiters provides the optimal recruiting solutions for high growth companies that need to quickly scale their hiring processes by standardizing and automating repeated recruiting tasks through our high volume recruiting technology.

How to choose the best ATS for a Small Business

With the current world situation, many small businesses are dealing with economic challenges, such as inflation. In 2021, 71% of small-business owners reported at least a 20% increase in costs for supplies and services.   With this in mind, you need to save money where you can. With a modern ATS, you can make your recruiting process less of a hassle, saving valuable time and money through increased efficiency.  If your company is hiring for less than 10 roles, SmartStart is a great option. This free version of the enterprise talent acquisition suite by SmartRecruiters makes it easy for small businesses to find top tier talent. Businesses will enjoy SmartStart’s flexible platform that equips you with everything you need to attract, select and hire outstanding applicants.

How to choose the best ATS for a SME

If your small-medium enterprise needs to choose a new ATS to reach its full potential, you’re probably familiar with the struggles of demonstrating the benefits of upgrading to a new recruiting software to internal stakeholders. It’s not enough to simply state that an ATS will make candidates enjoy the hiring process. You’ll need to display clear metrics that show where the business will reap benefits.  When building your business case for choosing a new ATS, focus on how a new ATS will provide value in these three areas:
  • Technology 
  • Sourcing 
  • People 
As you move through the aforementioned areas, show how a new ATS will benefit the company, highlighting short and long term savings via your hiring budget. Show a potential timeline for the integration, and emphasize how a new ATS will enhance the candidate experience. 


To acquire your new ATS, you’ll need to submit a request for proposal. To make this process easier, utilize the SmartRecruiters RFP Excel Template here

ATS Checklist

Download our Modern ATS Evaluation Checklist to understand the 7 features to look for when evaluating a modern ATS solution. A truly modern recruiting platform uses advanced technology to enable recruiters to make more effective and data-driven hiring decisions, but finding the best one can be difficult, so our checklist is designed to guide your procurement process for a new ATS.
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