2020 Editor’s NOTE — We have the updated version for 2020 here:

Top Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS Software) in 2020

Enjoy! — Rob


Ongig first began reporting on top applicant tracking systems in September 2014 and after 30,000 people read one post on it, we decided to update it for 2016. Our goal for this one is that 100,000 of you read it!

A few things you’ll find in the update:

  • A list of the top ATS’s being used by companies we know as of March 2016.
  • The names of applicant tracking systems that are growing the highest in market share.
  • A list of the basic categories of applicant tracking systems.
  • A few ATS trends we expect to continue.
  • Some extra links to help you with applicant tracking software solutions.

Note on why we do this:  Ongig is on a mission to help clients create the best job descriptions in the world and the ATS is what generates the text of most JDs. At the same time, our team interacts with 1,000’s of companies per year and we ask what ATS they use and then compile the data for you. We can’t tell who’s got the best ATS for you but we we hope the data/content below is at least a helpful resource. 


Top Applicant Tracking Systems

Applicant Tracking System Market Share Pie Chart 2

Note on Criteria: Ongig’s Top Applicant Tracking Systems list is based on 3,302 employers and which ATS we identified they are using. These 3,302 employers are based all around the world, though they are mostly headquartered in the U.S.

The complete list of the top 70 applicant tracking systems couldn’t fit in the pie chart above so below is the full list.

ATSMarket Share
Kenexa – Brassring7.56%
PeopleFluent (Formerly PeopleClick)2.52%
Newton Software0.78%
ATS OnDemand0.21%
Cornerstone OnDemand0.18%
Bird Dog0.11%
JJ Keller0.04%


Check out the The Top Applicant Tracking Systems Annual Report (2017) for many additional pie charts and growth charts!

The Fastest Growing Applicant Tracking Systems

With the benefit of 2 sets of data (2014 versus 2016) we’re now able to share some data on who has grown the fastest in terms of market share.

It’s worth noting that a few of these ATS’s (such as Workday, Lever and Greenhouse) were just making their presence know in 2014 and have now become major players.

Applicant Tracking System Market Share Increase Graph 2


In case you had to squint too much to read the chart above, below is Ongig’s list of the ATS’s we found to be growing the fastest.

ATS% Increase
ATS OnDemand209.47%
Cornerstone OnDemand157.89%
Ultipro (UltimateHCM)120.38%
CATS ATS106.31%
Bird Dog54.74%


Note: This is calculated by comparing the change in their marketshare from 2014 to present. 

Here’s a quick primer on different types of applicant tracking software:

Applicant Tracking Systems for Compliance

If you need to be compliant with the OFCCP, EEOC and other regulatory groups, you will likely be using compliance-oriented ATS’s to allow you to most easily pull the types of reports needed to comply. The top ATS’s for compliance are Taleo (now owned by Oracle), followed by IBM’s Kenexa-Brassring, iCims, ADP and SAP/SuccessFactors.

ATS’s for Startups

There are a ton of applicant tracking systems for startups. A nice list/infographic of the top ATS’s used by 100 startups comes from HireNurture below. It’s from August 2014 so it’s missing some newer ATS’s such as SmartRecruiters. But it’s stukk the best representation of ATS’s used by startups that we know of.

Applicant tracking systems for startups

Free Applicant Tracking Systems

There are applicant tracking systems you can try for free at low volume, such as Jobscore, SmartRecruiters, RecruiterBox and ZOHO Recruit.

The free ATS’s typically start charging you once you go beyond a number of jobs or users or after a trial period.

Using 2 Applicant Tracking Systems at Once

Some companies need to use 2 applicant tracking systems. One reason is if they have hourly and salaried employees. Buffalo Wild Wings, for example, uses Ultipro for salaried and SnagaJob for hourly — the salaried workers include Restaraunt Managers (5 at each location) and corporate; while the hourly workers include the restaurant’s full team of hourly folks).

Uber is another example: they need to use iCims for their employees while they use a homegrown talent community capture for their drivers (who are contractors).

Some companies also inherit a second ATS through a merger or acquisition (Rock-Tenn and Mead West Vaco merged to form Westrock and and each had their own ATS’s (Successfactors and Brassring) which they then had to use in combination.

Using Payroll (or Other) Software for Your Applicant Tracking System

Some employers looking to save money might find that their payroll providers, such as ADP and Paycom, might throw in ATS functionality at discounts to win your business.

We saw one company, Wiredrive, using Ziprecruiter (which is more known for job board distribution) as its Applicant Tracking System (indeed, ZipRecruiter mentions itself as an ATS alternative on its site).

Homegrown ATS’s

A number (11%) of companies we’ve talked to use their own homegrown applicant tracking software instead of buying something off the shelf. Employers using homegrown ATS’s include major tech companies such as Apple, Google, Netflix and Facebook.

I’ve heard stories about Google’s homegrown ATS — which last I heard is a combination of their homegrown “G-hire” combined with Salesforce.com. One former Apple recruiter tells me Apple’s homegrown applicant tracking system is “weird” in how dead- simple it is.

Other companies, including LionsGate and the restaurant Wingstop, still use an email address-based applicant trackng system  — we categorize email-based systems as homegrown ATS’s. An email-based application capture is also used by some Fortune 500 companies for smaller geographic regions (sometimes to save money if the ATS charges based on # of regions/languages).

Note: If you are interested more in Homegrown ATS’s, check out 5 Huge Employers That Use Homegrown Applicant Tracking Systems.

And 9% of the Wealthfront 100 startups (in the infographic above) still use a homegrown, email-based ATS.

A Few ATS Trends We Expect to See by Our Next Update

I don’t have a crystal ball, but if I was a betting man I’d expect that a few trends will continue by this time next year. They are

  • Taleo — They should continue to be the most commonly used ATS (especially by large businesses), though their market share will decline based on how many other ATS’s are fighting for their business.
  • Jobvite — They should continue to be the top ATS market-share-wise in the tech world, though the race is tightening (due mostly to Greenhouse and Lever who are pushing hard to win Jobvite’s current customers).
  • Greenhouse — They will continue to make strides in winning tech clients and will also go  “upstream” and make a dent in Fortune 500-type clients.
  • Workday — They will continue to win big clients (Mastercard, Dell, Levi Strauss, etc.) but will also make inroads in the tech/SMB (small & medium-sized) by going “downstream” after smaller employers currently served by ATS’s like Jobvite, Glassdoor and Lever.  Workday Recruiting (which includes ATS functionality) is written in the same line of code as Workday HCM (Human Capital Management) so many Workday HCM customers will have the incentive to add the ATS functionality (since it can tightly integrate with compensation, benefits, talent management, etc.).

Other Resources on Applicant Tracking Systems

Here are a few other lists of top ATS’s:

…and here are some Ratings and Reviews sites of applicant tracking systems:

And here’s a great resource on ATS Pricing: Applicant Tracking System Pricing — ATS: How Much do they Cost?

Ping us for your opinion on your ATS or any of these trends!

We know that Ongig’s list of ATS solutions is missing many great vendors –If you own or use an ATS that is not mentioned above please add a comment below about it and include the uniqueness of it (e.g. what type of customer is it best for, does it serve particular geographies, etc. — and if you can name any clients of yours we can include it in our next top ATS report).



by in Recruiting Software

41 Responses to “The Top 70 Applicant Tracking Systems (2016)”

  1. durable

    Clearly the focus of the survey dictated the results, but any serious discussion of ATS systems should also include at least an honorable mention to the Staffing, Perm Placement, RPO side of the business which has different needs and thus often different systems. Ref: Bullhorn, PCRecruiter, Brightmove, etc..

    • Rob Kelly

      Thanks, Ivan. Do you know of any top applicant tracking software systems used in Ireland? If you do, please comment on it here. Thanks!

  2. Hagi

    Thanks for the detailed research Rob! Would like to add a vendor that I’m working for: Recruitee (https://recruitee.com)

    Recruitee is one of the lesser-known ATS newcomers from Europe. But a strong contender nevertheless 😉

    Recruitee’s customers are fast-growing SMB’s around the world: US, UK, the Netherlands, Germany, Turkey, Singapore, Canada, Iran, and many others. Users love Recruitee for its cutting-edge technology, efficient and easy-to-use workflow.

    Recruitee actually ranks #9 on your listed “70 ATS’s by GetApp”: https://www.getapp.com/hr-employee-management-software/applicant-tracking/

    RecruitingTools.com named Recruitee the “Best Applicant Tracking System of 2015”: http://recruitingtools.com/the-best-applicant-tracking-system-software-review-recruitee/

    Inc.com praised Recruitee as one of the 5 apps that are almost as good as a whole HR department: http://www.inc.com/minda-zetlin/5-apps-that-are-almost-as-good-as-a-whole-hr-department.html

    Tim Sackett, HR pro, has a great time reviewing Recruitee: http://timsackett.com/2016/03/29/20470/

    And last but not least, Recruitee receives much love from users on Twitter! https://twitter.com/recruiteeHR/timelines/675235475280543746

  3. Jake Frazer

    These look like ATS’s for in-house recruiting…what are the best systems for boutique Executive Search firms that want to integrate outside 3rd party providers for assessments, video interviewing, automated reference checks, etc.? We have sold our last company where we were executives and are now starting an ER firm focused on overseas contracting where talent is dispersed, multi-cultural, and expensive. So we want to add a virtual assessment center to our offering to customers. Ideas on ATS’s for this situation?

    • Rob Kelly

      You are correct, Jake — this Top ATS’s article is focused on in-house recruiting teams. We have heard Bullhorn, Crelate.com, PC Recruiter, CATS ATS, BrightMove, TargetRecruit and Talent Browser mentioned as ATS’s for search firms. I hope that helps you.

      • trisys

        And TriSys of course – desktop, web, mobile and cloud – used as both a recruitment agency CRM and an ATS for corporates.

    • Rob Kelly

      Great question, Michael. I used to perceive Avature as a CRM but it appears they have added ATS and Onboarding modules since then. This is a definite trend: recruitment marketing systems adding ATS functionality and ATS’s adding marketing.

  4. Philise

    Is there any way you could show a price per user vs. features that you get in each ATS? We are using Bullhorn with Back Office…very expensive, and is limited in features that we need, for goal setting and tracking and opportunity/sales lead conversions…etc. Are there other products in the market that are similar for both the ATS functionality andn Back Office/Onboarding integration, but less expensive?

  5. Jeff Hallam

    Thank you for taking the time and effort to put this together, Rob. You’ve done an excellent job.

    My company, ExactHire (www.exacthire.com), provides an ATS geared specifically to SMB’s in the United States and Canada. Our platform gets very positive client feedback for its usability and price point, while offering a robust set of features (requisition management, job board postings, social sharing, etc.) often offered only by more expensive providers.

    We also have a new hire onboarding tool that may be added to our ATS, or may be used in a stand-alone environment.

    Thank you again for making this list and the related data available — this type of sharing helps our entire industry and is much appreciated!

  6. CJP

    Great list Rob! One minor correction, it’s “SelecTrak” not “Selctrak”. Thanks!

  7. Dave Williams

    Hi Rob, thanks for this, it makes for very interesting reading. As you point out, this is quite a US-centric list. Do you have similar data focused on the UK and the European market? Many thanks, Dave

    • Rob Kelly

      Please share with the community which types of clients the CEIAPL ATS is best for. Who’s your target market (the more specific the better)? Thanks.

  8. Daniel Mccartney

    Hi Rob,

    Amazing article along with great effort fetching top ATS software list!!

    I would like to suggest iSmartRecruit which allows ATS software for recruiters, staffing agencies and HR corporates. Also a multilingual recruiting solution with much happier and satisfied clients, best reviewed and ranked by capterra and software advice.

    iSmartRecruit target audience is small to medium size recruitment, HR and staffing agencies. It Features:

    Import & Parse Resume Dashboard Email & SMS integration
    Full text search Reports Automatic Reminders & Alerts
    End-to-End Candidate Information Analytics Team work & Collaboration
    Job Management Quick Access Google Calendar integration
    Interview Data Import Integration with Career Website
    Task Management Attendance Social Media Integration & Job Board
    Prospect Management Mobile recruiting Outlook integration
    Client Management Extensive Customization Chrome Browser Extension

    Demo available on request:


  9. Leela Srinivasan

    It’s good to have a data source like this – I hope you continue to update it frequently as the market is ever-changing!
    One point of clarification: you mention Netflix is on its own homegrown system. That was true, but they migrated onto Lever last year.

  10. Stanislav Rambousek

    Hi guys, I would like to ask you for a help to choose ATS for my company as Taleo (current ATS) doesnt meet the expectations at all. I have a lot of reasons to hate Taleo (I will share if somebody is interested), but this is not the topic.

    For me (as recruitment professional being in the business for many years) ATS should primarily help you to track your candidates within the pipeline. As we all know, recruiter commonly has many candidates (me usually 30 – 50) in the process and ATS should be able to:

    – offer you the opportunity to see only your candidates among the others in the system added by your colleagues (for me the most important topic)
    – be able to send you notification in case there is candidate in one status for a long time & send you notification after defined period (e.g. we have 1 week to finish the technical task, so ATS should remind you when 1 week ran out from sending the task)
    – to have a private field to store confidential information (not all ATS users are allowed to see e.g. salary expectations while recruiter needs to store it somewhere)
    – to have API that allows you to update your ads / posted JDs directly from your tracking system
    – to be able set up different templates (e.g. rejection)
    – to have one-click-add candidate add-on (when you find candidate on the well known social media like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, the ATS gives you opportunity upload him to system by clicking a single button – I know there exists many 3rd party ways how to do it, but it’s nice when ATS has it)
    – to have sophisticated report system from management

    My company has 5 branches (I would like to implement it to all of them), currently appx 10 recruiters and steadily appx 40 open job slots (company is IT web development house and we have 800 employees worldwide). I was used to work with tailored ATS when each candidate has so called “candidates owner – one of the recruiter”, who was is charge of the selection process and in case candidate fail and was assigned to another position (e.g. FrontEnd to UI/UX designer) which another recruiter was in charge of, you can easily change candidates ownership. Based on this feature, I could easily see only mine candidate, in what process they are and if there is any action needed from my side.

    Also, based on this feature you were able to have really nice reports.

    Unfortunately, non of the corporate ATS has this. Taleo is complete failure and I can understand it’s success only because it’s chosen usually by management, who doesnt have any recruitment knowledge (or it’s adjustable on development level, but we dont have required sources to do it). It offers you a lot of useless gimix thinkgs that recruiter never uses, but it the same time doesnt provide you basic information to ease your pipeline. Recruitee (ATS) in quite new system, we are currently evaluating. It has quite nice features (posting adds, one click candidates upload to system…), but again I miss “candidates ownership”. To be able to see only your candidates, you can put something to tags and than search by a tags to list only your candidates, but when you want to ask the system how many candidates you interviewed this week (get offer), it wont tell you. But the biggest disappointment was SmartRecruiter. Very similar to Recruitee, possibility to set only the owner of the position (not of the candidate), but for 50k EUR annualy (in comparison with 4k for Recruitee) it’s ridiculous.

    To be clear, budget is not the first filter, but it needs to make sense. In my case, would someone be so nice a recommend me some contemporary ATS that matches this criteria?

    God bless for any help!

    • Rob Kelly

      Stanislav, thanks for sharing what the best applicant tracking system looks like for you. I especially appreciate the honest thoughts on Taleo as well as the pricing for Recruitee and SmartRecruiter — that will be useful to a bunch of people trying to figure out what the best ATS is for them.

    • Ivana Cvejic


      Thanks for the great comments, it’s always good to hear other perspectives on the ATS products. Renhead is a new product that specifically tailors to professional recruitment firms such as yours and has all of the features you listed in your post. In addition, it’s a new technology with the abililty to customize each platform, with no extra charge. It’s also very reasonably priced, on a per month licensing model and all cloud based. Definitely worth checking out https://renhead.com

  11. Mark Nezvisky

    Hello guys, for those who use CATS and Zoho Recruit we have a tool that helps you instantly see on Linkedin which candidates have already been added to Zoho or CATS. We ran statistics and it saves up to 2 hours per day on your manual search. Here’s a brief video explaining how it works https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLeuqJ2Xqmk. You can get the extension at http://www.linkmatch.net. We are in the process of official integration with iCIMS, Greenhouse, PCRecruiter, Vincere and Recruit BPM.

  12. Dinda Wijaya

    Hi everyone, thanks for the awesome blog! It’s a good writeup on great ATS to use in 2016. Another great ATS is Rekruta, an affordable applicant tracking system that helps companies to find, manage, and hire the best talents using a set of tools and automation. They currently have limited time offer USD 29/month for full features ATS, unlimited job posting. You can sign up directly at https://www.rekruta.com/demo-signup for details. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/083bb00b2a3dd13a292248fe374a2cc6a9b3a4044eb862f6c617f88bb938c7ec.png

  13. CC

    I am a single operation, just starting out, please recommend an ATS that may work well for a small firm, a system that has features similar to the needs identified by Rambousek. Also, has anyone had experience with Renhead?

  14. Jacob Gordon

    Diya Obeid, JobDiva’s Founder and CEO, will address how to avoid pitfalls when selecting the right ATS at Staffing Industry Analysts Executive Forum North America in San Diego, CA in February. His address will take place at 10 AM on Wednesday, February 15th.

    “Fake news” is in the news, and ATS products are not immune. Attend this session to gain perspective on how to assess the accuracy of research evaluating ATS products. A pitfall to avoid in selecting an ATS product is relying on biased, misleading information that purports to be objective. Diya Obeid, JobDiva’s Founder and CEO, will explain how self-described technology research companies such as Gartner, Inc., present research that is not necessarily what it appears to be. Mr. Obeid’s insights will help you to separate truth from fiction and avoid being misled.

    “In my decades of experience deploying disruptive technology, I have often encountered questionable information and tactics that do more to halt progress in the ATS field rather than advance it,” said Mr. Obeid. “Successful organizations are the ones that see through the noise.”

    Mr. Obeid has been a pioneer in the deployment of staffing solutions for over 30 years. Under Mr. Obeid’s leadership, JobDiva has redefined the standard for cutting-edge technology and innovation. Today, JobDiva is the leading global Applicant Tracking System and Talent Management Solution, serving more than 21,000 global staffing professionals who support the Fortune 500. With decades of experience managing the tribulations of deploying disruptive solutions in the B2B space, Mr. Obeid is a definitive source of knowledge on the challenges facing industry professionals.

  15. claudia

    Hi Rob Kelly,
    Great Article, worth a good read! Have been using https://ismartrecruit.com Applicant Tracking System for recruiting and hiring which our firm very helpful and is a complete robust system and provides multilingual staffing software. I would also like to recommend iSmartRecruit to be added on your list.
    https://ismartrecruit.com/request-demo for more details:


  16. Serge de Klerk

    This is indeed a helpful post for users or other recruitment professionals who are looking for an ATS. However, I do miss Connexys Recruiting Software in this list. Connexys (www.connexys.com) is market leader in The Netherlands and growing really fast in Europe. We’ve built an ATS on the Salesforce platform which will give recruiters all the tools they need to have the best (CRM) recruitment process on the market.

  17. Neha Shah

    Hey Rob! Amazing article. I’m a user of JobScore and I absolutely love it! It automates so much of the hiring process, making my life that much easier. JobScore extracts contact information, employment and education history from resumes. The extracted information is presented in easy-to-scan profiles allowing me to take quick actions.

    JobScore also makes it easy to ask inbound job applicants the right questions. You can also apply filters and sort candidates based on how they answer questions. Looking for more? You can impress candidates by building a candidate pipeline that allows you to post to job boards, boost employee referrals, share on social networks, and manage search firms.

    JobScore has been so helpful throughout all of my hiring needs, I’d break it all down on this post, but that would opt for a long read. For more information check out their website: https://www.jobscore.com/

    • Rob Kelly

      Thanks for the kind words, Neha. Dan and the Jobscore team have done wonderful things in the ATS space. Glad to hear you agree. Best, +r


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