2020 Editor’s NOTE — We have the updated version for 2020 here:
Enjoy! — Rob
A common question I get asked is:
“What are the top applicant tracking systems I should consider using?”
So, every year the Ongig team and I find the top ATS’s used by employers actively hiring…and we publish the details.
We fine-tune this list of top applicant tracking systems based on community feedback — 117,000 people read the last 3 reports and 100+ commented. Thank you!
First, a bit on the criteria. Ongig can’t survey every employer on which ATS they use. Instead, we focus on the employers doing the most hiring as measured by number of open job descriptions.
This year’s report tracks 4,218 top hirers and the ATS they use. The employers we track range from a large company like Amazon with 13,000+ open positions to a small startup currently filling just a handful of roles. It turns out they use a total of 109 ATS’s among them.
The first pie chart below shows the ATS market share of the top 20 ATS’s.
Top ATS Market Share
Note: You’ll note “Homegrown” listed as an ATS in the pie chart and table. That is not the name of an ATS. Instead, a homegrown ATS is ATS software built by the employer themselves. Many top employers (including Google, Facebook, Apple, Starwood and Wyndham) have used a homegrown-built ATS at some time.
Complete List of Top Applicant Tracking Systems
Here’s the full list of applicant tracking systems (109 in all) by market share.
|Rank||ATS||ATS Market Share|
|6||IBM Kenexa BrassRing||4.77%|
|9||ADP (apply2jobs, CandidateCare, WorkForceNow)||3.84%|
|14||CareerBuilder (TalentStream & jobs.net)||1.73%|
|15||Oracle Other (iRecruitment, HRMS, PeopleSoft, etc.)||1.28%|
|16||Peoplefluent (formerly Peopleclick)||1.16%|
|17||Cornerstone OnDemand (CSOD)||1.14%|
|18||Symphony Talent (Findly, HRapply.com)||1.04%|
|32||Ceridian (includes RecruitingCenter.net)||0.47%|
|45||Talent Reef (JobAppNetwork)||0.24%|
|59||The Applicant Manager||0.09%|
|59||Bullhorn (includes Maxhire.net)||0.09%|
|64||Unicorn HRO (iCON)||0.07%|
|64||HR Locker (Hirelocker)||0.07%|
|78||Interview Exchange (Hirezon)||0.02%|
|78||CRI (Candidate Resources)||0.02%|
|78||Micron Systems (Lawcruit)||0.02%|
|78||MyRecruiter (Rullion Solutions)||0.02%|
Note: The applicant tracking system list above has 109 ATS’s in it and ends on row 78 because a number of ATS’s tie for market share.
Note: this is not ATS market share by revenue
The ATS market share #s we provide in this report are for installations of ATS’s and not ATS market share by revenue. For example, we show Greenhouse edging out iCIMS in terms of ATS market share usage in this report yet iCIMS likely has much higher revenue than Greenhouse (because iCIMS has been around much longer and has a higher concentration of large clients).
ATS Market Share by Hiring Volume
If you want to get more granular, we break down the top applicant tracking systems by hiring volume.
Afterall, the type of ATS you need for a new startup versus one you need to hire 50,000 people this year is very different.
We use these 5 tiers of hiring volume to keep things simple:
- 1,000+ job openings
- 500 – 999 job openings
- 100 – 499 job openings
- 25 – 99 job openings
- 0 – 24 job openings
That way, you can look at how many open positions you have and figure out the top ATS systems used by other employers hiring a similar volume.
Here are the charts of the top applicant tracking systems by hiring volume:
Top 10 Applicant Tracking Systems (1,000+ Jobs)
Top 10 Applicant Tracking Systems (500-999 Jobs)
Top 10 Applicant Tracking Systems(100-499 Jobs)
Top 10 Applicant Tracking Systems (25-99 Jobs)
Top 10 Applicant Tracking Systems (<25 Jobs)
The Top Applicant Tracking Systems by Growth
The pie charts above show a snapshot in time of ATS market share.
But the ATS market share is changing fast so we must also look at growth.
We use 3 different growth metrics with the time period of 2018 compared to 2017:
- Growth in # of new ATS clients added — These are the top ATS’s by number of clients added among the top 4,000 hirers we track. For instance, Greenhouse Software has added 140 new clients in the last 12 months among the top 4,000 hirers that we track. However, they added many more clients that we do not track.
- % Growth of new ATS clients — This group includes top ATS’s by % growth in new clients (again, among the Top 4,000 hirers we track) over the last year.
- Growth in ATS market share points — This group includes the top ATS’s by change in market share for an ATS in 2018 versus 2017. For example, if an ATS went from 2% market share in 2017 to 6% market share in 2018, the gain would be 4%.
Here are the top ATS systems by growth (2018 versus 2017):
Top Applicant Tracking Systems by # of New Client Additions
Top Applicant Tracking Systems by % Growth in Clients
Top Applicant Tracking Systems by Gain in Market Share
The Top 5 Applicant Tracking Systems that Might be Under Your Radar
These 5 ATS’s grew fast and they didn’t make the charts above only because we had low sample sizes for them.
- The Applicant Manager
Other ATS systems growing fast in adoption include Balancetrace, Paycom, Birddog and AcquireTM.
Top ATS Migrations
We noticed a number of major employers migrating from one ATS to another. The most common ATS systems that top employers migrate to are Greenhouse Software, Workday, Taleo and iCIMS.
Here are examples of the top ATS software being migrated to along with the previous ATS the employer used:
Migrations to Greenhouse Software
- AdRoll (from Jobvite)
- AQR (from Workday)
- Altisource Portfolio Solutions (from Taleo)
- BeyondTrust (from Taleo)
- Domo (from Taleo
- Evernote (from Jobvite)
- Github (from Lever)
- Hootsuite (from iCIMS)
- LivePerson (from Taleo)
- Major League Baseball (from Taleo)
- Roku (from Jobvite)
- Survey Monkey (from Jobvite)
- Taco Bell (from Kenexa-Brassring)
- Zuora (from Jobvite)
Migrations To Workday
- CocaCola (from Peoplefluent/Peopleclick)
- F5 Networks (from Ceridian)
- GoDaddy (from Jobvite)
- Illumina (from Kenexa-Brassring)
- Live Nation (from Monster)
- Philips (from Taleo)
- Prime Therapeutics (from Kenexa-Brassring)
- VMware (from Kenexa-Brassring)
Migrations to Taleo
- Sabre Corp (from SuccessFactors)
- Chubb Insurance (from ADP)
- Lending Club (from Jobvite)
Migrations to iCIMS
- Burlington Coat Factory (from Taleo)
- Ingredion (from SuccessFactors)
Some Trends We Expect with Top ATS Systems
There are a number of trends that affect ATS software. Here are a few we see:
HCM Suites Versus Best of Breed ATS’s
There is a battle going in the ATS market.
On the one side, you have Human Capital Management (HCM) Suites like Oracle, Workday, SAP and Ultimate Software — they provide ATS software as well as a suite of other HR software.
- The major benefit is that it’s one-stop shopping.
- The drawback is that it can take a long time to launch and then smooth out the wrinkles. For instance, we hear of many examples of major employers taking 2 to 3 years to migrate to Workday.
On the other side you have “best of breed” ATS systems (like iCIMS, Greenhouse, SmartRecruiters and Lever).
- The main benefit of a best-of-breed ATS is that you can more easily add 3rd party software applications (video interviewing, sourcing, credit checks, etc.). For example, iCIMS and Greenhouse each have about 200 3rd party “integration partners” to add value to their ATS without you having to leave your ATS.
- The main drawback of a best-of-breed ATS is that you may have to do extra development work to get the pieces to work together.
Consolidation of ATS Companies
We expect the ATS market to continue to consolidate.
- Recruitment Marketing — Talent first needs to be acquired and there’s plenty of recruitment marketing software to help you do that.
- The ATS — The candidate needs to be tracked until they are hired.
- Onboarding — The employee then needs to join the employee workflow (to get paid, trained, reviewed, etc.)
Notice how the ATS is smack in the middle.
I expect that the strategic positioning of the ATS will cause it to be a key chip in the game of recruiting software consolidation (including mergers and acquisitions).
For instance, PrimePay (a payroll company since 1986) just added both an ATS and on-boarding to its payroll solution. You might recall that another payroll company, Paycor, acquired the Newton ATS back in Dec. 2015.
Other ATS-related consolidation includes:
- iCIMS acquired TextRecruit
- Greenhouse launched a CRM feature
- Avature (a CRMl) launched its own ATS
Our List of Applicant Tracking Systems will Grow
However, we also expect to see our list of applicant tracking systems grow 12 months from now when we update this report. The ATS market can be so lucrative that there are new ATS systems popping up every week.
Check out the number of top ATS’s we tracked in our 4 reports to date:
- 50 in 2014
- 70 in 2016
- 99 in 2017
- 119 in 2018
And if you want to see even longer lists of applicant tracking systems, just Google any of these terms:
- “applicant tracking system list”
- “top applicant tracking systems”
- “best applicant tracking systems”
Some lists of ATS’s are 200+ long!
Newer ATS’s Will Continue to Move Upstream/Up-Market
Newer ATS’s like Greenhouse, Lever and SmartRecruiters began their business targeting startups — but they continue to go “upstream”, landing much larger clients.
- Greenhouse now powers Taco Bell and Major League Baseball
- Lever powers Netflix
- SmartRecruiters powers much of Verizon
These newer ATS’s are following the same playbook that iCIMS used. They first targeted the small and medium-sized market and then moved upstream to larger enterprises (iCIMS is now the ATS for most of Amazon, one of the largest hirers in the U.S.).
The New Google ATS
Google continues to make headway with their new ATS software. They could be a top 10 ATS if they really go for it.
Afterall, this is Google — they have super-smart engineers and a ton of cash to work on this for a lawwwngg time (see 7 Reasons You Should Care About Google’s New ATS).
The Google Hire ATS isn’t yet for everyone (they seem to be targeting only customers of their G-Suite solution (Gmail, Google Docs, etc.). So, if you’re using Microsoft Outlook for email, they won’t try to convert you to their ATS (yet!).
Most of Google Hire’s current customers have less than 25 job openings.
A telling milestone for the Google ATS is whether/when Google uses Google Hire as the ATS system for its own huge volume of internal hires. That would mean that Google scaled it to be a true enterprise-level ATS that could appeal to large Fortune 500-level employers.
Why We Publish The Top ATS Report
The reason we publish this free Top ATS Report is that our Ongig recruiting software integrates with applicant tracking system to help employers transform their job pages and boost quality candidate applications. So, we need to stay on top of the top ATS software and how they’re doing.
Ongig solutions include Branded Candidate Experience, Text Analyzer (including diversity), Job Description Rewriting and Custom Videos.
I hope this report was useful to you! We welcome you to comment below.
— Rob and the Ongig team