As markets start to reopen and industries test their response strategies, organizations continue to adjust different areas of their business. Human resources is one such area, as companies analyze how to improve their recruitment operations. In addition to developing effective hiring practices and implementing a proactive approach, businesses can take advantage of the range of free recruiting software available.
Table of Contents
- What Is Recruiting Software?
- Best Free Recruiting Software
- Types of Recruiting Software
- Free Recruiting Software Features
- Features for SMBs
- Features for Recruiting Agencies
- Features for Enterprise Businesses
What Is Recruiting Software?
Recruitment is the process of attracting, evaluating, and hiring a job candidate to fill a gap or vacancy in the organization. Recruiting software is a subcategory of human resources management system (HRMS) that is focused on the recruitment process. The process involves job analysis, candidate sourcing, screening, selection, and onboarding. Today, free online recruiting software solutions are available to businesses of all sizes, whether they use in-house HR staff or professional recruitment agencies.
Recruiting software performs several functions that help optimize the users’ hiring process. It helps determine job description and specification for the organization; find and attract candidates; streamline communications; speed up the screening, evaluation, and selection process; and complete the final step of hiring. Sometimes, it also helps in onboarding new employees. The best free recruiting software is capable of fulfilling many of these functions at no cost.
Best Free Recruiting Software
Recruiting software optimizes the hiring process, which results in an improved experience for both candidates and recruiters. Free recruiting software has fewer features or lower limits compared with premium versions. However, this software can provide great value for the company if it satisfies the needs of the organization in efficiently hiring qualified people. Here are the best free recruiting tools available today.
Homebase is all-in-one small business software built for hourly work. It has built-in hiring and onboarding functionality that allows a company to post jobs, track applicants, and onboard new employees. Homebase is easy to use and includes several plans — including a free Basic plan. This plan supports a single location and unlimited employees.
The hiring feature gives users a library of pre-written, customized job descriptions. Users can post on top online job boards for free, collect walk-in and referral applications, and track all applicants in one place. Other features include automation, timesheets and time clock, scheduling and availability, and mobile apps with built-in messaging.
Hired is a job search marketplace that helps users find talent from the technology sector. It offers a free plan and several premium plans with additional features. For the free Access plan, it provides access to a high-quality talent pool. The site allows recruiters to find underrepresented candidates based on their DE&I goals, focus on skills and experience, and alerts for when salary offers are lower than usual.
Although Hired focuses only the candidate search aspect of recruiting, it can also integrate bidirectionally with fully featured applicant tracking systems (ATS), adding job vacancies from the ATS, as well as adding candidates ready for interview back to the ATS. It also integrates with OKTA identity management system, facilitates candidate assessment requests and review, and provides employers a personalized page that candidates can see.
Freshteam is the HR application from software company Freshworks. It is HR software for growing businesses, allowing users to manage hiring, onboarding, time off, employee data, and HR workflows. A free plan with basic HR functionality is available for small organizations of up to 50 employees. Users can post up to three published job postings, while a recruitment team inbox enables easy collaboration.
Freshteam also provides a basic, mobile-friendly career site that helps advertise the employer to applicants. Kanban boards allow users to create custom workflow stages for every job posting, clearly showing how candidates move across stages. Other features of the free recruiting software are email integration, employee referral management, built-in employee directory, org chart auto generation, basic time-off management, and mobile apps for iOS and Android.
SmartStart is free recruiting software and ATS from the providers of SmartRecruiters. It is for companies hiring 10 or fewer roles at any given time; it’s designed for smaller teams and organizations. The software allows companies to find and engage top talent, save time and money using a single platform, and help hiring teams collaborate.
SmartStart lets users share jobs on over 200 job boards and on social media. Users can create a custom branded career site, or use a job widget to list open jobs on the company’s site. Candidates can apply in one-click, use their mobile devices, and track their progress across the hiring process. Other features include applicant tracking, customizable interview scorecards, scheduling management tools, a centralized email gateway, and candidate database management.
Zoho Recruit hiring software is a cloud-based applicant tracking system for corporate HR teams, staffing agencies, and temporary workforce recruitment. The free plan includes a candidate hiring pipeline that provides a bird’s-eye view of the current recruitment status. Users can customize it by adding or removing stages and color-coding them. As a widget, users can place it on the dashboard.
Zoho Recruit also includes email management and integration to Zoho Campaigns. Users can manage their email marketing process by tracking responses from candidates. Other features include premium job board connections, interview scheduling, client and contact management, and timesheet management.
Hiretual is candidate search and data hub software that leverages the power of AI. The free Starter plan for a single user is ideal for new recruiters getting started with AI sourcing. It includes up to 25 candidates per search and three contact credits per day to uncover contact information in a profile. It provides a project folder to store candidate profiles and additional notes and tags for improved organization. The free plan also provides candidate profile insights.
Hiretual comes with enterprise-grade security compliance, including CCPA, GDPR, SOC2 Type 1 and 2, and EU-US Privacy Shield. It also provides a free Chrome extension to allow users to find talent on the go. The extension helps reveal contact information and sync candidates to the software while users browse the web.
Breezy HR is an ATS and recruiting software that enables users to attract and hire employees easily. A free Bootstrap plan with basic functionality for one position or a pool is available, as well as several paid plans. All plans come with unlimited users, candidates, and customer support. Other features with the free plan are a customizable branded career site, and connection with more than 50 job boards.
Breezy HR has resume parsing features with over 20 languages supported. Parsed resumes are searchable. Training and support services include email and web support, an online knowledge base, and video tutorials. A weekly webinar and premium add-ons, like access to searchable professional profiles and email/SMS messaging, are also available.
MyInterview is candidate video screening software that helps recruiters meet people going through the recruitment process. It offers a free Starter plan and several premium plans, depending on the number of active jobs or open positions allowed. The free plan allows users to send interview links for a single active job and two user seats to log into the dashboard.
MyInterview offers both one-way, pre-recorded interviews, as well as live, synchronous interviews — but the free plan only comes with up to 20 one-way interviews and no live interviews. Recruiters can, however, use SMS to send interview links, adjust time limits to answer a question, specify the number of recorded question retakes, and specify time candidates can see the question before recording begins. Other features include a Kanban board for candidate management, candidate sharing, rating, comments, analytics, and 24/7 support.
Loxo is recruiting automation software that comes with a free plan and a premium plan. The free plan includes a single user with access to an applicant tracking system and a recruiting CRM. The software is highly visual and easy to use for different recruiting teams in agencies, executive search firms, and in-house HR teams. It provides free recruitment database software with AI to guide recruiters in finding the perfect match between jobs and candidates.
Loxo ATS supports a company’s complete recruiting business process. Automated solutions help users maximize data to gain hiring advantage. A built-in candidate relationship management feature also helps users build and nurture candidate communities, and keep them engaged with pipelines and activity tracking.
Jobsoid is recruiting software for businesses and agencies. It provides a free Beginner plan that includes one job posting, one user account, and unlimited candidates. It provides a companion mobile app for iOS and Android to help users carry out the recruitment process on the go. The mobile app provides quick access to jobs and candidates, and the built-in email sending and receiving feature enables seamless communication with the candidates.
Jobsoid lets users on the free plan customize their career site with company branding. Users can post to free job boards in a single click. They can also add a Careers tab to their company Facebook page. Other features include website careers page integration, a Chrome plugin for sourcing, custom fields, customizable workflows, interview scheduling, task management, email and SMS templates, and automation.
Types of Recruiting Software
New innovations in the talent acquisition industry can help companies improve the outcomes of their recruitment process. Several types of recruiting software can facilitate one or more processes as recruiters source, track, analyze, assess, and hire candidates.
A job aggregator is a search engine designed for job-related posts and advertisements. The software gathers job postings from job boards and other web sites. It then consolidates all the information into a searchable interface. Information collected includes the source of the information, such as an employer website, job boards, or professional association sites. Job aggregators offer more comprehensive information than job boards, are more efficient to use, and provides a quick assessment of the job market in a particular field.
Applicant Tracking System (ATS)
An ATS is an application that automates the hiring process and the multiple steps involved. It organizes and streamlines the whole hiring process from sourcing to hiring. Legacy systems that use email and spreadsheets are now replaced by online software. ATS features include the ability to scan, sort, and rank candidates, as well as generate interview requests through email and text messages. It can also provide tools to help recruiters build, manage, and maintain career web pages, post to multiple job boards with a few clicks, and help teams collaborate to meet hiring goals.
Candidate Relationship Management (CRM)
Candidate relationship management software, sometimes referred to as a recruitment CRM, is an application that helps recruiters maintain a positive relationship with past, present, and potential candidates. It provides users the ability to stay in contact with individuals who are important to their recruiting efforts. Recruitment CRM software includes features such as email and text campaign, source and conversion rate analytics, drip campaigns, search functionality, talent pools, and call-to-action in landing pages.
Interview, Testing, and Assessment Tools
Video interview apps, and testing and assessment tools form part of the recruiting software solutions used by agencies and HR teams. It provides them the means to not only rely on past performances but also assess current capabilities and predict future performance. These tools can help formulate the best questions to ask, provide additional information for a comprehensive evaluation, and guard against any bias with standardized feedback and scoring.
Free Recruiting Software Features
High accessibility, a great number of integration with other tools, and the availability of companion mobile apps are features needed in the best free recruiting tools. Most of these solutions are available in commercial SaaS solutions, but free open source recruitment software like OpenCATS applicant tracking system is also available for those prepared to invest in on-premise solutions. Here are other important features to look for:
Easy Job Posting
Recruiting software that can simplify the creation of job posts with templates can save valuable time. Moreover, its ability to connect to multiple job boards and send by bulk with the fewest steps allow recruiters to spend more time on other tasks.
Candidate and Resume Search
Free recruiting software needs a good search functionality to look for a certain candidate and resume among many. The candidate database should be robust but also easy to maneuver and manage. A resume parser can extract important candidate details quickly as well as manage different formats and attachments.
When recruiters find candidates, tracking them from stage to stage of the recruitment process should be easy and visible, preferably within a single platform. Board views with customizable statuses give companies flexibility to adjust their recruitment workflow.
Recruitment software that allows teams to communicate with candidates within the tool or through native integration increases the effectiveness of team to maintain relationships of a larger group of candidates. Communication through email, text, or through social media are some of the channels available.
Career Site Management
Some software solutions provide drag-and-drop tools to help build career web pages where companies can show their brand. These tools can also provide forms to gather information, resumes, and other metrics.
Although free recruiting software are usually limited in the number of seats, some allow more than one user to support collaborative recruiting. This feature help teams share information, make evaluations, and assign tasks.
Automation and Integration
Many free applications offer automation and integration to provide a more comprehensive human capital management solution. Some of these features include simple email filters and forwarding, social media sharing, notifications and alerts, auto responses, and custom email templates.
Analytics and Reporting
Free software usually offers limited analytics and reporting functionality. Some tools can export data to more standard formats like CSV, Excel, and PDF.
Interview and Assessment
Unless this is the main function of the recruiting software, interview and assessment features are available through integration. Keep in mind that these features are crucial elements of the entire recruitment process.
Features for SMBs
Small and growing companies look to streamline the process of recruitment with the help of available software solutions.
- Candidate and Resume Sourcing: Unlike enterprises, SMBs need to find candidates more efficiently. Free recruiting software that can source and aggregate resumes faster will be valuable.
- Automation and Integration: Automation can help streamline some tasks, such as filtering of emails and sharing of posts in social media. Integration to other tools — especially messaging apps — will also be helpful.
- Mobile Access: Recruiting teams can be working in distributed and remote setups, so they need recruiting software mobile apps to maintain a connected and concerted effort.
Features for Recruiting Agencies
Recruiting agencies are special organizations focused on finding, attracting, and hiring candidates for a variety of clients. They can take advantage of free recruiting software with the following features:
- Easy Job Posting: Agencies need to post to as many job boards as possible in the most efficient way.
- Candidate and Resume Search: Recruiting software with powerful search and screening tools can ensure agencies are filling up their candidate database with quality talent.
- Interview and Assessment: Agencies need to make preliminary interviews and assessments to ensure they have the right candidates for their clients.
- Communication Tools: Maintaining a positive relationship with as many candidates as possible makes it easy for agencies to offer different job positions to the same individuals until a match is found.
Features for Enterprise Businesses
Enterprises can be more selective in their hiring process. Free recruiting software can complement outsourced services in different situations.
- Career Site Management: Enterprise businesses have established brands, so they need an application that allows them to easily customize a career page, and even accept inquiries and applications directly from the site or a mobile device.
- Employee Referral: Big companies can source from their employees quickly, so having a way to manage referrals is valuable.
- Automation and Integration: Enterprises typically have other HR systems, so the ability to automate and integrate recruiting software will improve the overall process. For instance, the recruiting software may need to send contact information to a CRM that can send personalized messages, or to a pre-assessment tool that performs background checks.