So. You need a Recruitment CRM. Where do you start?

A good Recruitment CRM can help you track candidates, automate tasks, and measure hiring results. But the right Recruitment CRM can transform your business operation, seamlessly improve hiring communication and application oversight, and revolutionise consultant behaviours and hiring cultures within your company or agency. 

But with so many CRMs on the market, tightening budgets and a candidate-dominated talent market, how do you choose the right Recruitment CRM for your organisation? 

How do you know you’re getting full bang for your buck, sustainable ROI and better hiring outcomes before you even dive in?

That’s where we step in!

What is a Recruitment CRM?

A Recruitment CRM (candidate relationship manager, or as it’s sometimes called a customer relationship manager) is software that manages relationships with job seekers and clients. It manages candidate applications, client and candidate communications, and tracks business opportunities through your sales pipeline.

These pieces of software are not, however, passive data dumps of information or a simple list of candidates – they are active digital partners in the management, identification, and evaluation of your active candidates, passive leads, and potential future hires for jobs.

Variants of candidate relationship management software are used by almost every enterprise (“over 98% of Fortune 500 companies use recruitment software”), and in regard to CRMs, they are overwhelmingly invested in above other software platforms such as ATS’ (applicant tracking systems) and according to PageUp, “61% of companies spent more on their Recruitment CRM software than on their ATS”).

Some of the most important functions of a Recruitment CRM include:

  • Candidate tracking.
    • The CRM can be used to store information about candidates, such as their contact information, resume, interview notes and right to work documents.
  • CV parsing and candidate matching.
    • Extracting data from CV’s and important information regarding skills and qualifications with ease on a single platform, which is being increasingly used to match candidates with available jobs.
  • Lead tracking and candidate tracking.
    • CRM platforms create easy-to-access pathways for candidate applications and communications and offer transparent visibility with client communications.
  • Task automation, customisable marketing outreach, social integration and tailored comms. 
    • A CRM can be used to automate tasks, such as sending email reminders and scheduling interviews; some platforms integrate with social media profiles to offer a one-stop-shop for marketing outreach; and most offer easily customisable automated comms for all stakeholders, whether candidate or client.
  • Reporting and MI.
    • A CRM can be used to generate reports on the recruiting process, such as the number of candidates applied, the number of interviews conducted, and the number of hires made, providing management information and actionable insights.
  • Cloud-based services.
    • These days, Recruitment CRMs are almost always offered as SaaS products, available in the cloud, and accessible from anywhere, on any device. 
  • Video solutions.
    • Some CRM providers offer plug-and-play video solutions too, integrating digital interview management into the tech platform mix.
  • Integration.
    • Recruitment CRMs are ever-increasingly placing emphasis on integration, ensuring the best possible experience for you users, and the most efficient use of time and data. API connectors such as Zapier, Power Automate and Workato are becoming commonplace integrations for recruitment software solution providers, as they allow simple and scalable integration across thousands of technology platforms.

In short, a Recruitment CRM is a widely-utilised recruitment, client and candidate management tool with a proven hiring heritage that helps almost everyone hire more efficiently, more effectively and more sustainably.  

Do you really need a Recruitment CRM?

The stats don’t lie – as indicated above almost every company has some form of candidate management technology in place to handle candidate communications and applications such as a Recruitment CRM. 

But of course, we don’t advocate tech-parroting what others do. 

What we urge every recruitment business leader to do is critically analyse where a Recruitment CRM will make the most definitive impact on your hiring success, and how each consultant will benefit from a single software point of contact for all candidate comms. 

In effect, can you envisage alignment of CRM capabilities with company goals, budget, brand and existing candidate relationships?

Ask where you need to make drastic improvements to meet your recruitment goals. What are you lacking in your recruitment processes? Are there any gaps in your hiring metrics that need adjustment or investment? Is your time-to-hire too long? Are you planning to scale, and will your candidate management system as it is, be able to handle the additional strain?

A well-integrated Recruitment CRM can help with every point above. The caveat, of course, is preparing your recruitment channels, making sure your existing tech stack can integrate with an additional platform, and training every consultant on the nuances of the platform. 

What are the benefits of a Recruitment CRM? 

Increased recruitment ROI.

  • However you judge recruitment ROI, at the end of the day if your tech solutions are sourcing and vetting better quality candidates more frequently; applying data analysis to prepare and manage applications; and improving candidate comms up and down the recruitment channel, you’re onto a winner. 
  • A well-sourced Recruitment CRM provides structure and support to consultant candidate management and job applications, and provides trackable data on application success rates, candidate feedback, client and candidate satisfaction and more.

Smoother interview process.

  • A Recruitment CRM can streamline and automate multi-stage interview communications, meaning no candidate is ever left in the dark about what is expected of them pre- or post-interview. 
  • The bane of any good recruiter is leaving a candidate in the dark, either by accident or on purpose. A recruitment CRM means no matter where a consultant is, candidates can guarantee triggered, pre-planned communications that can lay the groundwork for a well-prepared and expected interview process.

Cost efficiencies.

  • From saving your consultants time on administrative tasks or basic job marketing (thereby reinvesting that time in high-quality recruitment tasks), to ridding your paperwork pile of duplicate forms or wayward engagement letters, digitising your candidate comms creates unparalleled efficiencies. 
  • Not to mention the savings made if (and this is a big if) you decide to import hybrid or flexible working into your recruitment team. By allowing your teams the chance to work from anywhere, and with CRMs being primarily cloud-based, your business can save on a lot of costs, from reducing office space to saving on in-office bills, not to mention helping your consultants save money on travel.

Based on the above, how important is a Recruitment CRM to hiring?

This all comes down to the alignment of technical needs with company goals. 

Indeed, as our partner Sonovate puts it so well, “meeting or exceeding customer expectations is critical for a business to succeed. In this competitive industry, if you aim for your recruitment business to stand out, it is crucial to integrate a CRM system within your daily operations”.

Through the lens of meeting and exceeding candidate expectations, it’s vital every possible digital tool can be deployed that gives you an edge. A recruitment CRM gives you that, in both scalability, usability, and efficiency.

How do I find Recruitment CRMs?

Search Engines.

  • Google will always be your best friend for initial CRM outreach. Depending on your search parameters you’ll have immediate access to hundreds of your providers and, with a little digging, you’ll be able to book a demo or two in no time. 
  • However, beware the PPC-heavy nature of Google Ads – Google elevates certain providers based on search criteria and marketing spend to “capture” your query. Some, if not most, CRM providers may not have the exact tools you need for your candidate base or unique business needs, so approach search engine-only strategies with a healthy dose of scepticism, and apply a strict usability and requirement filter to the companies you want to engage with.


  • Referrals will forever be one of the most trusted and valuable resources to call on when it comes to building a workable recruitment tech stack. 
  • However, again we urge caution – retrofitting a CRM solution from one company to another will not guarantee improved service or more digitally effective candidate management. Investing in a Recruitment CRM that meets your unique staffing solution mosaic of industry requirements, consultant input, candidate needs and regulatory requirements should be your priority.


  • Why dive into the Google morass and be at the whim of promoted adverts when the perfect Recruitment CRM search tool exists right under your nose?
  • Rectec Compare and our growing Marketplace offers eagle-eyed recruitment and TA professionals a free, easily accessible solution to finding the right recruitment CRM. 
  • You can search our Marketplace for a selection of leading recruitment CRMs to get a showcase overview of what the CRM market holds for shoppers, and our comparison service provides an in-depth comparative study of a selection of recruitment CRMs, fit for your needs. 

Rectec and Recruitment CRMs.

Rectec sits at the juncture between organisations that know they need to transform in a changing recruiting environment, and Recruitment CRM providers eager to spread their solution gospel.

Our Recruitment CRM vendor partner list grows frequently, and you can be assured that, with our Comparison service, Rectec Compare, and the Rectec Marketplace, you’ll have an objective view of what some of the world’s leading CRM providers can do for you! 

At Rectec we help organisations to find the best recruitment and talent acquisition technologies to suit your needs. 

From Applicant Tracking System and Recruitment CRM comparison, to vendor snapshots, and technology showcases in our unique technology marketplace, we provide fee-free tools to help you build the perfect recruitment tech stack for your business!