“It would have been short-sighted if we hadn’t reviewed CVMinder ATS”


Executive SummaryMidKent College Logo

  • 700 College employees
  • 50 Hiring Managers
  • 4 HR staff recruitment
  • 2 Campuses
  • 1 solution

Managing recruitment for over 100 vacancies each year and across 2 campuses can be a challenge. MidKent College reviewed a number of systems, but wanted natural cooperation between HR and Hiring Managers a reality. CVMinder ATS was implemented in one day and put into full production within one week to:

  • Manage applications for all College vacancies
  • Support natural cooperation between HR and Hiring Managers
  • Improve security
  • Ensure recruitment compliance
  • Shorten advertising to hire performance


About the client

MidKent College is one of the largest Further Education and training providers in the South East.  Its £86m campus in Medway boasts some of the best vocational training facilities in England. The College employs around 700 staff and also offers a recruitment service to the Royal Engineers in Chatham.

As the Director of Corporate Services, Andrea Ashman is responsible for;

  • All Human Resources across the College and Barracks
  • Determining the College’s strategic direction

Ian Johnston, Head of HR, manages employee relations, payroll and recruitment. His team is actively involved with day to day recruitment.


The challenge

MidKent College’s applicant numbers can be very high for certain positions so tracking, shortlisting and communicating with everybody was a time consuming task. Prior to implementing CVMinder ATS, the recruitment process relied upon paper and a dedicated HR email account. Gemma, HR Assistant, explains,

“We had a dedicated email account so that applicants could send information requests and return completed applications forms. We saved completed applications in job folders and printed copies for Hiring Managers to support shortlisting. The whole process took a lot of time and a good deal of chasing.”

Relying upon paper and email, it was difficult to track the progress of each application and identify those who hadn’t completed application forms. With lots of administration and no consolidated overview it was difficult to identify and work towards the ambition of process improvements and:

  • Communicate with all applicants equally quickly and professionally
  • Identify cost-effective advertising channels
  • Improve advertising to hire performance


The solution

Centralising recruitment and more effective management of the process required a software solution. Initially, MidKent favoured the development of an internal system as it was concerned about installing a vendor product. After reviewing the market and receiving proposals, MidKent found that many suppliers of Applicant Tracking Systems offered very similar features and functions. Andrea comments,

“When XperiSoft approached us, several other companies had presented their solutions. However, they were all delivering a similar sales pitch and the products had very similar specifications. None seemed to stand out and few appeared to offer a comfortable fit for us. We held off and looked at the possibility of developing a software solution as part of our own HR software.”

However, the excellent experience of CVMinder Student HUB in MidKent College’s JobShop prompted a change of mind,

“Given the success of CVMinder Student HUB in our JobShop, we felt it was timely and appropriate to explore CVMinder ATS. We learned that their application process was very effective, even for students, and that the JobShop found it very easy to use, so it would have been short-sighted if we hadn’t taken the opportunity to review it.”

Upon review, the team recognised that CVMinder was different from other Applicant Tracking Systems in that it seemed to flow naturally and support true collaboration very effectively. Andrea explained that XperiSoft’s approach to software development was also important to them,

“Of real value is that XperiSoft really understands recruitment, not just software. With CVMinder ATS, the product focusses on making easy the core job of managing and measuring applicants, rather than offering features that just look good on paper.”

XperiSoft’s customer service was also a decision factor. Ian Johnson, HR Manager, believes that great training and support have helped to maintain the College’s sterling reputation,

“When we have a query or issue the CVMinder team responds very quickly and efficiently which is really important for us. They also support our applicants and that’s a real bonus for us because we were really sensitive to the possibility of losing great people in the recruitment process as a consequence of technical problems with any system.”

Sticking to basics gives MidKent College a sense of confidence in CVMinder ATS,

“We found that many other providers oversold their product capabilities. In contract, XperiSoft knows its product really well and the team can tell us when something is genuinely on the roadmap. If they commit to something, they deliver it.”

Gemma Bassett Burr, HR Assistant, believes that CVMinder ATS delivery was painless and professional,

“We learned how to use the full system in a day, including user setup and lots of other configuration options. We even used CVMinder to post our first job on our own website by the end of that session. The system is so simple that we can train a Hiring Manager on how to shortlist candidates with just a telephone call.”


The results

Faster, less costly recruitment

Ian Johnson believes that centralised management and greater visibility helps. He comments,

“We can see the status of each vacancy, the applicants and who’s yet to receive communication at every stage of the process. Communication is fast and professional and sharing between HR and Managers is performed without administration.  Not only that, but we have managed to hire into positions that always proved difficult in the past.  I think that’s because we can all identify great candidates sooner. There’s no doubt that the combination of process efficiencies and better results saves us money.”


A better HR service to the College

Gemma believes that her department’s reputation in the College has improved,

“Managers can see what’s happening with their own vacancies on CVMinder. They’re involved from the start which means that we get fewer phone calls for status updates. We’ve actually been congratulated for the way we manage recruitment which is a little different from the way it used to be”

“Department Managers are busy people, so being able to shortlist applicants from any location, without paper is a real advantage for them. We use measurements for shortlisting so the managers don’t have to wait until closing date to complete this in one hit.  They feel that their workload is reduced and everything is completed much more quickly, so we don’t have to chase them as much. It’s a win, win.”


Enhanced data security

Andrea believes that the important subject of data protection and security has been answered,

“We no longer copy and deliver piles of confidential paper with personal details. I can access everything I need on CVMinder from anywhere via a laptop, as can everyone else. Quite a number of our staff members work from home at times or like to shortlist applicants after hours. CVMinder ATS helps us to protect ourselves by keeping candidate details secure, even when we’re on the move.”

With reduced printing and postage, the College believes that it has achieved a direct cost saving as well as the hidden savings of reduced administrational time, more targeted advertising and so on. Advertise to hire performance has improved and the HR team has been congratulated for the way it manages recruitment overall.

When asked why they would recommend the product to another HR department, Andrea, Ian and Gemma concluded with, “Because it’s simple to use and delivers results.”

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