Unused Software: Unlocking the Hidden Costs of Shelfware in TA

by | Oct 19, 2023 | News

Do you ever check your bank statement throughout the month and notice these small, $5-$15 charges popping up every now and then? “Oh, it’s just $5, I can afford that,” you might think. However, here’s the kicker: the average consumer juggles a whopping 12 paid subscriptions, and those seemingly insignificant charges quickly accumulate, totaling around $219 on average each month. But you just can’t live without Netflix, Prime, HBO, Peacock, DashPass, Spotify, or PlayStation Plus… right? Actually, you likely wouldn’t even miss a few of those subscriptions, considering that roughly 30% of them go entirely unused. 

In the recruiting world, the story is strikingly similar. In this blog, we’re going to delve into the world of those elusive software subscriptions that lurk within your TA tech stack, often underutilized or completely ignored. We’ll explore the impact of these underused resources on your TA team’s budget and, most importantly, discuss the actionable steps you can take to bring them under control. 

Why Software Goes Unused 

According to a report from Nexthink, nearly half of all installed software and SaaS apps go unused by employees. This wastefulness can be attributed to a variety of factors, including: 

  • Overambitious Purchasing: Businesses often splurge on the highest-tier subscription that’s loaded with features they end up never using.  
  • Lack of Training and Complex Interfaces: Unintuitive interfaces can get in the way of users utilizing a tool effectively and it can stop them from wanting to use it at all. 
  • Poor Integration: Software that doesn’t work well with your existing technology infrastructure may hinder it from working properly, diminishing its value. 
  • Obsolescence Due to Evolving Needs: As the priorities of your businesses change over time, tools that were once useful may become obsolete as they no longer align with the company’s needs. 
  • Overlapping Tools: Many companies have multiple tools that do mostly similar things, resulting in inefficiencies and redundant expenses. 
  • Talent Acquisition and ATS Optimization: For talent acquisition, it’s crucial to make the most of Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to streamline your recruitment processes. However, many businesses underutilize these tools, resulting in shelfware.

These are just a few of the hidden threats that lead to the gradual erosion of resources. 

The Costs of Shelfware 

In uncertain times, costs often must be cut in various areas throughout the business. Before turning to drastic measures like issuing a round of layoffs, put in the effort to identify any deadweight that nobody will miss: shelfware. A recent study showed that these dormant software subscriptions account for around 30% of all software subscriptions and lead to an average annual waste of a $17 million in enterprise spending on unused licenses. That money could be invested in areas that drive the growth of your business, but instead it’s tied up in superflous software. 

There are also many indirect costs associated with shelfware. Unused software not only drains your financial resources but can also hinder overall productivity, creating a frustrating gap between the tools available and their actual application in the workplace. Additionally, maintenance costs add to the financial burden. Even when software goes unused, businesses often continue to pay for maintenance, support, and updates, further inflating the costs associated with shelfware. 

Streamlining Your Tech Stack and Avoiding Shelfware 

A highly effective approach for addressing shelfware and proactively minimizing its future impact is through the practice of technology consolidation. This strategic move entails the integration of numerous software solutions into a more streamlined and efficient tool, resulting not only in significant cost reductions but also in productivity enhancements and smoother operations. 

  • Inventory and Assessment: Start by conducting a comprehensive audit of your software subscriptions. Identify what’s being used, what’s not, and the reasons behind the underutilization.
  • End-User Involvement: When considering new software purchases, actively involve the end-users. Their perspectives are invaluable in making informed decisions. Ensure that the software aligns with their needs and is user-friendly.
  • Evaluate Consistently: Implement regular software assessments to monitor usage and relevance. If a specific tool is generally underused, consider downsizing or discontinuing it entirely to save costs.
  • Evolving Needs and Priorities: Recognize that business needs change, and software requirements evolve. Regularly review your software stack to ensure it remains aligned with your organizational goals.
  • Clear Objectives: Establish clear objectives for software implementation and ongoing performance measurement. Regularly communicate with teams to ensure software tools are being used effectively.

Whether in our personal lives with unused streaming services or in the corporate landscape with dormant software licenses, the cumulative impact of unused software is undeniable. With the average enterprise squandering millions of dollars annually, the time to act is now.

At MojoHire, we’re acutely aware of the departmental handwringing brought about by TA shelfware. That’s part of why we treat our clients as partners: we don’t just help our users with consolidating their tech stack, we proactively seek their feedback so we can continue to innovate and better our product.  

Schedule a MojoHire demo today and unlock the power of a TA tool that won’t collect dust on your shelf!  

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