Generally, you'd start with a known process that has a flow and then adapt the technology to that process. There would be ways to take in applicants, build short-lists, have interviews and then select who to make an offer as part of the overall solution. Some systems may cost hundreds of thousands of dollars for the really big companies that want a great deal of customization on these systems.
I was given a basic out line and I've been fumbling my way through
some charts. I find the charts to be really annoying because of all
the what ifs that need to be demonstrated, making flowcharts
While you may not like it, covering the what ifs is part of building a solution in technology often and will be something to get adjusted to seeing. There will often be these kinds of things that if it isn't done upfront, you'll get them as bugs that the software should work this way or that. In other words, I'd find a way to get used to this and be thankful to have those charts as otherwise you'd be building your own version in the software.
I'm also researching Applicant Tracking Systems will little
understanding. One of the big requirements my manager had was weekly
updates on passive candidates. This seems to be a feature I never see
(We are a small company so that won't be too crazy of a list). Is that
because its a terrible feature?
No though there are a couple of different ways this feature could be constructed. First there is the report side where this is a report that can be run to see how many passive candidates are there and when was the last contact with each. Second would be the notification side of just sending the totals and not digging too deeply into the details. Is the weekly update merely the number of passive candidates or is it a whole spreadsheet of data about the passive candidates in the system?
One of the things I'd really like to see are some example workflows
I'm imagine some may go like this:
Put up job posting -> Collect submitted resumes -> Short list for interview -> Interview notes -> Short list for 2nd round -> 2nd round interview notes -> Give offer to selected candidate -> If necessary give offer to next selected candidate
Now, this presumes a couple of rounds of interviews and that short lists and notes would be part of the system. This could be tweaked as needed though generally you'd want to have a Subject Matter Expert verify that the flow is proper as there could be things missing, e.g. I didn't check references or do a background check in that flow I stated.