In the past, we’ve talked about starting small when it comes to eSignatures. Now, it’s time to dream big. eSignatures and digital systems of agreement are here to stay – industry experts predict that successful businesses will soon become 100% digital for all transactions.

It’s pretty clear why. Digital systems of agreement reduce risk, lower costs, boost productivity and deliver a better experience for your employees, customers, suppliers and partners. Agreements are signed quickly making it easier to seal those important deals.

Paperless opportunities are everywhere

You might have started with eSignatures in sales. A great place to start. Your sales department is the beating heart of the business, bringing in new customers and, by default, new income. Removing paperwork from day-to-day tasks frees up your sales team to do more strategic relationship-building. Going digital also increases visibility into your sales funnel and facilitates a mobile, responsive workforce.

But why stop there? Having realised the benefits of digital systems of agreement in one area of the business, then don’t the teams in other departments deserve a look-in?

Have a think about all the customer, partner or supplier touchpoints across your business that could benefit from digital transactions. Breaking it down into five key departments – sales, IT, HR, procurement and legal – here are some of the more common contracts and documents that are ripe for digitisation.

In Sales:

Client-facing Sales NDAs, contracts, T&Cs, POs, financing, licensing agreements, and end-user agreements.
Sales Operations Order authorisations, T&E policies, deal split requests, compensation agreements, and event registrations.
Partner and Channel Sales Partner and reseller agreements, distribution agreements, channel partner scorecards, and referral agreements.
Account Management SOWs, MSAs, contract renewals, corrective action reports, benefits reviews, and account change requests.

In IT:

Legal and Operations Service contracts, M&A agreements, document retention, policy management, policy compliance, and board documentation.
Human Resources NDAs, releases for background checks, offer letters, benefits enrolment, direct deposit forms, and severance agreements.
Procurement RFPs, NDAs, sole source justifications, contracts, MSAs, statements of work, POs, and supplier compliance documentation.
Sales NDAs, contracts, end-user agreements, T&C’s, POs, deal split requests, compensation agreements, and reseller agreements.

In HR:

Recruiting NDAs, offer letters, releases for background checks, and recruiting agency agreements.
On-boarding Benefits enrolment, direct deposit forms, travel and expense policy, and social media policy.
Maintenance PTO requests, contractor agreements, internal approvals, headcount requisitions, business card requests, and required annual notices.
Off-boarding Termination certificates, severance and release agreements, and exit interviews.

In Procurement:

Sourcing & Vendor Mgmt RFPs, competitive summaries, sole source justifications, contracts, MSAs, and supplier compliance documentation.
Purchasing Purchase requisitions, POs, NDAs, contracts, and statements of work.
Travel & Credit Cards T&E policies, corporate card management, and P-card agreements.
Contingent Workforce Background checks, appropriate classification of contingent workers, and onboarding.

And in Legal:

Legal and Operations Service contracts, M&A agreements, document retention, policy management, policy compliance, and board documentation.
Human Resources NDAs, releases for background checks, offer letters, benefits enrollment, direct deposit forms, and severance agreements.
Procurement RFPs, NDAs, sole source justifications, contracts, MSAs, statements of work, POs, and supplier compliance documentation.
Sales NDAs, contracts, end-user agreements, T&C’s, POs, deal split requests, compensation agreements, and reseller agreements.

Getting started: Appoint an eSignature champion

Change is hard, but important. Encouraging employees to drop the “this is how we’ve always done it” mindset takes some shrewd leadership.

To promote cross-adoption and the widespread roll-out of eSignatures, it’s a great idea to appoint an eSignature champion – ideally someone near the top of the tree. Your eSignature champion has the task of educating the wider business on all the benefits of eSignatures and how they work. They are a cultural change-maker and play an important role in encouraging take-up of the technology.

Then, as well as looking at how individual agreements and contracts within each department could benefit from a digital makeover, consider how the information in agreements and contracts flows from one department to another.

For example, it’s important to make sure that tools for streamlining sales processes are also optimising your existing CRM investments. By integrating new technologies with existing systems, you can easily automate tasks like customer account setup and kicking off related internal processes, with limited manual intervention.

Bring together stakeholders from different departments to discuss document workflows, to see how you can improve the secure transmission of confidential documents from department to department. A little effort now will pay off with significant time savings and more return on your existing investments.

To learn how you can get started with eSignatures to modernise your workflows across departments, try DocuSign for free for 30 days.

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