6 tips for getting started with electronic signature - from Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

According to research from Deloitte, there is a strong correlation between a company's digital maturity and its financial performance. Put simply, the more advanced in its digital transformation, the better it performs.

While a full scale digital transformation is no small feat, the benefits of pivoting even a handful of manual processes to digital can have a significant impact. A perfect example of this is the digital pivot from manual wet ink signing to electronic signature. It’s quick and easy to implement across a number of functions - front office and back, and can have measurable impact across the business.  The impact? 82% of documents sent for signature using DocuSign are returned within a day (49% within 15 minutes), vs an average two week turnaround. Companies who implement the tool can also benefit from two hours productivity per contract gained, as documents no longer need to be printed / posted / filled after completion and reminders for completion can be automated.

Suzanne Gado (Managing Associate) and Katherine Crowley (Practice Development Manager) at Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP have been on a crusade to make things easier for lawyers and their clients through the adoption of electronic signatures. Their eSignature implementation, which took place well before the pandemic, has been somewhat of a success story at Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP with 65% of all staff, from lawyers to supporting functions like HR and finance using the tool. Suzanne and Katherine recently joined us for a webinar, where they shared their eSignature best practices. Here are 6 of their top tips for getting started and making sure you make the most from your investment:   

1. Never underestimate a client's appetite for change and process improvement.

DocuSign has been really well received by our clients which is heartening to see. We’ve had clients saying we wish we’d been doing this for years. It really was a big step forward for them, making the signing process more efficient. 

2. If you are an administrator, play with the default settings

DocuSign is a really flexible platform with lots of functionality. If it's not working the way you want it to, spend a bit of time playing around with the default settings to make sure it's set up in the best way for your organisation.

3. Engagement is key

We worked to identify our key users, and made sure we stayed close to them as they got to grips with a new way of working. Creating a space for users to collaborate is also important. We have a dedicated DocuSign user forum that our key users can access which contains a blog with links to training materials, demos and learning resources. And of course seek feedback to identify frustrations that might deter people from continuing to use the product. 

4. Don't rest on your laurels – embrace new feature enhancements

With technology there is the tendency to onboard it and move on once it’s up and running. But look at the new product enhancements. We are very excited to embrace the new send by text functionality that has arrived and which should help to speed up our envelope velocity even more.

5. Make use of templates

This allows us to set up the workflow in a prescribed way. Once the template is set up, users simply need to add signatory details/email addresses and tag their documents.  We were looking at this after receiving feedback from our users that setting up a particular workflow can be quite time consuming. Using templates will further streamline our process and make it even more efficient.

6. Explore APIs (application programming interface)

In plain English, APIs are integrations between DocuSign and other platforms. There are great APIs in the market such as with document management systems and collaboration platforms. Don’t view DocuSign as a standalone tool. Look at it as part of your toolkit, and explore how you can integrate it with the other tools you already use.  This will ensure you get the most out of DocuSign and create the most efficient process for your users. 

Watch the on-demand webinar now: Best Practices for Electronic Signing with Womble Bond Dickinson or try register for a free electronic signature trial now

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