August 17, 2021
Adobe Sign Raises the Speed Limit on Business Processes
This e-signature service is improving the turnaround time on important contracts and agreements at CDW.
Lisa Froehlich, Sr. Legal Project Assistant at CDW, smiles and shakes her head as she recounts the process she used to go through to get a contract signed. “It’s amazing to look back on how time-consuming it used to be to route a contract.” It could be a weeks-long, multi-step process: printing the contract, attaching signing stickers, delivering internally to a CDW executive for signature, creating a PDF of the signed contract to send to the outside party, receiving back the newly signed contract, inputting the contract into CDW’s digital contract repository. Today, thanks to the expanding use of Adobe Sign within CDW, this same process now takes minutes.
Sign’s Ease of Integration
The adoption of Agiloft, a business process management platform, within CDW led to the adoption of Sign. Adobe’s cloud-based e-signature service integrates smoothly into Agiloft, allowing users to send, sign, track and manage the signature process for business contracts. Stephanie Santander, Director of Program Sales, makes use of Adobe Sign for her department’s contracts: “We are using it for a number of statements and agreements with customers, partners and vendors.”
Use of the e-signature service got a big boost during the recent pandemic. “Many of our corporate clients had most of their staff working from home,” explains Santander. “Using Adobe Sign to capture signatures allowed us to easily turn around contracts with these remote workers.” As a result, she now sees more of CDW’s sales teams making use of Adobe Sign and expects adoption to increase as more account executives familiarize themselves with its features.
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Customizing for Unique Needs
Beyond the simple fact that Adobe Sign shrinks the turnaround time on contracts, Santander likes how the service can be customized. “When we require signatures from a high-level executive, they are not always privy to the details of the contract and the negotiations that led to it. In these situations, we’ve created an executive brief summary that’s sent along with the contract. This allows them to get up to speed on what exactly they are signing. It’s really helpful.”
For Froehlich, the best thing about Adobe Sign is how easy it is to check on the status of a contract. “I can pull up any contract and check to see where in the signature process it is. And if it’s stuck, I can send reminders to the relevant parties.” With much of the contract process automated, she is now able to turn her attention to other responsibilities. “It definitely drives efficiencies in my role and frees me up to get to other things.”
Learning to make use of the Adobe Sign features was a snap for both Santander and Froehlich, requiring very little onboarding. An outside consultant was brought in to do live training on it. “We created step-by-step manuals along with screenshots to share with my team,” says Santander. Both women were able to quickly master the service and teach other team members how to use it.
Getting Started with Sign
“Two licensing models are available for Adobe Sign,” explains Collier Carson, Business Development Specialist at CDW. “The ‘named user model’ allows each individual user access to the service and access to a pool of 150 shared transactions per license. Next, there’s the ‘transactional model version,’ which is based on purchasing a pool of transactions and allows for an unlimited number of users, which makes the product much more scalable.” CDW opted for the transactional licensing model.
For organizations that are using Microsoft, it’s important to note that Adobe is a preferred partner with Microsoft. Employees are able to download the Adobe Sign app to devices running Microsoft Office 365 and can quickly set up to use it. “As time goes on, we feel that this tight integration with Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft Teams, Microsoft SharePoint, Microsoft Dynamics, Microsoft PowerApps and Power Automate will prove to be an increasingly compelling selling point for customers,” says Collier.
As an Adobe partner itself, CDW offers managed third-party support services for Sign. “We can walk customers through a proof of concept with Adobe Sign,” explains Collier. “And we can oversee deployment, working through the integration with Microsoft.”
Delivering a Win-Win Experience
When it comes to speedy processing of business, it’s not just coworkers inside CDW that are taking note of Adobe Sign’s value. Customers are noticing too. “I’ve received more than one email from customers thanking me for how quickly we were able to turn around a contract,” says Froehlich. That’s the kind of feedback that highlights the win-win nature of business processes that take advantage of all that Adobe Sign has to offer.
Keeping Your Contracts Secure
Adobe Sign supports a broad range of legal signature requirements. Most standard compliance guidelines include these three requirements, all supported by Adobe Sign:
Make use of standard e-signature requests, enhanced e-signatures or digital signatures to provide proof of a signer’s identity.
Intent and consent:
Adding a signature or ‘click to accept’ provides intent; having signers accept a standard or customized agreement before opening the document; allowing signers to opt out and sign by hand.
Delivery of final, executed documents to all parties; storage of final documents in repository; and digital IDs, if used, are encrypted in the final document.
Alex Slagg writes for CDW’s Tech magazines and web properties. He is also a Marketing Program Manager at CDW, overseeing content strategy and production, with a focus on data center and networking technologies. He lives in Chicago.