Accelerating Digital Transformation at the California Department of Water Resources

The California Natural Resources Agency (CNRA) is a state agency dedicated to the restoration, protection and maintenance of the “Golden State’s” natural and cultural resources. Within CNRA are 26 distinct departments, conservancies and commissions, including the Department of Water Resources (DWR), which protects, conserves, develops and manages all of California’s water resources.

CNRA is dedicated to providing the best possible services to California’s citizens and has been undergoing digital transformation efforts to modernize its manual, inefficient processes to simplify the sending and tracking of documents and create better interoperability between departments.

The agency chose Docusign and implemented its solutions across the agency's 20,000+ employees for its digital transformation journey, a process that began with DWR. Led by Kevin See, the department’s Deputy CIO, DWR integrated eSignature to streamline one particularly complex use case: the procurement process for DWR’s purchasing contracts. These documents are now delivered quickly via email, cutting hard paper costs reducing turnaround time by 75%.

After this first successful integration of Docusign, DWR began implementing department-wide changes. They worked with Docusign’s Customer Success team to establish a center of excellence (COE) and gain executive sponsorship for the projects. Then, they began rolling out Docusign across business operations within DWR which include fiscal, human resources and business services. 

With the bulk send and advanced workflow features, they streamlined HR’s distribution merit salary adjustment certifications, a previously complicated and error-prone process. By automating this workflow, the HR team saves about 570 pieces of paper per month. Additionally, over 70% of MSA documents are now signed and returned on the same day they are sent. 

Docusign’s Customer Success team was especially instrumental to DWR in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. It set up change management processes for DWR’s switch to remote work, digitizing crucial paperwork like the emergency telework request form and creating user accounts for all employees and training everyone. Since then, the department’s use of Docusign has increased by 800%, and in one month, employees sent more than 19,000 digital forms. 

With Docusign, DWR was able to more easily manage this crisis—and is now primed to handle future digital transformation efforts and become a digital enterprise. 

To learn more, check out CNRA’s full Docusign Success story here.