Churning Out Efficiencies: How Modern Manufacturers Can Benefit from Digital Contracts

Today’s manufacturers face an unprecedented series of challenges, ranging from supply chain disruptions and labor shortages to increased competition and rising input costs. Such obstacles have exposed longstanding inefficiencies within the industry. They’ve simultaneously presented opportunities for improvements among innovative, forward-thinking organizations.

Manufacturers seeking to remain competitive in today’s market can benefit greatly through the implementation of efficient contract processes. They represent a critical tool in enabling agility by empowering organizations to quickly source new vendors, onboard new staff, and electronically negotiate contracts.

How modern contracting can help in manufacturing

Many manufacturers begin their digital transformation of the contract process with Docusign eSignature, to capture a fast and easy win. With compelling features such as pre-built templates for common agreements in functions like HR and procurement, and SMS delivery to speed up the acceptance and electronic signing of required documents, eSignature is the natural first step toward achieving efficiency and time savings across a wide range of agreement cycle use cases.

For more sophisticated contract lifecycle needs, manufacturers can continue their digitization journey with the deployment of a contract lifecycle management (CLM) solution, which offers advanced features and functionality. Docusign CLM allows all parties to collaborate, negotiate, and act on agreements faster, helping manufacturers maintain a resilient workforce, keep supply chains moving, and the factory floor humming.

Build relationships and streamline sourcing

Manufacturers need ways to solidify client relationships while establishing efficient vendor sourcing and onboarding processes. Docusign solutions can help centralize and streamline full end-to-end agreement and procurement processes to save time, control costs, decrease risks and increase visibility into the full contract lifecycle.

Meantime, the customer experience is bolstered through a streamlined end-to-end process from the field, to production and installation.

Improve workforce agility

The benefits of going digital include improved agility in the form of smoother onboarding processes, streamlined safety policies, and more reliable record-keeping.

Manufacturers who embrace the digital transition can expedite the overall procurement cycle for hiring industry and vendor experts, as well as automate and digitize processes for streamlining all employee, contract and vendor onboarding.

By utilizing online tools, manufacturers can also digitally distribute employee policies and handbooks while seamlessly overseeing the signing process, which employees can complete from any location. Electronic signatures can also be used for background checks, personal identity verification credentials, contracts, and more. Signed agreements can be stored in a secure central repository for easy access and safekeeping.

Those repositories can be used to document workplace safety as well. Manufacturers can use them to store health screening questionnaires and other documents needed to remain OSHA compliant.

Bill of ladings–legal documents issued by a carrier–are another space where manufacturers can find operational efficiencies. A bill of lading is issued to a shipper or manufacturer and details the type, quantity, and destination of cargo that needs to be sent to a customer. E-signatures enable faster and more efficient bill of lading transactions, and are every bit as secure as a traditional paper-based document. But unlike the hardcopy version, a digital bill of lading can’t be misplaced.

Modernized operations

Manufacturers can manage value-added services through a digital system of agreements. By embracing modern technologies, they can easily manage proof of work completion and shipments while minimizing production and distribution delays.

Meantime, remote staff can use a cloud-based digital system to gain visibility into the progress of field installations, gain access to critical documents, and receive status updates from any device, at any time.

On the legal and compliance front, modern systems ensure that all agreements are executed consistently and as agreed through a digitized document management process.

To maintain competitiveness and agility in an ever-evolving landscape, the modern manufacturer must address its foundational systems, eliminating process bottlenecks and seeking greater efficiency and automation within every critical function. A digital system of agreements is a natural place to start and should be among the top IT priorities for the near future.

Digital Contracts for Modern Manufacturing

Read more about how digital processes can drive efficiency for manufacturers in this eBook.

Are you ready to begin your digital document management journey? Start your free Docusign trial today.