Introducing Dave, EHS Manager & Docusign Admin at CDCR

In 1851, California debuted its first prison: a wooden ship anchored in San Francisco Bay. Today, there are 35 facilities (on dry land) across the state—and the agency that is now known as the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) employs over 63,000 people...including Dave Hawley.

Dave joined the agency in 1987.  He’s worn many hats and experienced many changes throughout his 30+ year tenure. But one thing had remained the same at CDCR: a reliance on paper-based processes. From the Enterprise Information Systems (EIS) department, Dave is helping to change that. Read more about how CDCR worked with Docusign Customer Success to build a solid framework for transformation.

Meet Dave

Dave Hawley

When the pandemic hit, CDCR found itself in the same position as many other organizations across the globe: having to quickly transform face-to-face processes into electronic processes. We talked to Dave about his partnership with Docusign and his experience rolling out new technology during a global shutdown.

How did you get your start as a Docusign admin?

Docusign was brought into the department, my boss said: “Who wants to be the administrator?" I’d been an Adobe administrator before, so I volunteered for the role, but I warned my boss that it would take up the majority of my time because I’d planned on rolling Docusign out to its maximum potential.

What were things like before Docusign?

CDCR had been signing everything by hand for 150 years. We'd known about eSignature and the legislative bills that went through Sacramento approving it well before we adopted it. It just took COVID coming alone to get us to switch from the antiquated wet signatures on paper to what we have today.

What was it like implementing new technology to thousands of users—remotely—during a pandemic?

It took a lot of change management work. When we rolled out our first use case—employee timesheets—I did 31 one-hour live training courses—with 500 people per class. That may seem arduous—doing the same training 31 times—but with each class, the project gained more traction. Change managers in individual offices are also helping one another and really growing support locally.

What advice would you give other large organizations that are rolling out Docusign?

  1. Temper your expectations when it comes to goal setting: With the implementation of any new product—especially in a large organization—it normally takes 3-5 years for that product to mature. We’re just now coming into our second year.
  2. Prioritize use cases: With the help of our CSA, we started picking the low-hanging fruit within the department: What documents do we use the most? Which ones are the best fit for a PowerForm? Which ones require a matching template? Which ones are globally used? 
  3. Invite input: When you have someone that goes through an experience they don't like, those are the people you need to listen to. If I have a lot of people saying that they don't like Docusign, I know it's a failure on my part for not communicating it correctly. Maybe I haven't offered enough training. It really makes me re-look at how my communication is going out and where I need to make adjustments. 

What made you happiest about working with Docusign?

Partnering with the people at Docusign has been an excellent experience. I cannot speak more highly about our Customer Success Architect and the Customer Success Management team that helped us along the way. When we bought the product, no one really understood what it was. They endured all of my questions and helped us set the governance structure and sell it to our executive teams. 

What’s next? Anything exciting on the roadmap?

Those situations where time is of the essence...those are some of the Docusign use cases we’re looking at going forward. One we're undertaking now is electronically signed search warrants between the fugitive unit at CDCR and the county court. As you can imagine, that’s going to significantly shorten turnaround times. 

Read CDCR’s full Docusign success story.