We all work differently. Some people prefer to multitask while others would rather focus on one thing at a time. Maybe you like to knock out the little things first, then set your sights on the big stuff. Or, perhaps you’re they type of person who tackles the most challenging parts of a project right out of the gate.
Regardless of your approach, I think we can all agree that none of the how matters if we don’t exactly know what needs to be done. Simply winging it doesn’t work out too well in real estate.
Those of us with the DocuSign real estate team like to think we’ve found a better way for you to manage your transactions and stay on top of everything that needs to get done before closing a deal. Our latest release for users of DocuSign for Real Estate PLUS, Broker Edition enhances the document checklists you’re used to by including tasks that may not necessarily involve paperwork. We’re calling them task lists, and they’ll help ensure not only that all the documents are completed, but also things like putting signs in yards and picking up a tray of pastries for an open house are taken care of as well.
Before I go any further, I want to make it clear that your document checklists are not going away. You won’t even have to rebuild them; they’re just becoming part of the new task lists.
There are a number of cool things you can do with task lists, but something in particular that I like is the dynamic due date and role creation based on information in individual Transaction Rooms. For example, when you create a task list template, you’re not going to know exact due dates or who will be responsible for completing the task. With due dates, you’d specify the number of days before or after a certain event in the transaction (e.g. Expected Closing Date). To select the person assigned to the task (referred to as the Assignee), you’d select a role such as the buyer’s agent.
When the task list template is applied to a specific Transaction Room, the dates and people will fill in accordingly. Let’s say the Expected Closing Date listed in a Transaction Room is August 10. If a particular task must be completed five days before the closing date, you would offset the date to -5 in the template. The task would then show up in the Transaction Room as due on August 5. The same thing works for Assignees (and Watchers) of a task. The buyer’s agent I mentioned above will be a real person when the task list is applied to a Transaction Room, and if Jane Smith is the buyer’s agent, she’ll be the Assignee.
In the event that a date changes, the task due date will automatically change as needed. You can also have more than one person assigned to a task, and Assignee can complete it. Tasks can be made optional or required, and you can decide if they need manager approval before they can be marked complete.
For you multitaskers out there, more than one task list can be active in a Transaction Room at the same time. You can bounce around as you please. Need a reminder from time to time? You can set up email and mobile push notifications to provide a nudge.
Additionally, there will now be a Tasks tab in the Transaction Room for you to see where each task is in the process. You’ll be able to quickly determine what’s submitted for review, what’s completed, what’s been declined, what’s coming due, etc. Notifications can keep you up to speed on task statuses as well.
So, how does all of this benefit your business? We feel like the ability to customize your team’s workflow in a manner that fits your brokerage can only help make things easier for everyone involved. It also lets brokers control as much or as little as they want in terms of what their agents must do in order to close a Transaction Room.
This is really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the update. I encourage you to check out our FAQs and release notes for a better idea of what’s new. These helpful resources definitely go deeper and will likely answer many of your questions. Currently for our DocuSign for Real Estate PLUS, Broker Edition web application only, we do have plans in the coming weeks to make tasks available on our mobile apps for iOS and Android. We’ll let you know when we get closer to that date.
It’s a big update, and a lot of hard work was put in by a very talented group of people devoted to our real estate solutions. Take a moment to log in to your DocuSign Transaction Rooms account if you haven’t in a while and look around. We hope you enjoy the new task lists and the ability to include tasks not associated with paperwork. No matter how you work, it’s never a bad thing to know exactly what you need to work on, and, if I’m remembering my G.I. Joe correctly, knowing is half the battle.
Paul Koziarz is the Director of Product Marketing for Transaction Rooms at DocuSign, and co-founder of Cartavi (acquired by DocuSign). He continues to work with real estate professionals, and is also focused on expanding our Transaction Rooms solution to serve other key industries. Connect with Paul on Twitter or on LinkedIn.