When it comes to developing and evolving technology to help real estate professionals, our top priority is to do anything and everything we can to help you get work done as quickly and painlessly as possible. We’re always looking for ways to reduce the time you spend on tedious activities and give you more time to focus on the next deal . . . or maybe even some R&R away from the office.
The latest update of DocuSign for Real Estate Plus, Broker Edition aims to help you better organize and streamline the way you and your team work through a transaction. With the goal of making your transactions smoother in mind, we’ve added the capability for you to create multiple checklists within a Transaction Room, and we’ve made these checklists a lot easier to work with.
Prior to this update, each Transaction Room could only have one checklist. But, as we all know, transactions go through various phases. In its basic form, you have a listing phase, an offer phase, and a closing phase. The ability to use multiple checklists in the same transaction helps you and your agents better organize each phase, complete the documents required in each, and then move on to the next.
Only one checklist can be active at a time within the Transaction Room, which helps folks prioritize their workflow in steps, and relieves the feeling of being overwhelmed by a number of documents that won’t come into play until later.
Because only one checklist can be active at a time, we’ve broken up the approval process between checklists and the Transaction Room itself. Brokers can grant managers the ability to approve checklists while maintaining their ability to approve and close transactions. We think this will help keep things moving smoothly, and with smaller checklists, we also think it will help reduce mistakes and ensure documents are in good order.
Approving the documents in a checklist can also be done all at once. As long as the approver had previously opened and reviewed the documents, they can be selected and approved together, rather than reopening each and approving one by one. Again, we’re thinking about efficiency.
Simplified checklist editing
In terms of actually setting up these checklists within a Transaction Room, we’ve made it a lot more user friendly. You can add to or remove documents from a checklist after it has been applied to a Transaction Room. You can also arrange the display order of the documents in the applied checklist with a simple drag and drop.
So, how is this easier? Sometimes transactions will require mostly the same documents, with an exception here or there. Maybe one city requires a particular form that the town over doesn’t, or perhaps one transaction has a slight difference in what’s required versus what’s optional. There’s no need to create a brand new checklist template when you can just swap things out depending on a transaction’s specific needs. What’s more, the template will stay intact in the admin area. Checklist editing takes place in the Transaction Room, making editing on the fly simple, while not altering the base checklist.
Some changes to dashboards
Before this release, tracking down everything that might need your attention could be challenging, especially if you were busy. Instead of making you dig through old notification emails, we’ve installed a new panel that appears at the top of a user’s dashboard identifying items that need attention. In fact, it’s labeled Needs My Attention. See, we like to keep things simple. This area shows the status of anything that’s part of an approval process. Of course, the status of the Transaction Room is there, but agents, for example, can also see if specific documents or checklists they’re involved with have been approved, rejected, or are still in the works.
Another addition is the My Dashboard view for managers. Team members with the manager role can now switch between the brokerage dashboard and their individual dashboard. The My Dashboard view is similar to what an agent sees, and it allows managers to link their most recent transactions, see their activity, and view the statuses of open envelopes.
Updated notification preferences
If you’re like me, being able to calibrate your settings to precisely the way you want is important, especially when it comes to notifications. Our newest tweak lets you control if you receive notifications when checklist documents, checklists, or Transaction Rooms are approved. You’ll still automatically be notified if anything is rejected, but now you won’t receive 30 notifications when 30 different documents are approved if you don’t want to. And since we’ve split up checklist and Transaction Room approvals, you can choose to receive notifications about one or the other, or both.
Another change we’ve implemented involves participants who were invited into a Transaction Room. Any person who isn’t actively involved in a Transaction Room is free to leave. As long as that person is not associated with an active envelope or owns a document in that room, he or she can choose to exit at any time. Previously, only the person who sent the invitation or the owner of the Transaction Room could remove individuals.
We’re excited for you to check things out. If you’re already a customer, log in today and poke around. If you’re interested in learning more about DocuSign for Real Estate PLUS, Broker Edition, click here.
As I mentioned above, finding ways to make your brokerage’s transactions smoother was the overall theme of this release. We think the ability to compartmentalize the process will have a positive effect on the way you and your team do business. And, certainly, we hope it makes your life a whole lot easier.
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.