Contract and Form Templates: Guide & Resources

Sending out a single document for electronic signature is fairly simple. You upload the form, “tag” the fields where the recipient needs to add their name, address, date and signature, and designate any approvers the form should be routed to.

But for most businesses, the workflow is more complex. In today’s hybrid work world, digital forms, contracts and documents abound, and many businesses are drowning in the volume. According to a commissioned study by Forrester, 75% of organizations process more than 500 agreements every month—and that’s in just one department.

Given the volume of documents flowing through an organization, it’s cumbersome and time consuming to start from scratch each time.

That’s where templates come in.

Templates for contracts and documents

Templates allow you to save and reuse repeatable information for every form, and simply put a “placeholder” for the recipient. This way, all you have to do to share a document is add the approvers and press send.

Using Templates in DocuSign

From loan applications to non-disclosure agreements and rental agreements to purchase orders, anyone dealing with day-to-day form and contract sharing can benefit from a templated process. With templates, every budget approval, statement of work or employee onboarding request is easier and more efficient.

Simply put, templates allow you to save standard messages, fields, routing order and other aspects of a form that remain the same regardless of who you’re sending it to. You can still add, delete and revise text, subject and recipient information to further customize from there.

Where can you find contract templates and form templates?

Docusign offers pre-built contract templates and form templates for most common use cases. You can also create your own form templates for common forms that your organization frequently sends out for signature. This means along with boosting signing speed, you gain a built-in solution to processing and sharing documents faster—streamlining before you even hit send.

Docusign eSignature customers and anyone with a Docusign trial account can access Docusign’s extensive Template Library.

Docusign pre-built contract templates

Docusign has created templates for many commonly used contract forms to help speed up the sending process and reduce your risk of errors. Here are some examples:

General contract templates and form templates

Nonprofit contract templates 

Human Resources contract templates and form templates

Real Estate contract templates and form templates

Financial Services and Insurance templates

Accounting templates

Healthcare and Life Sciences templates

Public Sector templates

Of course, your options don’t start and end here. If you gain access to templates shared with you by other users, you may be able to edit and use those as well. Additionally, you can always create templates of your own.

How do you create fillable form templates in Docusign?

To begin creating a new fillable form template, navigate to the Templates page and click New. Follow along with the video below for the full process of creating a template.

How do you use templates?

Templates are reusable and repeatable. You can customize, use and edit as many templates as you like, seamlessly adding additional files or recipients and adding and modifying message or signing fields as you go. 

Using templates is simple, but may take you some time to get up to speed. The basic steps are:

  1. Log in to your Docusign account, and head over to the Templates page.
  2. Select the template collection you want to choose from (multiple collection categories help organize all of the templates you have access to).
  3. Search, filter or scan the collection to find the template you want to use. 
  4. Use the template to start a new document.
  5. Input the email addresses and name values for any recipients—populating from a premade list if necessary.
  6. Enter or modify your messages to all recipients, and create a custom subject line to differentiate your envelopes. 
  7. Review the recipient fields.
  8. Send your envelope.

For a more detailed description of these steps, support visuals, and additional tips, head to Docusign’s template support page.

Docusign offers templates for common forms, but for step-by-step instructions on tailoring unique form templates, visit the create a template page.

Yasamin Yousefi
E-Signature Expert