• 200+

    DocuSign use cases
  • $17+

    Per document saved (account opening use case)
  • 5 min

    Time to remotely notarize documents

With roots dating back to 1856, M&T Bank is one of America’s oldest financial institutions. It’s one of the largest, too—with over 700 branches, a footprint in 10 states and an upcoming merger with People’s United Bank that will make it the 11th biggest bank (by assets) in the country. But throughout several mergers, acquisitions and major growth spurts, one thing has remained the same: M&T Bank’s unwavering focus on fostering long-term relationships with customers. 

“The customer experience—and customer journey—are very important to us,” said Sandra Bell, Vice President, Enterprise Transformation Office—Program Manager, eSignature & Delivery. For M&T, the customer experience includes everything from bringing on a new customer to helping them finance a home, start or grow a business and plan for a comfortable retirement.

When COVID-19 hit, customers’ financial needs didn’t stop—and as social distancing mandates brought branch operations to a sudden halt, M&T needed to act fast. By expanding its use of the DocuSign Agreement Cloud, the bank was able to quickly pivot to support customers when it mattered most.

Meeting customer needs throughout the crisis

Before the pandemic, M&T had been using DocuSign eSignature for a limited number of internal use cases in HR (via a Workday integration) and externally in wealth management. Most other agreements were executed in one of two ways: by mail or face to face with a banker at the branch. Neither was practical in COVID times when face-to-face interactions were limited and customer needs were urgent. 

Through Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Small Business Administration (SBA) loans, M&T helped over 35,000 businesses acquire more than $7 billion in critical funding. “With such a high volume need, having DocuSign allowed us to help our customers much more quickly than we could have otherwise,” said Bell. “We’ve been able to meet customers’ needs much faster—and from the comfort of their homes.”

DocuSign is creating internal efficiencies, too. For example, the bank saw a “crazy improvement” in turnaround times for collecting company car documentation. “In the past, it was kind of a nightmare trying to get all the forms we needed by the deadline because employees don’t have easy access to a printer or scanner,” Bell explained. Digitizing the process with DocuSign accelerated the process, making it easy for employees to upload the forms from their mobile device. “We went from waiting months to getting the majority of forms back within 48 hours.”

Ensuring a fast and seamless expansion with DocuSign Customer Success

M&T’s use of DocuSign in its initial response to COVID was such a success, the bank quickly expanded from 40 use cases to over 200, including onboarding, lending and procurement.

With the need for urgency, Bell and her team worked closely with DocuSign Customer Success Managers to identify high-value, high-priority use cases and ensure the deployment was as seamless as possible. That included a Technical Customer Success Manager who was on hand to make workflow adjustments and fix any bugs that appeared. As M&T continues to add new use cases, the bank provides employees with DocuSign University courses to increase adoption across the organization.

Adding new digital capabilities to enhance security and customer experience  

DocuSign eSignature is one part of an end-to-end suite of solutions that’s helping M&T reimagine banking through digital transformation. “We’ve seen a lot of value in it and have received a tremendous amount of executive support,” said Bell. The value continues to grow with every new use case. 

Once you've made the investment in DocuSign, it definitely makes sense to use it as much as possible.
Sandra Bell
Vice President, Enterprise Transformation Office, Program Manager eSignature & Delivery
M&T Bank

Recently, M&T integrated DocuSign ID Verification into its workflow for highly regulated accounts where Know Your Customer (KYC) rules apply. “Collecting the documentation we needed was a huge bottleneck,” said Bell. “Identity Verification helps with compliance on KYC and makes M&T’s life easier." The technology replaced a multi-step process that took several weeks and required customers to come into the branch, show their ID and sign the final contract. Now, customers are guided through a self-service digital experience where they use their phone to photograph and submit their government-issued ID. For one use case of ID Verification alone, M&T is saving over $17 per document and more than $36,000 overall.

The bank is also launching DocuSign Notary in select states, giving customers a convenient way to notarize bank and other documents, such as lien waivers and affidavits, without stepping foot in the branch. “When we found out DocuSign was offering a remote online notarization solution, we were very interested,” said Bell. “Not only is it a reliable and secure platform, but DocuSign Notary also provides an experience that’s already familiar to our customers and bankers who use eSignature.” The notary public and M&T customer are able to meet (virtually via webcam) and notarize the document—completely remotely—a process that takes just 5-7 minutes, said Bell. Unlike a normal videoconference, DocuSign Notary generates a detailed audit trail and includes tools to support the notarial process, such as maintaining digital equivalents of notary seals and journals.

Bell sees the value of DocuSign Notary long after the pandemic is in the rearview: for instance, when a document requires multiple, geographically dispersed signers or when coordinating an in-branch meeting is simply inconvenient. “We’re happy with the process,” she said. “It provides a better experience for our customers, and it saves time for our employees.”  

Investing in excellence

Just like mobile grocery shopping, virtual fitness and telemedicine, digital banking will continue to thrive in the post-pandemic world. “When we first rolled out DocuSign, it was really to keep our doors open for customers,” said Bell. “Our focus now is digital transformation: creating a better, faster, more consistent digital customer experience.”

To accelerate that vision, Bell built a DocuSign Center of Excellence—bringing together a group of stakeholders from every division—to share best practices, set guidelines and fuel enthusiasm by trading success stories. The group spotlights a new high-value use case—and the business leader who implemented it—at every bi-monthly meeting. It’s a process that’s helped drive a lot of fast, organic growth. Sometimes it’s a single use case that’s resulted in a six- or seven-figure cost savings, Bell described. Other times, the cost savings are trumped by something even more significant: a vastly improved customer and employee experience. “That’s considered a huge success story.”