• $823K

    Cost reductions in the first year
  • 74%

    Of document-based requests are completed within one hour
  • 5,432

    Active Users

A paper-based system of agreement can slow down most aspects of campus life at a university, from financial aid applications to staff hiring. The time and costs involved with these processes aren’t always obvious, but they can be significant. The University of Colorado Boulder found this to be true after launching its paperless campus initiative—an extensive revamp of the institution’s systems and processes to make them more accessible, efficient and student-centric.

CU Boulder serves 31,000 students and employs 6,000 faculty and staff. Three years ago, the university began digitizing a wide range of student, faculty and staff interactions. The goal was to become a paperless campus by modernizing its system of agreement.

Along with improving security and automating workflows, the school wanted to boost experience for student services, including admissions and graduation, and chose DocuSign to realize its paperless goals. “We wanted to build processes that are online and digital,” according to Mark Diekoff, Program Manager for Business Development and Content Services. 

DocuSign integrations shake up the status quo and digitize services

CU Boulder implemented DocuSign eSignature to digitize their workflows, starting with the human resources department, which was rife with paper-heavy processes. After achieving excellent results there, the digitization project quickly expanded to other departments. 

Diekoff’s team went beyond simply replacing paper systems with digital ones. Instead, they used the project as an opportunity to evaluate systems and processes overall. “We went into departments and analyzed business processes that hadn’t been looked at in a long time,” he said. “We asked questions like, ‘Why are you doing it this way?” The project became an opportunity to streamline business processes and increase effectiveness, all while moving to a time-saving and cost-effective digital system of agreement.

DocuSign’s APIs and pre-built integrations with a range of other cloud solutions were important to CU Boulder’s effort to go paperless, but it was DocuSign’s integration with Salesforce that was particularly critical.

We now use DocuSign for basically everything on campus. Any process you can imagine that needs to be initiated and approved across the campus can be digitized.
Mark Diekoff
Program Manager, Business development and content services
University of Colorado Boulder

With the digital system of agreement now in place at CU Boulder, students can submit electronic signatures without users having to leave the platform they’re using. To apply for a change of major, for example, a student simply clicks on a link within Salesforce that opens a DocuSign form for eSignature, and the completed form is automatically saved back in Salesforce—no paper forms or office visits required. 

A campus-wide transformation

Three years into the move towards a digital system of agreement and paperless campus, CU Boulder completes the majority of document-based requests within six hours—in fact, 74 percent of those requests are completed in under an hour.

With 5,432 active users and over a million pages sent through CU Boulder’s digital system, the university saved $823,000 during the first year after implementation. And, because processes are more efficient for all parties involved, student and employee experience has improved dramatically.

“We now use DocuSign eSignature for basically everything on campus,” he said. “That includes facility management, event management, academic suspension, applicant tracking, grading and much more. Any process that you can imagine that needs to be initiated and approved across the campus can be digitized,” Diekoff says.