How Legal can make business easier by automating agreements

Forrester Consulting recently conducted a survey on behalf of Docusign. The State of Systems of Agreement 2019 research* discovered that less than 18% of 120 technology purchasing decision-makers in Legal have fully digitised their agreements process.

Yet inefficient legal processes affect wider business performance. By digitising agreement processes, contract management becomes easier and there are fewer opportunities for error.

Transform inefficient legal processes by moving them into the cloud

The survey also discovered that two-thirds of respondents’ legal departments process at least 500 agreements per month. This department is central to underpinning agreements across the entire business between customers, partners and employees.

To speed up this agreement process, forward-thinking organisations and law firms are pursuing digital transformation initiatives. Such initiatives help to improve customer experiences and strengthen security and compliance. Legal agreement automation software supports smoother agreement processes at scale.

It can also help to increase efficiency and employee productivity while exceeding customer expectations.

On the other hand, manually processing agreements is slow, and puts businesses at a disadvantage when up against the competition. At least 64% of manual agreements have to be approved by legal.

By digitising agreements and moving processes into the cloud, organisations can relieve this workload from the legal contract agreement team. They can also avoid delays which can impact the wider business and reduce the number of manual errors.

In the State of Systems of Agreement 2019 research, 46% of organisations reported delays in starting projects.

68% of organisations say it takes more than 10 minutes to find a single contract.

Benefits of legal department automating agreements



Save time and increase productivity with a CLM (Contract Lifecycle Management)

In recent years, electronic signature software has become well established. It speeds up document turnaround time and there’s no need to print, scan or post a document. The survey reports, though, that the agreement processes either side of the electronic signature remain inefficient.

  • Only 38% of legal respondents feel their electronic signature solutions and systems of record are substantially integrated and automated, compared to 65% of sales respondents.
  • 39% of respondents believe they encounter unnecessary legal and compliance exposure in their signing processes.
  • Only 38% of legal staff believe systems of record such as Enterprise Content Management Systems could be automated. (Compared with 65% of people working in sales.)
  • 46% of organisations said inefficiencies in the agreement lifecycle delayed the start of projects.
  • 42% have difficulty maintaining security and confidentiality when acting on agreements.

A CLM (Contract Lifecycle Management) can streamline and automate a contract’s creation, negotiation, execution and storage. Less manual data routing and entry will lead to more accurate contracts, better compliance tracking and monitoring. Digital records provide an auditable data trail and advanced reporting capabilities.

Reduce manual processes and improve governance with the Docusign Agreement Cloud for Legal

Establishing a strong system of agreement is a differentiator in the evolving world of digital business. Any lack of commitment to digitisation can prevent the modernisation of a Legal Department, while having a negative effect on the wider business performance.

The Docusign Agreement Cloud for Legal simplifies and accelerates the agreement process.

Download the free eBook, Inefficient legal processes: Their effect on the wider business performance”, to find out more.


*The global survey, conducted by Forrester Consulting in February 2019 interviewed 605 process decision-makers in companies with 250+ employees.