• 30%

    Growth in profit margins
  • 40%

    Faster legal reviews
  • 30 hrs

    Weekly saved time for admins

How can a global corporation collaborate across departments to streamline contracting and boost profit margins? Flowserve took this challenge head-on just four years ago.

The 200-year-old manufacturer offers the largest portfolio of fluid motion and control products in the world, with $4 billion in annual sales and a footprint in over 50 countries. 

“Contracts are valuable assets in the manufacturing world,” said Dundi Thompson, project manager in legal operations. But trying to manage them through email, snail mail, spreadsheets and phone calls created a lot of work, rework and missed deadlines that cut into the bottom line. 

“A lot of times, contracts would expire, and we’d just keep working off of the same pricing,” said Thompson. “That caused us to lose out on opportunities to cover costs and enlarge our margins.”

By automating the full lifecycle with DocuSign, Flowserve brought much-needed speed and visibility to contracts while increasing profit margins by 30%.

Streamlining sales contracting by keeping the team in Salesforce

Flowserve was already using DocuSign for e-signature. The company took the technology a step further by modernizing its entire agreement process with CLM.

Sales users were the first to benefit, with CLM embedded in the system they work in all day: Salesforce. Now, reps can generate sales agreements with the click of a button and collaborate on documents in one central spot. 

What used to take days and lots of emails now happens in minutes. And CLM reminds people when their contracts are about to expire so we can proactively negotiate and maximize our margins.
Dundi Thompson
Project Manager in Legal Operations

By reducing the time representatives spend on manual contract processes, CLM freed Flowserve's sales team to focus more on selling and less on administrative tasks, such as chasing renewals or signing into multiple platforms to get a contract executed.

Beyond the convenience it enables, the security of the platform weighed heavily in Flowserve’s decision to use DocuSign CLM. “We have sensitive pricing information that we don’t necessarily want to share with the entire sales organization,” said Thompson. “DocuSign CLM allowed us to maintain its security through Salesforce permission profiles so that our users had the utmost confidence that this data was managed appropriately.”

In addition to limiting access when necessary, CLM also enhanced visibility in a number of ways: Sales users can monitor the full contract process, including estimated turnaround time on legal reviews. Legal ops has a better pulse on the pipeline and can more effectively allocate staff to meet demands. And Flowserve’s internal admins have access to real-time metrics through CLM dashboards and connected reporting, which eliminated 30 hours of manual work every week. 

Securing quick wins with self-service NDAs

Flowserve started out by automating a simple, high-volume contract type: NDAs. This way, the company could score some quick wins before rolling CLM out for more complex agreements.

CLM streamlines the NDA process by enabling users in IT procurement to effortlessly send NDAs on company paper with just a few clicks. Most NDAs can be instantly generated from a list of validated, verified clauses and immediately sent to the counterparty for e-signature.

“We knew the implementation was a success when legal stopped seeing NDAs,” said Thompson. “Now, we have NDAs that flow directly from the requester to third parties and back, which has cut down close to 1,000 legal reviews every year.”

Legal maintains control by setting up an automated workflow that brings in the right stakeholders when they’re needed—for example, when changes to specific clauses are made.  

Elevating procurement efficiency

Before implementing CLM, the small procurement team struggled to find signed agreements, let alone efficiently manage risks and obligations. “CLM made it easier for them to do their jobs and take ownership of their contracts,” said Thompson. 

Third-party paper vendor agreements are seamlessly converted to Word docs for easy search, redlining and approvals—and Flowserve set up triggers to alert people about renewals and other contract-related events so they can opt-out or negotiate more favorable terms. 

Achieving CLM excellence

According to Thompson, the CLM project’s “biggest success factor” was having a digital transformation consultant (DTC) from DocuSign to manage the implementation and ensure seamless integrations with both eSignature and Salesforce.

The DTC played a strategic advisory role, forming a strong partnership that extended well beyond the initial post go-live period.  By understanding Flowserve’s vision, the consultant effectively coordinated efforts and provided valuable guidance on navigating the implementation and subsequent use cases.

“It was really helpful to have someone who knows what's going on—not just at a project level, but at a company level—to help inform our design and build,” said Thompson. 

In parallel with the technical configuration, a Center of Excellence (COE) was created to support, maintain and scale the solution going forward. Consisting of dedicated stakeholders and subject matter experts, the COE established policies and procedures that address general governance, resources, communications and enablement.

After the successful implementation, the DocuSign Professional Services team orchestrated a smooth transition to Spaulding Ridge, a DocuSign platinum solution implementer, to help Flowserve enhance and mature its CLM strategy.

“Our partnership has been vital to running a healthy CLM,” said Thompson. “I can go to the Spaulding Ridge team at any time with a use case from our end users, and they help retrofit our workflow to meet new needs.”

Empowering global growth

In terms of what’s next for Flowserve and CLM, Thompson is looking forward to tackling manual workflows for close to 1,300 international channel partners. Managing these partners, who operate under varying governments, currencies and business models, has always been extremely challenging.

“We’re dealing with a lot of different ways of doing business around the world, and CLM will enable us to create an individualized experience that’s unique to them. Not a lot of systems can do that,” said Thompson. 

Thompson and her team are also exploring how AI can help accelerate legal reviews and get ahead of risks. “We’re really interested in seeing how AI can improve quality of life for our legal team,” she said. “And DocuSign, with its access to extensive contracting data, has the potential to lead the way in defining what best practices look like going forward.”