Utah Inland Port Authority restructures work with Conga Contracts for Salesforce
The Utah Inland Port Authority (UIPA) is a state agency dedicated to creating long-term economic growth and fostering global industry connections. The agency oversees and develops strategic and sustainable logistics-backed economic solutions that connect Utah businesses to global markets. In pursuit of its goals, UIPA collaborates with regional stakeholders to identify and support infrastructure opportunities, like developing roads, and rail lines, and building a refueling station. The agency then enters into contracts with government agencies and non-government entities for publicly-owned infrastructure and improvement projects.
Since its establishment in 2018, the agency has relied on the manual processing of contracts. After creating documents in Word, the staff used the “search and replace” feature to add the company name and other elements to the page. These documents then underwent a time-consuming writing and editing process where they were sent back and forth between multiple employees and other involved parties. Once contracts were finalized, staff had to bring together different groups and teams into a room to get all the required signatures, extending the time to close each contract.
A 2022 audit identified several inefficiencies in the UIPA contract procurement process, including:
- A disconnect between cover sheets and statements of work
- Inadequate oversight and reviews across the finance, compliance, and legal teams
- Inadequate contract tracking
- No procedure for double-checking the accuracy of contracts
- Lack of transparency
- Inefficient signature process
In addition to the audit findings, UIPA sought to automate its manual contract processes. The existing processes were laborious and had no measures in place to notify the agency of missing contract elements. These manual processes resulted in inefficient and time-intensive contract negotiations, as well as the manual management of numerous unique and complex contracts and agreements.
In summary, the UIPA wanted a solution that could issue contracts more efficiently, track those contracts from start to finish, improve obligation and spending reports, and increase transparency for internal and external stakeholders.
When looking for a solution, UIPA didn’t have to go far. Marketing and Communications Manager Taneesa Wright had recently transferred from a previous role where she used Conga Contracts for Salesforce. Based on her experience, she suggested Conga Contracts for Salesforce as the solution to meet UIPA’s requirements for time savings, tracking, and transparency.
Since UIPA already used Salesforce as its CRM and had several experts on staff, it decided to go with Conga Contracts for Salesforce which is uniquely, natively built on Salesforce, along with the included solutions of Conga Composer, Conga Orchestrate, and Conga Sign.
Conga Composer will help automate many of the routine operations in creating contracts, such as merging coversheets, terms and conditions, and scopes of work. This helps the UIPA teams generate contracts more quickly, track negations and approvals more efficiently, which ultimately leads them to a faster contract turnaround time.
Conga Orchestrate facilitates adding dynamic clauses and attachments based on triggers set up in Salesforce around whether the contract is with another government agency or with a non-government entity. The UIPA selects an option from a dropdown menu, and Conga Orchestrate automatically goes through its clause library, assembles terms and conditions, and merges them into the contract, creating a draft ready for review.
Conga Sign automates gathering signatures from both internal and external parties without the need for meetings or one-on-ones to collect signatures. Automating signatures with Conga Sign significantly reduces the amount of time lost in these efforts.
"A lot of contracts get lost in email. But now we can track them throughout the whole signatory review cycle." said Amy Brown Coffin, Chief Risk and Compliance Officer. The UIPA hired Conga Professional Services to oversee platform implementation, build the initial contract templates, and ensure successful customization and integration. The Conga Professional Services team has been accessible and responsive throughout the process, providing an extra layer of expertise alongside the UIPA’s in-house knowledge.
As the UIPA currently performs user acceptance testing (UAT), the Conga team is providing an additional layer of customization for the agency. This allows the UIPA to carry on its work seamlessly while performing UAT.
Thanks to Conga Contracts for Salesforce, UIPA is looking forward to the benefits of automating many of its processes.
Looking ahead, the agency also plans to leverage Conga Composer for automating other documents. “We're going to move forward with our non-disclosure agreements, memorandums of understanding, letters of intent, and joint agreements that we may have with other state entities or public sector entities”, says Brown Coffin. “I even foresee us leveraging this for interlocal agreements. We have various use cases that we can adopt.”
Eventually, the agency plans to leverage Conga to track accountability with targeted industries as it grows in the Salt Lake area.
The UIPA is also excited to provide greater oversight for the CFO, executive director, compliance officer, and other agency officials. Conga will allow the agency to include all stakeholders in the review cycle, which is especially important when drafting unique, complex contracts that deviate from standard templates.
Conga will also facilitate closer examination and tracking of contract costs. Rather than tracking obligations manually in spreadsheets, Conga Contracts for Salesforce will generate reports and visuals that show obligations, like how much has been spent on each contract, and how much remains. This information will assist the UIPA with compliance in operations.
As the agency gains the ability to view the entire contract lifecycle at a glance, officials can analyze whether to renew or end the contract, hold vendors and the agency accountable, and ensure all parties are meeting their obligations and fulfilling the terms and conditions. Moreover, Conga Contracts for Salesforce offers the potential to track internal procurement, allowing the agency to monitor all spending not related to contracts.
- Reduced contract negotiation time, from two to three weeks to a few days
- Decreased administrative burden by automating contract creation
- Efficient tracking and signature collection
- Increased oversight into the lifecycle of each contract
- Improved risk detection and compliance
- Transparency into UIPA contracting process
Conga offers many tools, like Conga Composer, Conga Sign, Conga Orchestrate, Conga Approvals and Conga Grid, that are dynamic and can be used to automate and optimize processes across different teams and use cases to support the entire revenue lifecycle. These tools are packaged with the purchase of our purpose-built solutions, like Conga Contracts for Salesforce for contract lifecycle management, allowing our customers to not only advance their legal and sale teams and enhance their contracting process, but also use the tools to advance and enhance other functions of their business as well.