Speed ​​for modern signing.

The global sports brand icon PUMA accelerates the signing of contracts with the e-signature solution from Adobe.

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Established

1948

Employees: 14,000+
Herzogenaurach, Germany
www.puma.com

Only a few hours

between an applicant’s acceptance to the sending of the contract document

Products:

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Objectives

Accelerate signature processes within the global organization.

Promote more sustainable and economical use of resources.

Native and intuitive integration into the existing software processes.

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Results

Contract sending shortened from several days to an average of a few hours.

Saving thousands of sheets of paper and CO2 emissions that result from posting contracts.

Self-explanatory operation in the browser with templates that can be configured quickly.


“Whenever we tell other teams at PUMA about Adobe Sign, people go: ‘Cool, we want that, too.’”

 
Stefanie Decker

Head of People & Organization Corporate, PUMA SE


Act quickly, shape the future

World affairs are changing at an unprecedented rate: Only companies that stay in motion can react quickly to today and shape tomorrow. As one of the world’s leading sports and lifestyle brands, PUMA has long known this to be true. True to their motto “Forever Faster”, continuous change and environmentally conscious action are firmly anchored strategic priorities. In addition to their growing proportion of sustainable products, this is also reflected in the use of ultra-modern IT and communication processes. With the change from paper and mail to digital signatures, the sports company wants to take on the next hurdle on the road to the future. The electronic signature by Adobe Sign helps take them there.

Growing together digitally 

The HR department at corporate headquarters recognized the potential of digital document processes even before COVID — and is currently all the more pleased about having a solution that makes work easier, even in these times. “Going paperless is an issue that has been on my mind for a long time," notes Stefanie Decker, Head of People & Organization Corporate at PUMA in Herzogenaurach. “It is neither efficient nor sustainable to keep printing, sending and scanning so many documents. This is currently more true than ever. Adobe Sign was exactly the solution we were looking for to take signature processes into the future."

 

Stefanie Decker’s team is responsible for 1,200 employees across Germany. It handles around 500 contract processes per year. A lot of paper was used for this in the past, some of which had literally traveled around half the globe. A hiring contract for new employees from Chile, for instance, traveled for at least five working days, in a time when an email brings the global organization — represented in 120 countries — together within seconds.


“We chose Adobe Sign not only because it turned out to be the most practical and user-friendly solution, but also because Adobe offers the best customer experience.”

 
Stefanie Decker

Head of People & Organization Corporate, PUMA SE


Couldn’t digital communication allow PUMA to grow together just as quickly with legally binding signatures? Stefanie Decker’s team and the global legal department, which is also based in Herzogenaurach, asked themselves this question in autumn 2019 when they discussed proposed solutions with the IT team. They were looking for a tool that could be integrated efficiently and pragmatically into the existing systems, that could be operated intuitively, and that could be followed up by means of a status overview. Equally important: Despite the quickly configurable standard templates, a sense of personal touch shouldn’t be lost either. Personnel expert Decker also attaches great importance to a friendly welcome message for employment contracts that are sent digitally.

 

“We chose Adobe Sign not only because it turned out to be the most practical and user-friendly solution, but also because Adobe offers the best customer experience," explains Stefanie Decker. As a company with a pronounced customer focus, PUMA considers Adobe’s courteous response to questions and needs to be just as important as the function itself.

The pleasant feeling of arriving

Following a three-month pilot phase, Adobe Sign has been in regular use in Herzogenaurach since June 2020. Practically every day, 15 authorized signatories send contract documents to applicants, employees and interns, all ready to be signed using the digital signature solution.

 

After the COVID pandemic began, its use was immediately extended to other necessary signature processes. In the home office, the digital tool creates additional added value. “Although we cannot always be on site like before, in-house double signing hasn’t become more complex thanks to Adobe Sign. Especially for candidates from abroad, the swift closing of a deal is an advantage when it comes to giving them the reassuring feeling of having arrived," explains Stefanie Decker.

Wow experience for employees and the environment

After more than a year with Adobe Sign, the advantages of the electronic signature solution have become indispensable. Previously, the signature process could take up to six weeks if something went wrong with international mail. Today, such a process is often completed in less than half a working day. “If candidates tell us they accept, we will usually send them the signed contract with Adobe Sign within a few hours. Many people say: ‘Wow, I’ve never experienced getting this so fast’," says Stefanie Decker. “We’re just as excited about this as they are. It corresponds perfectly to our understanding of ‘Forever Faster’.”


“If candidates tell us they accept, we will usually send them the signed contract with Adobe Sign within a few hours. Many people say: ‘Wow, I’ve never experienced getting this so fast.'”

 
Stefanie Decker

Head of People & Organization Corporate, PUMA SE


The motto of the sports group doesn’t just represent going faster; it also describes saving on resources for later. The environment clearly benefits when the HR department in Herzogenaurach saves thousands of sheets of paper and a significant amount of traffic emission every year with Adobe Sign, because it is no longer printing out contracts and attachments that are often more than 25 pages long and sending them by post. In the spirit of “best practice sharing” within the group, word quickly got round about this simple way of increasing speed and sustainability. “Whenever we tell other PUMA teams about Adobe Sign, people go: ‘Cool, we want that, too.’”

Reaching a goal, then setting a new one

In addition to the HR and legal departments in Herzogenaurach, PUMA subsidiaries now also use the Adobe signature solution. In total, more than 40 teams at twelve Group locations benefit from the added value of paperless signature processes with Adobe Sign. Many more are in the starting blocks. Stefanie Decker also sees even more potential for the digital tool in her own department. She is currently evaluating the use of qualified electronic signature for contract categories that require an even higher level of security. This would enable the digitization of a further 250 signature processes per year — all in order to drive change at PUMA a bit more quickly, and to shape the future in a sustainable way.

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