How Namely Accelerated Its Sales Contracting Process 85% with Ironclad

August 13, 2019 4 min read
sales contracting

Namely is an HR solution company that processes hundreds of sales contracts quarterly. Here’s how the company’s Deal Desk partnered with Ironclad to drive an 85% reduction in contracting processing times and 100% adoption from Sales.


Namely has over 500 employees and 1000 customers, and its revenue has grown by over 4000% in the past five years. Scaling a company that quickly puts a strain on business processes.

Namely’s rapid growth makes it critical that the company’s Deal Desk and contracting teams adopt technology-enabled processes to keep up with—and, ideally, stay ahead of—the pace of Sales, especially at business-critical times like the end of the quarter.

We recently spoke with Namely’s Cecile Quesada, Contract Operations Advisor, and the Deal Desk team to see how partnering with Ironclad has enabled them to speed up the sales contracting cycle by 85% while also dramatically decreasing the amount of time Legal spends on administrative tasks.


Sales’ reliance on the Deal Desk was Namely’s most significant process bottleneck, especially when it came to standard contracts that required Deal Desk administrative help (e.g., moving signature boxes, verifying information from across multiple sources), but not contract review of non-standard terms.

“Our goal is to have our Account Executives be the quarterback of their own deals and not block on other teams,” said Cecile. “That wasn’t the case before Ironclad, since all contract requests had to go through the Deal Desk, even if they were standard, non-negotiated agreements.”

The problem came down to regional coverage and limited Deal Desk resources. Namely has five regional sales offices in the United States that are spread across three time zones, but it only has one Deal Desk. Prior to working with Ironclad, every sales contract that Namely sent out began with Sales emailing a contract request to the Deal Desk. The Deal Desk had to handle up to 100 contracts monthly, each of which took 10-15 minutes to process.

That meant 25 hours of Legal’s time each month was spent switching back and forth between Adobe Sign, e-mail, Salesforce, and Slack; gathering the information needed to review and process the contract; and downloading and reuploading forms. Each time there were additional contract edits—a common request when Sales offered discounts or amended contract terms—the Deal Desk had to step in.

Contract administrators may have spent dozens of hours each month on administrative tasks for routine Sales agreements, but Sales actually spent far more time waiting for contracts to be processed, as there was a delay between their contract request and the finished product.

What Namely wanted from a digital contracting solution was a product that automated common Sales contract workflows, integrated seamlessly with existing systems, and enabled each Sales team member to be the quarterback of their own deal.

The Ironclad Self-Service Solution

Before Namely began working with Ironclad, Account Executives at Namely emailed the Deal Desk with all contract requests. That created a dependency in the sales cycle that slowed deals down. Today, Ironclad enables Account Executives to generate their own standard, non-negotiated contracts, review those deals on their own, and send them to prospects for electronic signature.

That process starts from the Quote interface in Salesforce and is as simple as clicking a “Generate Contract” button that forwards the contract kickoff request to Ironclad, which handles document generation, approval routing, and signature collection—all of which can also be monitored in Salesforce via an Ironclad Salesforce Object. Namely still uses the products it used before: Adobe Sign for e-signature, Salesforce for CRM, and a cloud solution for contract storage. The only difference is that Ironclad automates the administrative work of contract generation, review requesting, and signature collection.

The result is that Sales is in the driver’s seat when it comes to processing non-negotiated contracts. A few clicks in Salesforce and Ironclad is all it takes to get a deal over the finish line. A process that used to take hours of waiting and 15-20 minutes of Deal Desk time now takes minutes.

The seamless transition from Namely’s existing business processes to Ironclad’s self-service capabilities has been a result of both product flexibility and a committed implementation team. “Ironclad’s ability to fit seamlessly into our tech stack gave us product flexibility,” said Cecile, “and our partnership with Ironclad’s Legal Engineers helped us configure the product to match the way we work.”


Ironclad’s impact at Namely has been significant for both Legal and Sales, with one Account Executive calling the roll-out of the Sales workflow “the single best rollout and efficiency gain [they’d] seen in the last 5 years in Sales at Namely.” The most significant achievements of the Ironclad and Namely partnership are:

  • An 85% reduction in time to process non-negotiated deals. Standard Sales deals, or deals without negotiated terms, used to take the Deal Desk 15-20 minutes to process. Now, Namely’s Account Executives can generate contracts for standard deals from within Salesforce, monitor the status of those deals in Ironclad, and continue to signature collection, all without blocking on the Deal Desk.
  • 100% adoption from Sales. Says Cecile, “When we implemented Ironclad, we had to get buy-in from Sales. That’s why it was important to implement a solution that integrated with Salesforce and our other existing tools. Now that we have buy-in from Sales, we can think about how to make Ironclad work for other teams at the company.”
  • An ongoing partnership. When Namely began working with Ironclad, they were looking for a true partnership, not just software. “It’s not just automation you’re looking for,” said Cecile. “It’s working with a team that understands your business and thinks about your success in the long-term. Our Ironclad Legal Engineer didn’t stop working with us once the workflows were deployed. He’s reached out proactively with ideas for improving adoption and business processes.”

Learn how to fast track your contracting processes. For a personal demo of Ironclad’s Workflow Designer, go here.

About Ironclad

Ironclad is the #1 contract lifecycle management platform for innovative companies, powering billions of contracts every year. Salesforce, L’Oréal, OpenAI and other leading innovators use Ironclad to collaborate and negotiate on contracts, accelerate contracting while maintaining compliance, and turn contracts into critical carriers of operational business intelligence. It’s the only platform flexible enough to handle every type of contract workflow, whether a sales agreement, an HR agreement or a complex NDA. In 2023, Ironclad was named a Leader in the Forrester Wave for Contract Lifecycle Management, as well as named to the Forbes AI 50 2023 list and a Top Company to Bet Your Career On by Business Insider.

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