Signatures are the most common form of authentication and verification. While most people are used to and comfortable with pen-and-paper signatures, electronic signatures are now becoming the norm for many business transactions.
So what exactly is an e-signature?
It’s a signature made up of an electronic symbol, sound, or code attached to a document or contract to verify that a specific party has signed the document. E-signatures are legally binding across the globe.
In 1999, The European Union Directive for Electronic Signatures was passed, and the United States followed suit and passed the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN) in 2000. These acts ensure that a contract signed electronically has the same legal strength as a traditional paper contract.
There are numerous advantages of using e-signatures, leading to their increased popularity. In fact, many believe that this is going to become the standard way of executing business contracts in the near future.
A Greener Environment
With the use of traditional paper and ink documents, a lot of paper is used for contracts and other records. Using e-signature software makes paper unnecessary. Reduced usage helps to conserve trees and keeps the environment cleaner.
A very clear advantage of using electronic signature software is the ability to reduce the cost required for paper, printing ink, and all costs involved with the delivery of the documents to all parties. In corporations, the average authorized employee signs dozens of documents each year. Therefore, using e-signature software, a substantial amount of paper, printing, and faxing products can be eliminated from the budget, saving a considerable amount of money.
With e-signatures, there’s no need to spend time printing, handling, and delivering paper contracts. This increases productivity, allowing for more time spent focusing on other deals and boosting sales productivity significantly.
Integrity Of Contracts
Every step of the signing of a document with e-signature software is verified, tracked, and recorded. There is no way to manipulate or counterfeit a signature, as many security protocols ensure authenticity, more so even than with a traditional paper document. An audit trail is produced for each signature that can be readily checked if there ever is a need, and any discrepancy can be pinpointed.
Better Customer Experience
Many customers get frustrated by the amount of time it takes to get through signing and finalizing contracts, and the gap of time between when the contract is signed and when the wheels are set into motion. With electronic signature, the contract signing process can be accelerated, thus saving the customers’ time and increasing their satisfaction. The gap time can also be completely eliminated, allowing for a smooth transition between agreement and execution of a contract.
Electronic signatures have very significant advantages over traditional paper contracts, leading to an ever increasing number of businesses adopting this technology. There’s no reason not to follow suit, as it is the standard of the future.
Get ahead of your competition, and start to increase productivity and company revenue today with electronic signature technology!