Why digital signatures should be on your radar

The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated most companies’ digitalisation plans, but one of the standout solutions might have been e-signatures.

When governments started enforcing lockdowns, it became impossible to hold a face-to-face meeting. As interactions were shifted online, documents that required wet signatures needed to find an alternative solution. Whether it was employment contracts, supplier and vendor agreements, NDAs or other important document, firms looked to e-signatures to solve the issue.

In a new blog post from OneSpan, it discusses the benefits of e-signature technology that makes them a “no-brainer.”

While e-signatures have been around long since the pandemic started – the UK government first regulated them in 2002 – they have since become a common sight. Regulations have become more common, with the technology featuring prominently in the EU eIDAS Regulation.

With this legality, financial services, healthcare, government and manufacturing sectors have started to embrace the technology, the blog said. However, other sectors are yet to expand their e-signature use case beyond basic ones they leveraged during the pandemic. With businesses paying for e-signature solutions, expanding it to other areas of the business could be a good return on investment, it said.

One of the biggest benefits would be improved customer experiences. It is no secret the customer demand has shifted to streamlined experiences, thanks to online pioneers like Revolut, Amazon and Spotify. Consumers are now more willing to switch brands if it does not meet their expectations. It said, “It’s no surprise then, that “customer expectation for digital interaction” is cited as the leading reason for the adoption of e‑signature technology by financial institutions.”

By making use of an e-signature, a company is capable of streamlining onboarding processes by removing the need of printing documents to sign. The technology could even be used alongside a video conference that guides a person through agreements linked with high-value transactions.

There are also potential cost savings to be made through the technology. The blog claims the technology can save an employee time they would spend on menial and repetitive tasks, such as chasing the wet signature via phone calls or emails, or even resending the document after it was incorrectly signed. An e-signature solution can keep track of the signee and remind them.

There are also several internal benefits to be felt. An e-signature solution can reduce administrative processes when going through a compliance audit. Instead of sending countless documents and email chains, an e-signature solution can easily provide an audit, including data such as who signed a document, when it was signed, where they were and more.

One Span’s Sameer Hajarnis concluded, “Looking forward, as businesses across all industries continue to expand the scope of their digitization plans, e‑signature technology will no doubt grow in importance and be adopted more frequently.

“Looking beyond the pandemic, we’re going to see a much greater focus on organizational transparency, security and efficiency. The business world has certainly gone digital, and there’s no denying that electronic signatures will continue to offer key competitive advantages in the years ahead.”

Read the full blog post here.

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