Though many businesses have upgraded to electronic signatures, there’s the lot that’s still dubious of its capability to streamline processes. This unconvinced group of organizations would rather go the paper way than use e-signatures which are more or less an electronic version of wet signatures. They haven’t understood most electronic signature benefits, and how to make the most of e-signing e.g., in reducing contract abandonment. The result is a hidden struggle in the flow of documents and internal activities. And for those who know there’s a better solution like e-signing, the resulting troubles could lead to regrets
It is “an electronic symbol, sound or process logically associated to a document or record and executed by an individual who intends to sign,” according to Electronic Signature & Records Association (ESRA), and existing federal regulations This makes e-signatures a versatile way to sign documents, and technology is offering multiple solutions to enable you to collect signature through computer, voice, or mobile devices. Businesses can use e-signatures to ensure their user-interfaces are highly unique to the kind of business or transactions they deal with. In the U.S., an e-signature or electronic signature is legally recognized as a digital version of a handwritten signature per the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) of 1999, and the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN) of 2000.
We will discuss some instances when you realize that using e-signatures would have been a better idea than using a pen and paper. Perhaps they will ensure you make a more informed decision next time you have to choose between old school and digital.
Coronavirus is the worst pandemic in our lifetime and social distancing has stood out as one of the safety measures to reduce its spread. Even so, business must still go on. And we’ve seen lots of states pass laws to allow the use of e-signatures. This approach has become particularly popular amid corona because it allows you to negotiate deals and discuss contracts remotely.
Paper contracts can make the process of sealing a deal and signing it difficult and lengthy. It can also take a toll on your well-being and eat into your time because you are not certain about the progress of the contract. Because of the many hands a paper document passes through; you’re left with a plethora of questions. Did the mail service fail to make the delivery? Did I use the wrong address? Has the contact changed his mind? Did I make a mistake in the document? Well, you can always make a call to inquire about the status of a document, and get feedback but you’ll still have to wait for them to mail it back to you. Nevertheless, you can save yourself this hassle by going for electronic contracts and enjoying full electronic signature benefits. Apart from reducing the time it takes to seal a deal. It also streamlines communication and ensures you receive the signed electronic signature by email a few seconds after they’ve been signed. Paper contracts can cause more harm than good in the process of making a deal. The need to move to and fro, picking mail, going through the contract, returning it for tweaks, lots of missed calls, and waits. All these can be tiresome and time-wasting for both the client and the business. These challenges can also increase the cost of running a business. But the worst is 'undelivered mail.' A slight mistake in the ship-to address can lead to contract abandonment and ruin business-client relations. So why not shift to e-contracts when automation is proving to be a faster way to seal deals. These perfectly legal contracts under the e-contract law are accessible from multiple devices. With electronic contract agreements, nobody has to touch any paper, print anything, or make several visits to a post office. There are many reasons a prospect would back off from a deal before it happens, but a slow, unpredictable, and tiresome process is the most common. Electronic contract agreements allow you to seal deals within the shortest time possible. Apart from high conversion rates, it also leaves you with happy customers. Satisfied clients are willing to come back because they know working with you isn't a hassle.
The term ‘paper footprint’ means the amount of paper your business produces and disposes to the surrounding environment. You already know that paper hurts the environment. But you haven’t thought of going paperless so that you reduce your footprint while enjoying electronic signature benefits. Running an eco-friendly business ensures you stand out from your counterparts and proves that your company is sustainable.
Anyone who has rented space for business or domestic purposes knows the pile of documents you need to sign before you complete a deal. And after going through and signing pages of documents, the worst that can happen is to receive a call from your bank claiming that the signature doesn’t correspond with the records. That would mean you have to eat into your office time and visit the bank to verify that you are indeed the one doing business or living in the house. You can’t blame it on yourself because you are only human—prone to mistakes. And we are different, not all can master and use matching signatures throughout our lives. So you’d only wish that if your agent tapped into electronic signature benefits, then maybe you wouldn’t have to go through all that stress. After all, electronic signatures are perfectly legal; so there’s no harm in using them if they are going to make work easy for you and reduce the possibility of making costly mistakes.
Gone are the days when having a heap of files in many cabinets at your premises meant your business is booming. Savvy companies are shifting to digital platforms not only to reduce paper but also to ease document management— make it easy to locate what they want when they need it. You don’t want to spend the entire morning looking for a document that its use is due and you can’t remember its whereabouts yet you have a pile to search from. Again, why buy the biggest filing cabinet when everything can fit on your cloud storage or hard drive? Doing away with cabinets will also save you space.
It is annoying to find your cartridges empty when you need to print some important documents. It happens a lot because most offices don’t use their printers all the time as a lot of things have gone digital. And when it does, it brings an unexpected extra cost to a business. You must walk to a supermarket or bookstore to buy cartridges. And these are the times when you wish everything were digital in your business because you wouldn’t have wasted that time and money on cartridges. The best thing a startup can do is tokick off on a digital note. Create a business that won’t rely much on paper. It will save on costs a great deal— you won’t need to buy a cabinet, extra space, paper, ink, pay for mail, among others.
Because mobile devices are part of your clients' lives, it only makes sense to connect and discuss business with them through these gadgets. Mobile gadgets travel with your clients everywhere they go so they can monitor any changes and make decisions faster and sign remotely.
We've talked of the things that make prospects abandon us before they sign an agreement. Manual processes are too slow for a savvy customer base, so you must upgrade if you want to speed up things without compromising on transparency. Electronic contract signing ensures you discuss a deal without setting up multiple meetings and waiting for feedback for days. Records are also more accessible in electronic form than paper form; it can be hectic to search for a single document in the cabinets of files. E-contracts, on the other hand, makes these accessible in a few clicks.
If your paper footprint is still large, then you’re not compromising your business but also harming your surroundings. You can’t turn deaf ears to the ongoing campaigns about going paperless and running an environmental-friendly business. Plus you are already well aware of electronic signature benefits, it’s time to change how you do business.