In the age of digital transformation, web3, and the metaverse, there’s something archaic about handwritten signatures. It feels old-world, in a society where the opening of a bank account can happen entirely online, that you might have to sign in writing. But sometimes signatures are necessary, for verification and legal purposes.
There’s no getting around the fact that signatures are still a part of business. This has led to many an organization utilizing eSignatures as a result. eSignatures allow you to get that all-important verification, without the need for face-to-face contact, or long-winded traditional mailing processes.
So where do you begin when it comes to utilizing eSignatures?
How to use eSignatures
Digital signatures were once a simple, one-dimensional tool. A square that you could draw your signature in, a la Microsoft Paint, and add to a document. Nowadays, digital signatures can be made part of automated workflows that trigger further actions. They can integrate with CRMs and business intelligence suites and feature more advanced security and compliance capabilities.
Setting up eSign can be as simple or as complex as you need it to be. You can use the User Guide for the Basic Navigation of eSign. Or for existing Automation Cloud users, you may want to add eSign as part of an automated workflow, to speed up tasks like invoice verification or contract signing.
eSign use cases
The use cases for eSign are plenty, stretching across a wide range of industries and departments. Here are some of the most common:
During order processing, when a customer needs to sign to approve their order, a signature is required to further the process. Utilizing eSignatures means that the lengthy back and forth via email, or even mail, isn’t necessary. And with automatic reminders, or fully automated workflows, progression doesn’t rely on an employee to action each stage.
Partnership agreements rely on mutual agreement between both parties, and are almost always signed. It’s important that they are verified with a signature so that the agreement can become a contract of sorts. Using eSignatures here allows your organization to streamline the process and form meaningful strategic partnerships faster.
There are plenty of ways that marketing teams around the world are utilizing eSignatures. One example might be, in traditional print advertising, an advertising master agreement. These agreements set out the amount of space being purchased in the publication, as well as the price being paid by the marketing department.
Marketing teams may need to complete a number of these agreements regularly to maintain coverage. eSignatures can help speed this process up, and marketing teams could even create an automated process for renewals via integrated automation software.
The operations department requires a host of documents to be approved and signed. Work orders, compliance sign off and delivery confirmations are just some of these service-based documents. In the case of delivery signatures, many couriers use a signed service. This means using eSignatures on the move, which can, logistically, be more difficult.
eSign allows customers or couriers to sign for deliveries securely on their own devices, to speed up the process. This signature can then automatically be sent to the applicable inboxes, and an automated thank you, or support email can be sent to customers – streamlining the later stages of the customer journey.
First impressions are important, especially in today’s job market. You want to make sure that new employees have a stress-free transition into their new role. But the onboarding journey starts long before they set foot in the office. With background checks, contracts to sign, and references to complete, there’s a lot of signing, checking, and approval going on.
By utilizing eSignatures, you can automate the process and have new employees signed up in a couple of hours, where it might have otherwise taken a couple of days. This is thanks to automated eSign workflows that make the signing process faster and easier to manage – they also remove any threat of human error. Using platforms like eSign also ensures that customer data is managed in-line with your compliance and privacy policies.
The finance team always seem to be busy. The last thing they need is more paperwork. Utilizing eSignatures can reduce their workload significantly, by making tax returns, invoice processing and audit signoffs much more streamlined. Let’s focus on invoice processing.
Depending on the industry, finance teams might process several invoices per day. That’s a lot of time that could be spent on other valuable projects. If invoices are fiddly to sign, customers will likely put the job off until they are chased by your finance department to pay. eSign allows customers across platforms to sign in seconds and can significantly reduce the finance team’s workload by adding an automation workflow to speed up the process.
Utilizing eSignature for less work and more reward
There you have it, signatures appear more often throughout the modern business than you might have thought, and digitizing them can save you and your organization a great deal of time and effort.
Nintex’s eSign platform integrates with our Automation Cloud, to shorten approval processes and automate unnecessarily laborious steps. Overall, you’ll experience faster document signing, more security and compliance and fewer errors.