Digital signing, versus the traditional "wet" signature, has become increasingly popular in recent years. More and more countries across the globe have endorsed the legal validity of digital signing, enabling businesses to digitize entire workflows and further optimise management processes.
Whether you're preparing an employee work agreement, finalising a new client contract, or submitting an invoice, digital signing can prove beneficial in a number of ways.
Here are just three reasons businesses, organisations, and even governments choose digital signing over paper.
1. Save time and courier costs
Ensuring all parties sign off on paper documents typically entails a number of time-consuming and potentially expensive steps.
First, you must prepare the document, courier it to each recipient, and then wait for them to receive, review, and sign it. One of your recipients may be out of town, or home with the flu, which furthers lengthens your wait time. Finally, after review, a recipient may request some changes, which means re-working and re-delivering the document. The resulting delays can be both costly and frustrating.
With digital signing, documents are swiftly delivered, revised and authenticated online. Transit time is minimal, so business owners can direct their energies toward earning new customers, rather than handling more paperwork. And of course, adopting a paperless solution immediately reduces your environmental impact – an important benefit for entrepreneurs seeking more sustainable business practices – not to mention, lowers your office supply costs.
2. Safeguard your documents with digital encryption
In addition to improved efficiency, digital signing beats paper when it comes to security. The digital signing software you use to create the signature will ensure it is encrypted, which protects your entire document from tampering.
According to the experts at , digital signature encryption will let you know if a single character of your document is changed or deleted. Plus, since encryption leaves a data trail which makes it possible to trace and expose any forgeries. By the same token, if a signee denies having authenticated your document, the signature can be analysed to confirm its origin.
3. Track the status of your document in real time
Wondering whether the contract you sent to a new client has been opened and reviewed, or signed and sent back? Digital signing makes answering these questions far easier than the paper alternative.
From creation and distribution, to editing, validation, and storage – the entire document lifecycle is digitized and transparent. Using cloud-based digital signing, business owners can track the status of their documents in real time, including:
- when the document was opened;
- how close the signee is to completing their validation of the document;
- and the moment the validation is complete, or if a party opts out of the process.
Some service providers also include options to send out automatic reminders to ensure the timely completion of your agreements.
From saving time, money, and trees, to improving collaboration with team members and clients, it's no wonder digital signing is fast becoming the new business normal.
Xero and Digital Signing
Being able to email invoices and quotes directly out of Xero to a contact is great, but what if you need formal acceptance before you proceed? Electronic signatures are legally binding in the U.K., Europe, the U.S. and most other jurisdictions, and collecting a signature on a document (electronic or not) shows you mean business.
Docusign and RightSignature have taken document signing to the cloud. You can easily send a document for signing and complete the whole process without the usual hassles. You choose which format – PDF or Word doc (other formats too).
If you are interested in moving your accounting to the cloud as well as your document signing, give us a call at Inform, we are happy to arrange a consultation with you to discuss your needs and give you a Xero demo- the world's leading online accounting platform.
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