Nitro Blog

Why electronic signatures are quickly becoming a necessity in the document economy

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The benefits organizations can realize from adopting electronic signatures and the future of these productivity tools.

When the world was hit by a pandemic and homes turned into offices overnight, organizations quickly realized that how things used to get done would have to change if they were to keep going. Since productivity remained stable, and in many cases actually rose during COVID, we know organizations were able to adapt and digitize many of their paper-based processes to help them maintain their business continuity.

This digitization was made possible in large part by electronic signatures. If they weren’t using them already, organizations quickly started adding electronic signatures to their toolkits, so they could keep their business moving forward. We saw eSigning usage increase 60% in 2021 over 2020. The benefits organizations can realize from adopting electronic signatures are clear – greater efficiency, better user experiences, compliance, and sustainability are just a few.

Increase efficiency

All too often, business processes can quickly become time-consuming nightmares full of tedious paperwork. Instead of being productive, time is wasted tracking down signatures and doing repetitive administrative tasks. The introduction of electronic signatures can speed document turnaround and completion times, enabling people to sign in seconds and complete transactions in minutes. On average, electronic documents can be completed 80% faster than paper documents. This means approvals can be received, contracts completed, and deals closed easier and faster than ever before, and without errors.

Improve user experiences

Given the importance of experience – 86% of buyers will pay more for a better customer experience – companies can benefit greatly by making it as easy for customers to do business with them. Electronic signatures enable documents to be signed anywhere and everywhere. They can make business extremely convenient, allowing customers to sign on the go, at any time, using whatever device they have handy, to do what they need to do in a matter of moments. That’s the type of experience that can improve satisfaction, retention, and even cross- and up-sale opportunities.

Maintain compliance with relevant regulations

In recent years, most countries worldwide have adopted legislation and regulations that recognize the legality of electronic signatures and deem them legally-binding. This means they can stand in any court of law like any other signed paper document. The key is to ensure the electronic signature solution is compliant to any relevant regulations, adhering to the security and authenticity standards that guide its usage, so it can be used to streamline and simplify any number of use cases – sales, finance, human resources, operations, procurement, and legal.

Positively impact sustainability

Electronic signatures can make a great positive impact on our environment. In addition to the obvious benefits of replacing paper processes with digital ones – reducing paper, toner, and shipping usage and costs – being able to sign documents electronically can also minimize (and sometimes eliminate altogether) the need to travel. In addition, it can have subsequent value in reducing the need for physical archiving and all the consumption that goes along with it (paper and real estate), not to mention the added advantage of making documents available online, at any time, and accessible from anywhere.

What’s Next?

Given all these benefits, it’s no surprise that spending on eSigning solutions globally is expected to grow at a CAGR of 26.6% over the next decade, 2021-2030 to $12,721.4 million. In fact, increases in IT budgets are expected to grow steadily to ensure companies are more flexible and resilient in the face of ongoing change. Tools, like electronic signatures and PDF solutions, will definitely be part of the mix – nearly half of workers said they would be somewhat or much more productive with either of these solutions.

Given what’s at stake, it’s important to pick the solution that will deliver maximum value for your business.

To see how to evaluate an electronic signature solution, check out “The Ultimate Guide to Electronic Signatures”. It will tell you everything you want to know about electronic signatures and give you a checklist to help you make sure the solution you choose is right for your business.