It’s happened to all of us. You’re excited to start a new project, pending a signature on their document. You’re proficient with MS Word (after all, Word is one of the most popular tools around), but when the client sends over the contract, it’s a file type you don’t recognize. It’s not .doc. It’s not .docx. It looks like an alien language to you. Next thing you know, you’ve blown a whole afternoon trying to reconcile their files with your software.
Why should anyone have to do that in the 21st century? The good news is: you don’t have to. If you have the right software and the knowledge of a few key steps, it’s just as easy to add an electronic signature on Microsoft Word as it is any other piece of software. In fact, when you get it down to a science, it will be as easy as signing with a pen.
But it will be an upgrade over the pen. If you use Nitro Sign, for example, you can do the following with ease:
- Use electronic signatures within MS Word
- Ensure your important contracts are signed and tracked, so you know the status of each
- Streamline digital agreements across your business workflows
- Easily store old contracts for quick review
Here’s how to do it.
Create a Signable Contract with Nitro Sign Using MS Word
If you like to keep things simple (and you do everything in Microsoft Word), then you probably find yourself vexed every time your contract management software wants you to try something new. We say: why bother? You should be able to do it right from your favorite software.
With Nitro Sign, you can. Here are the key steps:
- Create the contract in MS Word. This part is up to you. Before you go any further, make sure you’ve left room for someone to add their Signature and Date to the document.
- Once your contract is ready to go, click the Send via Nitro button in the upper right corner. This will appear once you start using Nitro Sign; don’t worry, it’s not complicated.
- In the bottom right corner, click Open Document.
- This opens the document in Nitro Sign. Your next prompt? Adding the name and email of the people you need to sign it. Go ahead and enter those now.
- Your next step is to add the information cards, such as Signature and Date. Do this by clicking your desired field and dragging it to the appropriate place in the document, such as the signature line you already created.
- If you need to sign the document as well, click on your own name within Nitro and go ahead and sign it.
- Click Continue in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. This will take you to the sending step.
- If you want, you can customize a unique message to the recipient. Or you can let Nitro Sign automatically populate this field. Your choice.
- Click Request Signature. Make sure you have everything accurate by this point, because this will send the contract out for approval and signing.
After that, you’ll now be able to use Nitro Sign to monitor the status of your contract. There are a few things you can monitor in your Nitro dashboard:
- Signing status. Specifically, are there more people out there who have yet to sign your contract? If so, you’ll see them under “Waiting for Signature.” For example, if you sent out one contract to one person, you’ll immediately notice a “1” under “Waiting for Signature.
- Contracts to sign. Are there contracts awaiting your signature and approval? Look under “Needs Your Signature” to see if there are any pending contracts you forgot to review.
You’ll notice one final step. A Remind feature.
With one click, Nitro will send out an email reminder to your signature, along with the original contract link. This will help keep your contracts fresh in peoples’ minds and lower the work required on your end. Getting a lot of people to sign a contract can feel like herding cats. With Nitro, you can reduce that work to the click of a few buttons.
How to eSign MS Word Document on Your Device
Imagine for a moment that your client is using Nitro Sign. Since Nitro Sign is a web-based solution—meaning anyone with access to a browser and the Internet can use it—the software will work across multiple devices. Desktop, Mac, Android, Tablet: whatever you use to access the Internet, it will work. Here’s what you do:
- Open your email. Once someone creates a contract for you to sign and adds you in Nitro Sign, it will automatically send a copy your way for a digital signature. Open that email up with whichever email client you prefer. You’ll see something that looks like this. You can’t miss it.
- Click Sign the Document.
- You won’t need to sign up for a Nitro Sign account. If you’re the one sending it out, you won’t have to ask if everyone has the same software as you.
- If you see Two-Factor Authorization enabled, enter in the code provided to you by the contract’s creator.
- If not, simply review the contract.
- When you’re ready to sign, identify two boxes: Signature and Date. Select these fields to enter in your information.
- Click Submit.
- Next, you’ll receive a confirmation email with a link to view the document. You can keep these in your records and—voila!—you’re done.
Why Bother Adding Electronic Signatures in MS Word?
Now that you know how to create contracts and add electronic signature fields in MS Word, we still have to answer one question. Why? What are the benefits? What’s to prevent you from printing out the word document and mailing it to someone for signing?
Well, you’ve probably noticed by now that most people don’t handle contracts that way. The world has gone digital. And if you don’t do the same, you might strike a potential client as outdated.
Even so, that’s not the whole reason to add electronic signatures in MS Word. Consider:
- Using MS Word is intuitive. Many people use Word to create offer letters and contracts in the first place. Saving to PDF and then sending out PDFs, which have to be edited, can not only be pointless, but only cause extra headaches. By downloading Nitro Sign and adding it to your MS Word features, you can create a legitimate contract right in the word processor itself. This saves you time. It also saves you the features of MS Word you like using.
- Electronic signatures are faster. All you have to do is follow the steps above and you’ll quickly transform a Microsoft Word document into a contact sitting in someone else’s inbox. If you get it down to a science, the entire process can maybe take under a minute. On your recipient’s end, it can be just as fast—not counting contract review time, if necessary. This makes business much faster.
- Electronic signatures have added advantages. From security to remind buttons and automatic storage, electronic signatures include automation features that make them much easier to handle than paper contracts. And besides, you can always print out your documents if you need to.
Sick of hearing about it and want to try it yourself? Try Nitro for Free to preview just how easy it can be to streamline all of your business’s important contracts.