Electronic signature (aka e-signature) software lets users electronically sign documents or get documents signed by others without meeting face-to-face. Using e-signature software, users can create legally binding documents for easy enforcement. E-signature software also increases the security of storing and sharing documents, as no one can access documents without proper authorization.
Tracking the status of documents throughout the signing process is more straightforward than wet signatures. Plus, the software provides digital audit trails for easy verification of documents. E-signature software is becoming the go-to solution for signing documents.
What Are the Benefits of E-Signature Software?
E-signature software drastically improves documentation to provide you with multiple benefits. Here is a detailed overview of the benefits you get from e-signature software.
E-signature Software Saves Time and Money
Physically signing documents requires meeting parties involved in the process. Electronic signatures are beneficial in terms of remote signing, so you don’t need to spend extra time arranging signing events. Plus, you also don’t need to send documents via mail to different parties. This software allows instant signing and sharing of documents, so the time required in the process is cut down dramatically.
You also save a lot of stationary costs to prepare your documents. For example, you don’t need printers, papers, and other stationaries when using electronic signatures. This is highly beneficial for large agencies that need to prepare multiple documents regularly.
Besides saving a lot of time, electronic signatures allow employees to avoid repetitive tasks. As this software can handle tasks related to signing documents, employees can focus on other areas to improve productivity. Avoiding repetitive tasks also eliminates boredom so employees are more motivated in their tasks.
As mentioned above, e-signature software creates digital audit trails that can be traced down to the root if necessary; these documents are enforceable should the necessity arise. Also, electronically signed documents are more difficult to forge compared to physically signed documents. Due to the digital audit trails created throughout the process, verifying each record is a breeze. No one can access documents without the necessary permission here; the chance of third parties intercepting confidential information is close to zero.
Storing paper documents is another significant risk because they can be damaged or stolen. Additional resources should be used to ensure the safety of paper documents. Electronic copies are safely stored on the cloud without the risk of physical damage or any other loss.
Sharing Documents is Easier
Multiple parties can be involved in signing a document because sharing documents with everyone can be a hassle. The process is even riskier for confidential documents. With e-signature tools, you can securely share these documents with stakeholders. As all documents are stored on the cloud, sharing them takes a lot less time than sharing paper documents.
The software is compatible with multiple operating systems, so different parties can use different devices to sign documents. Taking care of the necessary documents becomes effortless, even when you are on the go. The improved mobility allows you to use your time efficiently.
Increases Workflow Tracking
With paper documents, you need to wait for other parties or send the signed documents. E-signature software lets you track the current status of documents you send to various parties for signing. You can see whether a document is opened, signed, or pending and plan strategies to streamline your workflow.
How Does E-Signature Software Work?
The back-end process of e-signature software may be highly technical, but what you do on the front end is very simple. E-signature software appends the selected signature to the document required. To complete this process, you need to go through a series of steps.
- Create a document and mark the fields required for other stakeholders to sign.
- Using the e-signature software, you can send your document to the recipients in moments.
- They must sign in to the software using the correct credentials to be able to access the documents. Two-factor authentications are also common to ensure the right person is trying to access your document. Some software may also use biometric verification, such as fingerprints or face scanning.
- Once they sign a document electronically, the signature with its digital audit trails is added to your document. They can instantly send documents back to you for further processing.
- Two or more stakeholders can partake in this process. You can track the status of documents and send reminders to recipients if necessary.
What Features Should I Look for in E-Signature Software?
An effective e-signature software should have the following features…
- Easy Interface for Signing – All levels of users should be able to easily sign documents. This tool should have marked fields to guide signers.
- Multiple Signers – One or two signers may not be sufficient for all documents. This tool should allow multiple signers to sign a document at the same time.
- Workflow Tracking – When sending documents to multiple signers, you should be able to track the current status of those documents. Visual progress bars are handy for workflow tracking.
- Audit Trails and History – All actions performed on a specific document should be traceable. This is also required for legal compliance. Good e-signature software will show signature histories with all the necessary information to verify these signatures.
- Custom Branding – Businesses should be able to generate documents with their branding.
How Much Does E-Signature Software Cost?
The cost of e-signature software mostly depends on how many documents you are signing per month. The number of features available in this software also impacts the price. Basic features are around $10-20 per month. If you want feature-rich software for small or medium businesses, they might cost around $25-40 per month. When you sign tons of documents in large enterprises and want top-tier features, this software would cost around $60-100 per month.