Businesses today face a diverse array of challenges as they attempt to stay competitive and operate efficiently in a changing economic landscape. From dealing with consumer trust to growing consumer expectations, the rise of e-commerce has added a layer of complexity to old problems. The adoption of digital signatures has helped businesses tackle these challenges by streamlining administrative functions and reducing costs. Not only has digital signatures helped companies to save money, but it has also boosted trust and security. If you’re looking to adopt a more secure way of interacting with users and partners, read on to learn seven key ways digital signatures save money and time in business.
9 ways digital signatures save time and money
Save time signing up new customers
Most companies enter new markets to build long-term relationships with existing customers and attract new ones. When customers sign up for your service or products, they expect that they’ll receive the same level of service they received from their previous provider. In other words, you want to make sure you fulfill the same obligations to your existing customers that you’ve promised your new customers. When these customers seek to open a new account, they usually do so by filling out a form or submitting a request for information. The information they provide is almost always manually verified and manually entered into your system. During this time, employees have to spend time performing these manual tasks. While this may not seem like a significant issue, it can significantly impact your business. For example, if a customer’s information is manually verified, that time has been lost.
Simplify the approval process
Save time and money by simplifying the approval process with a digital service that allows your clients to sign documents in minutes from anywhere. You can upload a PDF, Word, or Excel document from your computer (or cloud service) and request signatures using an easy web-based solution. Once you’ve uploaded your document, you select which part of the document needs signing, then use the email editor to send invitations to each recipient. You will see who has viewed and signed a document and when they opened it—all in real-time! Digital signature solutions will also automatically update the status of approvals, so you don’t have to worry about keeping track of which documents are still waiting for permission—just log into your account on any device (computer, tablet, or mobile phone) to view what needs signing!
Avoid costly delays
Perhaps most important, you can avoid costly delays by switching to e-signatures.
When documents need to be signed on paper, the process typically involves:
- An email or phone call requesting the document be signed and returned.
- The recipient prints the document out signs it, and scans or faxes it back.
- Once this is done, they mail or hand-deliver the original copy to where it needs to go next, which may mean repeatedly repeating steps 1-3 if multiple people need to sign a document.
- If multiple documents need signatures, repeat step 3 for each one!
And as your business grows and you have more people involved in signing your documents (and more documents that need signing), you can quickly get stuck waiting for signatures—both from those external to your company (customers, partners) and internal (employees).
Reduce paper expense and waste
A few statistics about the use of paper in business: Nearly every office document is printed 11 times, and executives print an average of 360 pages a day. Four trillion pieces of paper are used annually worldwide, and the cost of printing that paper is almost $600 billion.
All this printing costs businesses money, but it’s also bad for the environment. A single tree produces 8,333 sheets of copy paper. If you’re running a company with 100 employees who each print just one page per day for a year, you’ll need about three trees to keep up with your demand for paper.
Go green and save trees
You already know that you want to save money and time in business, but did you know that digitizing your signatures can help you save trees as well? Not only is going green an essential step toward making our planet cleaner and healthier, but it can also save your business money.
The need to save trees
Trees are an essential part of our ecosystems. There is evidence that deforestation has a negative effect on the environment, including higher carbon dioxide levels and global warming. But there are other reasons why saving trees is so important:
Trees purify the air
They absorb harmful gasses such as nitrogen oxides, ammonia, sulfur dioxide, and ozone and filter particulates out of the air by trapping them on their leaves and bark.
Trees provide oxygen
One large tree can provide a day’s oxygen supply for up to four people.
Trees help us combat climate change
They store carbon (a greenhouse gas) which helps reduce the effects of climate change.
Save money on supplies and printing
As soon as you stop printing, copying, scanning, and mailing physical documents, all the costs associated with these tasks will disappear. No more buying paper and ink. No more maintenance or replacing printers. You won’t spend time shopping for supplies or driving them around town, and you’ll save on postage and electricity.
Don’t stress the next time you’re on a business trip and realize you’ve forgotten an important document at home that requires your signature, don’t stress! With digital signatures in place, your absence will no longer be an issue because anyone can sign from anywhere at any time without having to print anything out and mail it back to you physically.
Minimizing your carbon footprint
Reducing paper use saves not only money and time but also reduces your carbon footprint. While the world has been shifting towards a paperless society for years now, this shift is still very much a work in progress. Companies are constantly sending each other paperwork that needs to be printed, signed, scanned, and sent back. That’s a lot of wasted energy on both ends of the spectrum!
If you run your business on digital signatures, you can save the environment by eliminating all that wastefulness. This means fewer trees need to be cut down, and more forests will be left standing (and absorbing CO2). Additionally, less paper means less fuel is used to print documents and deliver them across the country or around the world.
Save time by removing manual tasks involved in the approval process
Digital signatures can help your business save time by removing the manual tasks involved in the approval process. You won’t have to spend time printing, signing, scanning, and storing documents or tracking down colleagues for their signatures.
Documents are signed online, so there’s no need to wait for mail delivery, track people down to get documents signed, or perform document processing tasks like mail merging. Instead of manually performing these repetitive actions that take a lot of time and effort, you can automate these tasks with digital signatures, free up employees from mundane work and allow them to focus on strategic projects that drive your business forward.
Build trust with clients through a simple, secure solution
A big part of building a relationship with clients is establishing trust. Trust can be tricky since it can grow or dissipate very quickly. Because of this, you want to do everything in your power to make sure your clients feel comfortable and secure working with you and your business. Using digital signature technology is a great way to get started on building long-term client relationships. One of the best parts about using digital signatures is that they are completely secure and keep the document safe for both parties involved in the exchange. This makes clients feel more comfortable signing their documents digitally, but it also makes them more likely to become repeat customers who will more likely buy from you again in the future.
Digital signatures have streamlined many business operations, from customer relations to document management. This can significantly impact the speed and efficiency with which your organization operates. By cutting down on the time it takes to verify signatures manually, you can streamline your processes and focus on other areas of your business that require more attention. Digital signatures are usually an optional means of signing documents and contracts. This means that you can use digital signatures to streamline your operations while still fully complying with the law. For example, you can use digital signatures to streamline operations while still fully complying with the W-9 rules. Digital signatures can boost brand awareness and share a broader scope of information about your business.