How to e-Signed and Validate Electronic Documents

A short definition of the problem We all manage documents during a significant proportion of our working hours, searching through folders for documents or email accounts for email correspondence. A Document Management System can simplify the organisation and retrieval of electronic documents. A DMS cut down the time of search operations considerably. By creating a... The post How to e-Signed and Validate Electronic Documents first appeared on Docusoft.

How to e-Signed and Validate Electronic Documents

A short definition of the problem

We all manage documents during a significant proportion of our working hours, searching through folders for documents or email accounts for email correspondence.

A Document Management System can simplify the organisation and retrieval of electronic documents. A DMS cut down the time of search operations considerably. By creating a structured filing system with which your business is familiar, these systems help make it easy to file and archive documents, and you do not have to remember how to navigate to a folder in the file explorer.

Validating and approving documents is a crucial part of many workflow processes; companies require signatures from stakeholders as proof of validation for contracts, sign-off, and counter signatures from multiple directors for many different reasons. However, the signing process can complicate the management of these electronic documents. In essence, the workflow lengthens when users have to print out electronic documents so they can be signed manually. After signing, if the documents need to be digitised, they must be scanned and stored back on the file server or system being used.

Electronic signatures simplify the complete validation process. Instead of marking a document and applying a physical signature, e-signing lets you validate documents electronically. Essentially, you apply an e-signature that places a picture of your signature on a document.

From the very early years of uncertainty, e-signatures are now recognised and legal in most countries, but each will normally have its own rules for use. For the United Kingdom, search the government website for more information.

Benefits

The use of electronic signatures brings many benefits. By removing the physical logistics of signing documents, general business and life, in general, is made much easier, particularly considering the adoption of hybrid working.

  1. One of the key advantages of electronic signatures is they save time. Instead of having to arrange a meeting in person or sending documents in the post, you can now send a link that takes the users to a web page where the recipient can sign the document electronically.
  2. As indicated above, e-signatures are legal.
  3. They are difficult to forge when compared to traditional handwritten signatures. When a document is e-signed, it is generally appended with information to digitally certify the identity of the signatory.
  4. In many cases, if a document is e-signed and alterations have been after signature, it is possible to show the authorisation is no longer valid. This feature makes it very difficult to tamper with documents that have been signed automatically. 
  5. Unlike digital documents, paper documents can get lost or stolen and are subject to the risk of physical damage over time.
  6. Signing documents electronically is a convenient process. One or more documents can be sent to one or many people for e-signature, in different time zones.
  7. Access to documents is only possible to authorised users via a login and dual authentication.
  8. E-signatures can be protected with biometric authentication methods, passcodes, two-factor authentication, etc for additional safety.
  9. The facility to sign anywhere, anytime using a mobile or PC, in the office or home, e-signatures provide clients with access to their documents for signature quickly, without the need to print or scan. This helps improve customer loyalty and your business.
  10. When using physical or traditional signatures, both senders and recipients need to print and scan documents, and this uses a lot of paper and other resources!

Validating or signing off documents internally

Docusoft provides several ways for internal staff members to validate documents when needed. Internal users can set up their e-signature within the system so that they can validate and e-sign documents that they need. In addition, there is a process for approval using document workflows where a user can validate approval against a document and details of the approval are stored in the audit trail for the document within the system.

Validation or signing off documents by clients

Docusoft Portal facilitates an easy and secure exchange of documents between you and your clients. Either party can upload and receive documents securely through this encrypted channel. The process is not complicated. You create a message and upload a document. Once the document is uploaded, if you need it to be signed you can decide to use a signature template for commonly sent documents, or customise the e-signature placement and decide who should sign the document(s). Both templates and custom signings offer the addition of adding predefined fields for the client’s name and date/time stamp fields that will be filled automatically when the user signs. 

When the client first starts using the Portal, they will need to set up their personal profile, and this includes their signature, and how they would like it to be displayed on documents e-signed using the client portal. Docusoft provides three options to set up signatures, the clients can either upload a picture of their signature, draw their signature on the screen or simply choose one of the auto-generated signatures on the form. Once this is done, when they receive a document for signature all they need to do is simply click on the ‘Sign and Approve’ button and all fields that require a signature will be populated with their signature, together with their name and date as required.

Summary

Document Management systems are very efficient in saving time, space and resources. Signing documents takes up a lot of resources and the process of printing and scanning can be an additional hassle. E-signing documents help eliminate these challenges and makes the complete document approval and signing of electronic documents easy. Get your clients to e-sign your documents from anywhere, anytime and see how easy it can be!

The post How to e-Signed and Validate Electronic Documents first appeared on Docusoft.