No one has time to wait around for a client or employee’s signature on paperwork these days. E-signature software streamlines this process while keeping it secure.
Businesses in any field can benefit from using e-signature tools. However, those in client-facing roles may benefit the most from integrating an e-signature solution into their software stack. Some products in the e-signature category cater to these fields.
For example, GetAccept allows B2B sales reps to quickly close deals by using e-signatures. On-Site, meanwhile, is a property management software that integrates e-signatures into its application process.
Thanks to the U.S. Federal ESIGN Act of 2000, electronic signatures are perfectly legal and binding. They hold identical weight to a handwritten signature.
Not only is an e-signature as legal as a handwritten signature, but it is also just as secure. E-signature solutions provide various steps to ensure a signature’s security, such as:
- SLL encryption — This ensures that the document your business is trying to get a signature on is inaccessible to an unauthorized person. Banks use similar practices to keep unauthorized people out of someone else’s account.
- Two-factor authentication — This process requires an extra sign-in step, giving your document an added level of protection.
- Process evidence — E-signature tools collect process evidence to show what happened at every stage of the signing process. “It does this by recording the exact steps signers go through when signing. [It captures] data about the appearance and order of web screens, documents and legal disclosures. [It also records] every action taken during review and signing. [This includes] checking boxes or clicking buttons to accept and confirm records.” (ESignLive.com)
- Tamper-proof — Once a recipient signs a document, any attempt to change the signed fields will render the signature invalid.
While no two e-signature tools will have the same exact process to obtain and secure signatures, they are likely all similar.
1. Upload your document into your e-signature solution of choice. Some tools allow you to create the document within its platform. One RightSignature review discussed the time saved by loading and creating templates right in this tool.
2. Indicate who needs to sign the document by utilizing features such as tagging. One DocuSign review praised its tagging feature, calling it “greatly appreciated.”
3. Note where each recipient must sign. Many tools allow for more than one signer on a document. One eSign Genie review praised the platform for allowing multiple signatures on a document for a reasonable price.
4. Email the document to all signers. Some tools will allow you to set an expiration date on the paperwork, to push recipients to sign by a certain day.
5. Signers just need to follow their specific instructions and type their name into the specified fields to sign.
6. E-signature tools allow you to track the status of your document. One eSignLive review commended the platform’s user-friendly admin tool He said, “It’s very easy to use and admin, you can keep track of all of your transactions. Archive them, re-send invites to those who still haven’t filled out their paperwork.”
You don’t need to spend a lot of money to get all of these great features. Take a look to see if any of these five free e-signature tools could be a good fit for your business.