It is the age of tech. Every business wants to have it easy on operations, reduce the weight on their coffers, and become more secure than the Gringotts Wizarding Bank in the Harry Potter series. One avenue there is through digital signatures.
Adams, your project manager, signs off on that apartment block construction you’re itching to start. He then emails the signed contract to Joanna, the client who’s in South Africa on Safari. She appends her signature, and in a few minutes, your team can channel their inner Bob the builder and bring the apartment to life.
Simply put? Digital signatures are fast, secure, and smoother than Michael Jackson’s moonwalk as they bid adieu to error-prone paper-based processes. Enticed? Here’s how to get the magic over to your business.
Best Practices For Incorporating Digital Signatures
1. Educate And Train Employees
To dodge the digital disarray, Turn Susan and the rest of the team from digital signature dummies to savvy signers. Unveil to them the magic behind digital signatures, the treasure trove of benefits they hide, and the straight path of righteousness in using them.
“No more paper and pen, Bob. It’s all on the internet now.”
2. Choose A Reputable Digital Signature Provider
Your digital signature push demands a reliable partner in crime (the legal kind, of course). You need a provider that’s the Butch Cassidy to your Sundance Kid, a perfect sidekick in your digital endeavor, striking just the right balance of expertise and reliability.
Suppose your trail leads you towards securing a digital marketing electronic signature solution for your enterprise. In that case, your eyes should be peeled for these hallmark traits:
- Track Record
Look into their past achievements. If you love what you see, you’ve probably got a keeper.
- Customer Feedback
Happy customers? Probably a smiling you in the end. Murmurs and complaints? Look elsewhere.
- Industry Standards
You want a provider that walks the straight and narrow of legal and industry standards; no funny business here.
- Implementation Guidance
You don’t want to keep tapping Maryanne’s shoulder every time you want to sign a document. Go for a provider that helps with the setup and implementation.
3. Ensure Legal Compliance
Are you familiar the ESIGN Act in the United States or eIDAS in Europe? Maybe yes, maybe no. But for the digital signature service provider you go for? “No” isn’t an option. And if it is, then they’re not your option.
Before you sign the dotted line with that company that’s got a nice website and patient customer service, make sure they follow the law better than Game Of Thrones fans followed Jon Snow. The last thing you want is a judge discarding your case because that signature holds as much weight as scribbles on a napkin.
Don’t just take the provider’s word for it, though. Unleash your legal eagles to scrutinize the details. If they give it a nod, then you’re good to go.
4. Verify Identity
How can you make sure that John, who’s in one of the company’s remote locations in Antigua and Barbuda, is the one who signed it and not someone else? Verifying identity.
Email verification? Great idea. Phone verification? Added advantage. In-person verification where possible? Better safe than sorry. So, have a clear process that verifies the identity of signers before opening the door to your digital signature system. You want to work with the real deal, not their doppelgängers.
5. Use Strong Authentication Methods
What’s your password? What type of phone are you using? How about your fingerprint? It’s easy for digital bad guys to fake the first (and maybe the second, too), but when you’ve got these three bouncers at the door of your digital signature system, it’s “not here, not today” to the digital bandits.
That’s the power of multi-factor authentication (MFA), your additional layer of security. With this, only Peter from HR, Grace from procurement, and others you’ve let into the digital signature’s inner circle can sign and send.
Not on the list? Sorry. Not your party.
6. Maintain An Audit Trail
On June 16, Agnes from Customer Success signed a release form. On July 27th, Arnold from Procurement signed for the release of office computers. You’ll see all this (and more) in your digital signature’s audit trail. Note it down. Who knows when the wind will drag a lawsuit down the road like a rogue tumbleweed? Or when your client will deny ever signing off on the property you’ve been managing for the past three years?
7. Integrate With Existing Systems
You want a digital signature system that plays nice with other systems in the house. If it quarrels with the Customer Resource Management Systems or the Data Management one, drop it like a powerlifter who bit more than they could chew. When you get your Mr. Right, you’ll see that the transition into the workflow is slicker than Elvis Presley’s hair
8. Regularly Review And Update Security Measures
Security threats pop up more frequently than a jack-in-the-box. Staying on top of these tech termites requires a regular rendezvous with your digital signature system’s security measures.
Maybe it’s giving your software a fresh coat of updates, or perhaps it’s running a fine-tooth comb through access controls. Or how about throwing a little security audit shindig now and then? By keeping up with the Joneses of security trends and technologies, you’ll keep your digital signature system tighter than Fort Knox.
9. Ensure Scalability
Well, you may only have two clients today, but you’re ambitious. Agnes, the marketing head, has huge dreams, and so has the team you headhunted yourself. Maybe in a year or two, you’ll have twenty clients at once. That means more people, more money, and, of course, more documents to sign.
That said, don’t go for a digital signature service provider that cannot see beyond what’s for supper. Go for those who can grow along with your business dreams. This way, as you expand faster than the Enteroctopus dofleini octopus, your digital signature solution wouldn’t pant about chasing after you and your customers.
A question to ask: Is this solution able to handle an increasing number of users and documents without compromising on performance or security? If yes, you married right.
Convinced about the power of digital signatures? Good. Hitching your ox-cart to the digital signatures star is like stepping into a future where efficiency and security are the names of the game.
So, as you bid a sweet adieu to the ink and paper love story and usher in the era of digital signatures, keeping the roadmap we’ve sketched above is a smart idea. Coupling that with the best service you can find? That’s reliability on steroids. So why wait? Join the digital party today and reap the benefits of digital signatures.