Financial services companies have had to adapt quickly and change their customer service methods in response to the events of the last year. They couldn't offer an in-person experience and people were unwilling to risk going to offices or branches when they were closed, so they had to shift to digital processes.
Many believe that these changes could not have happened sooner. A slew of digital startups has been rising up over the years, eager to take on the incumbents. This would have happened much sooner than expected if there hadn't been a global pandemic that forced organizations to create amazing digital experiences for customers.
eSignature technology is an amazing, yet powerful, enabler for that transformation.
eSignatures can be described as data in an electronic format that is logically associated with other data in an electronic form. They are used by the signator to legally accept the data. It's simply a digital signature that has the same weight and weight as your handwritten signature in a contract or other legal agreement.
Since 2002, South Africa's Electronic Communications and Transactions Act was enacted, eSignatures are recognized in South Africa as a valid method to sign all documents. Despite this, eSignatures are slow to gain traction. This is largely due to the perception of handwritten signatures on paper having more legal weight.
As more people adapt to digital life, acceptance has increased and will continue to grow. Financial services, if used effectively, can greatly benefit from this acceptance.
Customer experience improvement
Opening a bank account, getting a loan for your home, or creating a retirement annuity requires a lot of paperwork and lots of signatures. Many financial documents have multiple pages, multiple places to sign and intial. You can make phone calls, fax documents, or arrange another meeting if a client does not complete a page.
Many of us know the frustration of having to take the time to sign these documents. Some of us also have the unpleasant feeling of having to resign a document that was not signed.
eSignatures make this possible by allowing customers the ability to quickly go through the signing process.
Another benefit of eSignatures is their ability to make customer documentation safer.
Digital signatures make it possible to ensure that all documentation is digital. Documents that are stored correctly are less likely be lost or stolen. Secure documents can be protected with password-protected PDFs and virtual private networks (VPNs). This adds extra security while keeping confidential information confidential. It is also easier to secure redact certain information when you send it through less secure channels like email.
Improvements in internal processes
Another advantage of eSignatures is the ability to digitize customer documentation. This allows for simpler internal processes. The organization's employees no longer need to chase down signatures. This means that agreements and policies can be approved and turned around faster.
This results in time and resource savings, and perhaps most importantly, a better customer experience.
Adapt and thrive
Particularly for financial services, customer experience is critical when it comes to distinguishing yourself from your competitors and minimizing the chance of losing customers to digital upstarts. Companies have never had a better time adopting eSignatures to help them thrive in a more competitive marketplace.