Electronic/digital contracts and digital signatures or an e-signature solution is the only effective way of conducting business towards growth and sustainable development.
Honestly, traditional signatures and papers are soon going to go out of the trend. It is not a harsh statement, but a practical observation derived on the basis of the performance and changes in the business world across the globe for a few years. The present pandemic has changed a lot in the world. It has not only affected our lifestyle, but even businesses and organizations are forced to think differently from their traditional working methods. Contactless transactions, virtual meetings, online payments, online education, COVID-19 outbreak has literally pushed us all towards the future with a great thrust. And digitization is a crucial part of this change.
If there was any time or period in which we all, as humans are supposed to go online or paperless, it is 2021. The pandemic has taught us enough to perform effectively without feeling a need to be present physically everywhere. Among all this transition, document signing software is gaining a strong foot in the market. Affordable Online Signature Pricing is one of the reasons behind it too. Most of us are more than ready to stick to the contactless transactions.
Let Us Explore the Reasons for Which We Can Switch to Online Document Signing in 2021.
Robust Laws Are Being Made to Support Online Contract Signing
Every transaction has a value and validity if it is supported by the law. Hence, one of the crucial reasons for switching to the use of an e-signature solution is the laws that are being made in many countries across the world to validate the use of digital signatures across the sectors of the economy. Even government agencies are not behind in this. In some cases, the government of the country has made it mandatory to use online contracts or Digital Signature Solutions to complete the transactions in order to avoid direct contact with a person/object and stand a risk of exposure to the coronavirus.
To take an example, let us look at the news of June 25, 2020, where a district judge said that the process of collecting signatures for legislative nominees must switch to digital modes from wet signatures to reduce direct contact with any person during the pandemic. Following this ruling, the Rhode Island Board of Elections and the state secretary has to allow the candidates to get signatures via post or an app for signing documents.
A similar ruling passed in Idaho about the collection of signatures for ballots. Colorado and Louisiana have also accepted a law allowing remote notarization of online documents via digital signatures. As far as the healthcare records are concerned, they are going digital too. In Northern Ireland, The Minister of Health has announced in June 2020 that the healthcare sector will be transformed and digitization of all paperwork will be done. Considering how many people have to suffer due to a delay in sharing or approval of records, or incompatible data, and the amount of risk the patients are exposed to, the digitization of the paperwork is surely going to benefit. Many more countries are soon going to follow the same path.
In case you own a business that assists the medical sector, such as insurance or medical benefits providers, digitizing the paperwork will provide more security, accuracy and speed to the process. It will put you in a better spot in the future market when digital contracts will be more usual. The amount you spend today and the transition you go through in the present saves you from the struggle of tomorrow.
Employees Have Always Preferred Remote Work
Even before the pandemic, many workers were willing to work remotely or from the comfort of their home. Many were ready to quit the full-time job and work as a freelancing professional to enjoy the freedom of working from anywhere at any time.
In 2019, in the month of September, Owl Labs conducted a study which showed that more than a third of the studied population was happily ready to work from home with a cut of 5% in their salary if needed.. 25% of the people said they do not mind a 10% deduction in the pay if they are allowed to work from home. On the other hand, 20% of the studied population was ready to accept more than 10% cut in the payment to work remotely. This survey was conducted way before anyone of us had even heard of Coronavirus.
Remote Work Demands Digital Signatures
Even before the virus outbreak forced the world to work from home, the remote work trend was already in motion. Many companies, especially from the IT sector were flexible towards their employees working remotely. Companies were adopting this work method to save infrastructure cost and utility cost. Plus, there were reports showing that those employees who work from home offer better productivity. Since then the use of document signing software is recommended. The outbreak of Coronavirus pushed this trend forward, and now most of the people and organizations across the world are open to digital signature and paperless transactions.
If your organization is still using physical paperwork, you are not walking with the time and it is going to hamper your relations with the stakeholders of the business sooner or later; be it your employees, investors, creditors, customers, suppliers, partners, etc. If you are thinking that an e-signature solution is a temporary craze, you need to rethink. getAbstract conducted a national survey as per which most of the US employees prefer to work remotely once the lockdown is over.
There Is an Annual Increase in the Number of People Who Are Working From Home
Let us pay attention to the report of 2017 published by a joint venture of Global Workplace Analytics and FlexJobs, named “State of Telecommuting in the U.S. Employee Workforce”. The report has also used the data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the U.S. Census Bureau. This is around 3 years before the world witnessed the pandemic and its consequences. The report showed that from 2005 to 2017 the number of people working from home has doubled. From 1.8 million in 2005 it has gone to 3.9 million in 2017. The statistic is of the US only. After the COVID-19 impact, the experts believe that the growth would jump from 30% to 65% in the next 5 years. If the remote work is increasing, it means that the paperwork has to be performed remotely for which it has to be digitized. No one can deny this fact. If you wish your employees to be more productive, connected and focused, you have to take all the necessary steps to ensure that their work-from-home experience is positive.
The Younger Generation is Techno-Savvy.
We do not miss the fact that the millennials or Gen X population of the present world are surrounded by technology more than it is surrounded by humans. They play on mobiles, they shop on mobile, they order food through mobiles, they are studying through mobiles. Right from making notes to preparing presentations, everything is done through their tablet or smartphones. They do not like delay or slow processing time. They have hardly used printers. They most probably do not find a need to use it. Every transaction they perform in paper-less. If this is the present in the world, you can imagine the future and get an idea of how much digitization is going to impact the world.
Paperwork is Costly and Affects the Environment
We use paper at the cost of the environment's safety. This is a well known and accepted fact. Plus, with physical paperwork comes printing cost, mailing cost, fax, stationery costs and more.
Here are a few statistics which will motivate you to switch to online contract and use a paid or free electronic signature app:
Of all the business wastes, 50% is of paper.
42% of the total wood harvest in the world is for paper products.
Offices (US) use 12.2 trillion sheets of paper annually.
E-Signature Solution is Safer
2021 is a perfect year to adopt online contracts because it is safer, and ensures authenticity. The technology of encryption has improved than before and it is possible to track the progress of the document in real-time. Transparency is given the due importance and hence advanced technologies are used to ensure non-interference. Any reliable app for signing documents comes with an SSL certificate.
E-signature solution is gaining due recognition and rightfully so. These solutions are accurate, faster, safer, easier and simpler when it comes to closing a contract/deal or performing any other documentation process. Right from the ESIGN Act, 2000 of the US, many countries and groups of nations have formalized laws to ensure that the use of electronic signatures increases and the world moves faster without compromising the safety.
2021 is the perfect year to embrace all the new changes as they have been made by the people/authorities to help us survive and ensure sustainable development or life-style.