10 must-haves in your eSignature solution
Not all eSignature solutions are created equal. Before you invest in a solution, it's important to assess its features and functionality to make sure it's a suitable fit for your business. With the right solution in place, you will reap the time and cost savings that come with eSignatures much faster.
Here are our top 10 recommendations when evaluating eSignature solutions.
- Works with your existing content and workflow management apps. It makes no sense to implement an eSignature solution – which is all about saving you time and money – if it forces you to change the way you work. Make sure that your eSignature solution works with whatever productivity tools your business relies on, such as Microsoft Office, SAP, Salesforce, SharePoint, InfoPath, AutoCAD and more. Don't forget to consider integrations with your other software investments, like Salesforce.
- Makes signing easy. The whole idea of eSignatures is that they remove the complexity and burden of chasing signatures. The solution should be quick and intuitive – enabling your customers to open a document and sign on the dotted line in one or two mouse clicks. Any more than a few clicks, and your customers will likely abandon the task in frustration.
- Flexibility to suit your business. Reflecting the unique way that your organisation is structured, your eSignature solution should have the flexibility to work with your important processes; with the types of recipients that matter to your business – such as signers, approvers, carbon copy recipients, and witnesses; within a single transaction or multiple; and with multi-language support.
- Align your data to IT and security requirements. An eSignature solution should enable you to keep sensitive documents inside your IT domain and ensure any security concerns are addressed. The solution should provide APIs and integrations with partner systems that: align to your data retention policies; ensure your data never leaves Australia; and ensure that documents end up in your trusted document repositories as required.
- Puts you in control. Your eSignature solution should adapt to your existing processes, technologies, user management and authentication requirements – not the other way around. Implementation should be straightforward; if you have complex systems in place, then the solution should come with consulting support to help you set it up fast.
- Complies with regulations that affect your organisation. This is an important one. Make sure that your eSignature solution is built upon internationally accepted standards that comply with the country- and industry-specific regulations that are relevant to your organisation.
- Enables anyone to validate the signature, even without access to the system. Look for standard public key infrastructure (PKI) technology in your eSignature solution. The PKI seals the document with a one-time “fingerprint,” which is unique to both the signer and the document, and helps assure the sender that the signer is legitimate. The PKI technology also ensures that the signature is transportable so that anyone inside or outside your organisation can use widely available software, such as most PDF readers or Microsoft Office, to verify these parameters: who signed the document (signer identity), why they signed it (signer intent), and that it hasn’t been changed since it was signed (document integrity).
- Works with mobile devices. To get full value from your solution, users must be able to sign electronically using any device, anytime, anywhere – at the office on their PC, at home on their tablet, or in the field using a mobile device. Your partners, customers and other collaborators should be able to add eSignatures to their documents without having to install software.
- Can grow with your business. Right now, your documents may be simple. However, down the track you may need to integrate the solution into your work environment with single sign-on and corporate branding. Before you know it, you may need to send documents to industry-regulated bodies which require strict compliance controls. Ensure your eSignature solution has a depth of features and options to meet your current and future needs.
- Provides cost-effective IT management. It can be helpful to evaluate the total cost of ownership (TCO) when purchasing an eSignature solution. When choosing, consider product cost, deployment, digital certificate renewal fees, training and support. In addition to the paper-related cost savings, such as printing, mailing, scanning, couriering and archiving, look for other cost savings like quick installation, minimal operational impact and little IT maintenance work.
DocuSign ticks all these boxes
The industry-leading DocuSign eSignature solution takes care of everything in this list and more. To learn more about how DocuSign could transform your business, sign up for a free trial today.