An electronic signature can be defined as an online process clearly indicating approval to a document or terms presented in an electronic format. Usually electronic signatures have an added advantage in that they ensure the maintenance of integrity in the signed document or contract. The person signing the contract is not able to revoke or destroy the agreement or deny that they did not sign the document. Documents signed electronically are more secure than paper documents and can’t be altered during or after the signing event. Furthermore, electronically signed documents are as legal as those executed on paper.
The ESIGN Act, which came into effect in 2000, dispelled any uncertainty over electronic contracts. The law created a revolution in industries that were traditionally dependent on paper workflows. It has propelled the growth and efficiency of companies in the financial, insurance, real estate, and consumer services sectors. E-signatures, after gaining legal acceptance, have also helped B2B (business-to-business) websites grow at a faster pace. Many companies can conduct their business entirely online. Documents are exchanged within minutes and deals are closed quickly. By using electronic signatures, companies can save money and time. They can utilize their resources to generate more business, rather than manage paper logistics.
Other noteworthy benefits of e-signature technology include less dependence on printers and ink, minimizing the use of faxing which can be annoying to both parties, and closing deals in a few minutes even when parties are thousands of miles away. Also, electronic signatures facilitate tasks like e-filing and electronic file and database searches. This reduces time needed to find and verify data. Overall, these factors can reduce business costs.
Every day, companies are relying more on cutting-edge technology to produce goods and services and fulfill common business tasks. In this scenario, they can benefit immensely by integrating electronic signature services within their business processes. Companies around the world, in many sectors, have already adopted and are taking advantage of this revolutionary e-signature technology.