While everyone hopes that the COVID-19 crisis won’t exacerbate more than it is presently, the reality is that organizations are already weighing on every contingency plan, with a keen eye towards preventing significant disruptions of their operations.
Remote working, or the act of working from home, is growing in popularity; thanks to a whole range of digital tools of nearly every description, from e-mail and web conferencing to e-signing platforms and mobile collaboration applications.
As an electronic signature solution provider, we expect that one positive thing that will originate from this disastrous situation will be improved trust levels from businesses in using remote infrastructure and embracing remote working.
Like we have already mentioned, today’s technology makes the practice of working from home possible for a lot of organizations. But besides technology, here are three other tips that organizations can implement to ensure the transition to remote working is seamless:
1- Ensure communication lines are active and open to guarantee the accessibility of information.
2- Use the available structures to manage expectations: have frequent catch-ups, stick to schedules, gather feedback, and regularly assess the output.
3. Bring up to date your employment guidelines to incorporate remote work. It is vital to outline responsibilities and expectations before informing your employees that they can work remotely. But even as you come up with remote work policies, bear in mind that no policy is a one-size-fits-all affair.
A study conducted by AngelList and Buffer that involved more than 3, 500 remote staff around the globe, remarks two major issues that organizations should be aware of if they are using remote workers:
- Struggles that remote workers may face: communication and collaboration, and loneliness.
- The most significant benefit of remote working is flexibility.
Communication among colleagues is imperative. But collaboration is equally also important. In an ideal business setting, talking over the phone or Skype cannot be enough without the sharing of documents.
The truth is, some businesses are finding it tricky when it comes to sharing of documents online. Some are used to signing contracts and agreements with wet-ink signatures, and now the issue of employees working from home is leaving them in a dilemma. This shouldn’t be the case. Deals can still be signed, and contracts shared online via electronic signature platforms.
Actually, as part of their digital transformation, several sectors such as Public Administration, Banking and Insurance, Human Resources, Sales, and Healthcare, have turned to electronic signatures to facilitate document approvals like contracts, informed consents, citizen processes, onboarding paperwork, and payrolls, just to name a few.
Why organizations should encourage the use of e signatures as employees work from home
Improves efficiency and time management
In so many areas of business, there is a need for speed. E-signatures reduce the number of processes associated with paperwork – printing, scanning, and mailing. However, with e signatures, most of these manual and time-consuming activities are eradicated.
As such, remote workers receive signed documents back from clients and colleagues much more quickly and efficiently. More so, it minimizes the likelihood of errors, which may hold up business operations.
Convenient and versatile
Organizations have employees, customers, and contacts based around the globe. Thus, it makes sense for this group of people to be able to send and sign documents effortlessly amongst themselves, regardless of their location.
Your team members don’t have to own a laptop to do this. A smartphone or tablet is as good to get the work done from the comforts of their homes. Notably, documents can also be sent in different languages, ensuring the problem of language-barrier becomes a non-issue.
Is legally binding
eSignature solutions like Foxit eSign aka eSign Genie allow multiple parties living in different jurisdictions to execute contracts in a legally valid way. Foxit eSign aka eSign Genie complies with the U.S federal ESIGN Act, UETA as well as international laws such as the eIDAS regulation.
Safe and secure
Even during these difficult times brought about by Coronavirus, organizations are still sending out sensitive and confidential information to their employees or suppliers. Knowing that confidential information will safely reach the intended people, irrespective of the crisis we have is very encouraging.
Whether it’s an NDA, sales contract, or new hire agreement that requires a signature, appending it electronically means that confidential documents can be encrypted. As a business operating in the modern era, this isn’t the time to rely on the antiquated fax system or the slow postal service.
Creates a comprehensive, digital audit trail
Most, if not all, e-signature vendors –including Foxit eSign aka eSign Genie- provide a clear audit trail with every e-signature transaction. Every action, from when a document was uploaded, is logged in an audit trail, which is attached to the corresponding account. Therefore, any activity that a remote worker carries out on a document can be easily audited later or in the present case, when normalcy returns.
Besides speed and security, electronic signature solutions like Foxit eSign aka eSign Genie guarantees adaptability on most popular business platforms. For those organizations trying out this flexible journey, here are some tools which integrate well with Foxit eSign aka eSign Genie and ultimately improve collaboration among colleagues.
E signatures checklist
When looking to implement electronic signatures during this COIVID-19 outbreak, the following checklist might be useful. Choose an e-sign solution that:
- Works with your existing applications
- Complies with the regulations, which are pertinent to your organization
- Is tamper-proof to ensure documents’ credibility
- Allows signing of documents entirely online – via mobile devices and the web
Offers legal protection and compliance with relevant laws in your country or state (UETA, ESIGN Act, eIDAS, etc.)
- Is user-friendly to make work easier for your employees and customers
- Provides organizations with complete control over its implementation
- Is cost-effective in terms of achieving long-term goals
Implementing e-sign technology in these unprecedented times may a bit overwhelming to put it lightly. And, still, while it is crucial to move quickly in terms of implementation, organizations should take time to appreciate the specific requirements relevant to each transaction before adopting an e-sign policy.
All said and done, whatever your work-from-home approach is, one thing is certain: Foxit eSign aka eSign Genie’s flawless interface makes securing signature from remote employees and customers, super simple.
Try it freely for 14 days and start getting your contracts signed in minutes, from wherever your employees and customers are.1