We are now a digital world. Businesses and individuals are increasingly adopting digital and remote working practices whilst needing to remain constantly connected with others. The Covid-19 pandemic has placed increasing demand on finding solutions to limit the interactions that we make in-person.  Not to mention the impact that printing and sending documents to be signed has on the environment. From large corporate law firms to small independent businesses run on social media to private individuals signing personal documents… everyone who’s anyone is going paperless! Don’t get left behind, find an app that provides a digital signature solution that is suitable for you but…

Ask yourself these 5 questions before making your decision.

Will this App suit my needs?

Complex signature applications and services often accompanied with a heavy price tag may seem impressive and could be the right way to go if you are a larger corporation with the budget for implementation and training. However, the most worthwhile investments should have an intuitive, easy to follow user interface no matter whether you are signing simple documents once per week or dealing daily with more complicated workflows. Choose an app which fits in with your needs, your business and is accessible to users at all levels.

Will I (and others) be able to use the app?

It seems obvious but whatever the reason for use, the app you choose needs to be accessible for all users regardless of knowledge or experience. The key thing to think about is how straight forward is the user journey. Think about the process of scanning and uploading your documents including file types that are supported, being able to quickly copy and duplicate documents, the options available for you to edit documents, how easy it is to create or upload signatures, consider which digital devices are compatible with the app aside from your phone, are you able to sign documents whilst offline, think about whether you may need to share documents with others and the convenience for them to co-sign. You need to consider the entire experience of using the app both for yourself and others before committing.

Can I integrate the app with external platforms?

You should be able to integrate Email and cloud storage services that you use such as Dropbox and Google Drive to make it easy for you to access files and documents to upload. This will also make it easier for you to share signed documents with others and save them to these platforms to access later.

Are my documents secure?

Aside from how to use the App to sign documents, your main concern is likely to be keeping your documents safe and protecting your data. It’s always advisable to ensure that you read and understand the Privacy Policy thoroughly to ensure a good fit for you. A good place to start is to check that Face ID and passcode options are available to you so that your documents will be kept safe on your phone. Always check that documents are protected by SSL encryption when they are both shared and stored to protect your data. If you are planning on using an app where multi-party signature is a feature it would also be wise to ensure that a legally valid audit trail is recorded.

Is the signature legally binding?

Always ensure that a digital audit trail is available and that you can prove the legitimacy of the signatures. Who, when and where is the key information and the audit trail should show the name, timestamp and IP address of all signatories. Make sure that you check compliance with laws and regulations in the relevant country and the ESIGN act.