DocuWare Survey Indicates Many Still Reluctant to Use E-Signatures

DocuWare, a provider of cloud-based solutions for document-management and workflow automation and a subsidiary of Ricoh Company, today released findings from its latest survey on the use of electronic signatures (e-signatures). The firm says the survey indicates that despite the convenience and efficiency of electronic signatures, many organizations in the United States have not yet fully implemented the technology, due to myths and misunderstandings.

The survey of over 1,200 business users revealed that businesses overwhelmingly cited efficiency and speed as the top reasons for adopting electronic signatures. But DocuWare says organizations are still missing out on these benefits, with most not having fully adopted the technology. DocuWare’s survey examines why this is the case and its ebook demonstrates how businesses can implement e-signatures for themselves and be ready for a hybrid workplace.

DocuWare President Dr. Michael Berger commented: “Electronic signatures are no longer a ‘good to have’ but a vital tool to maintain business continuity. At DocuWare we can help organizations fully embrace the benefits of secure electronic signatures, enabling organizations to seamlessly and securely complete workflow documents anytime, anywhere, and on any device.”

The survey indicated that while over 80 percent of respondents indicated they use electronic signatures at least some of the time, they don’t use them as much as they could. DocuWare’s survey shows that the main obstacles to fully implementing this technology are due to misconceptions and misunderstandings about security, technology, compliance, or forgery.

Among survey respondents, 24.6 percent said the rarely used electronic signatures; 33.7 percent said they sometimes used electronic signatures; 0.2 percent said they don’t know what electronic signatures are; 7.5 percent said they never used electronic signatures; and 25.7 percent said they used electronic signatures many times in their workflow.

 Key survey findings include:

  • Around 44 percent of U.S. respondents cited cyber-security issues as the biggest risk for electronic signatures. However, DocuWare says electronic signatures are more secure than paper documents and the use of quality third-party digital signature products, such as those offered by DocuWare, helps to fully secure an organization’s information and signature processes.
  • 12 percent of respondents said the biggest roadblock to electronic signature use in their business was a steep learning curve. However, DocuWare says digital signature tools are as easy to use as an app on your device, and where there may be some setup required to first implement the technology, DocuWare can provide implementation assistance.
  •  29 percent of U.S. respondents noted that changing legal requirements or noncompliance was a factor in implementing electronic signatures. DocuWare says electronic signatures are now being used in all manner of industries, including highly regulated fields such as healthcare and finance. The company says it can work with businesses to understand compliance needs and ensure any document management solutions implemented are in line with those requirements.
  • 38 percent of U.S. respondents reported being worried about unauthorized signatures. However, DocuWare it’s much more likely to get an unauthorized signature with pen-and-paper processes. With an electronic signature, someone must prove that they are who they say they are before they can sign the document. And then the signature and the document are locked in place and can’t be altered, creating a lasting record of the signature.

More information on the survey is available here.

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