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Sign and Shine: Nurturing Nature Through Electronic Signature Innovation

The Environmental Impact of Electronic Signatures: Going Green in the Digital Age

Pooja Patil

Most recently, we've been hearing a lot about environmental, social, and governance (ESG) in board meetings and corporate governance documents, as well as in webinars, news articles, and blogs.

In 2006, the United Nations mentioned ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) issues in the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) report. The report emphasized the need to consider ESG criteria when evaluating companies financially. The effort was intended to mark a significant step towards promoting sustainable investments.

Many companies now see environmental, social, and governance (ESG) matters as a significant board-level concern - not only due to ethical and regulatory compliance but also because customers and potential customers are increasingly requesting a focus on these issues.

In the last few years, companies and individuals have been increasingly interested in finding ways to protect the environment. People are increasingly concerned about what global societies and individuals can do to contribute to a healthier planet.

Utilizing digital transformation is a key way to tackle important ESG issues. An excellent real-world example of digitalization benefiting both the environment and business performance is the shift towards a paperless office. And there are no better tools than electronic signatures to do this effectively.

So, let's dive in to discover the role of electronic signatures in promoting the green initiative and the environmental impact of eSignatures.

What Is an Electronic Signature?

An electronic signature is like your regular signature, but it's in electronic form. It allows people to show their approval or agreement with a document, similar to using pen and paper. Electronic signatures use computers to verify the person signing and ensure the document is intact.

Digital signatures, on the other hand, are a specific kind of electronic signature. They use complex algorithms, certificate authorities (CAs), and trust service providers (TSPs) to confirm the signer's identity and ensure the document hasn't been tampered with.

Like a Regular Signature but Better…

Digital signatures outshine their traditional ink counterparts. They're quick, portable, and legally valid, and they also reduce environmental damage. Moreover, they frequently use technology safeguards to guarantee the signature's authenticity.

  • Instant, user-friendly, and fail-safe

    Digital signatures speed up the approval and agreement process by removing unnecessary delays. When using electronic signatures, there's no need to wait for mail delivery or make a trip to hand-deliver documents. As soon as you add your electronic signature to a document, you can proceed to the next step without any unnecessary waiting time.

    Using electronic signatures also simplifies the process of signing documents. Because electronic signature tools are portable, you can sign or ask for signatures from almost anywhere globally using your preferred device. There's no need to go through the hassle of printing, signing, scanning, and then submitting your document again. Plus, you won't have to invest in a fax machine just to send and receive signed documents.

    Moreover, as electronic signature platforms require all signature fields to be completed before document submission, minor errors won't escalate into significant issues.

  • Legally Binding

    Digital signatures hold the same legal weight as traditional ink signatures. Back in 2000, the U.S. introduced the E-Sign Act, officially stating that electronic signatures carry the same legal authority as signatures made with a pen. Most states have also embraced the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA), giving the green light to electronic signatures. However, it's essential to note that certain documents, like wills, still require a physical signature and cannot be signed electronically.

  • Environment Friendly

    The process of printing, scanning, and faxing just to create an electronic signature is not just a hassle, but it also takes up time and harms the environment. Every gadget you buy adds to your overall carbon footprint. Simplifying your workflow by using fewer devices is not only more efficient but also better for the planet. The same applies to the trees cut down for the paper used in hardcopy documents. Choosing a greener approach helps save time and reduces your environmental impact.

Paperless Offices - Promoting a Green and Sustainable Practice for the Future

Embracing ethical and sustainable business practices benefits people, the planet, and your business. Prioritizing values such as diversity, healthiness, transparency, and taking care of the environment can help your company attract and keep talented individuals, build strong customer loyalty, stay on top of government regulations, and contribute to economic well-being and market growth. Moreover, these values often come with practices that improve business efficiency, agility, and productivity.

As per research from Unilever, around one-third of people worldwide prefer buying from brands they think positively impact social or environmental issues. Another study reveals that a whopping 87% of individuals are inclined to purchase products from companies supporting causes they care about. Additionally, 76% mentioned they'd avoid buying from companies that don't align with their values on specific issues.

Adopting a paperless office approach may be one of the most practical ways to help both the environment and business efficiency. Going paperless benefits the environment by reducing paper usage in business processes and improving overall business performance.

Many companies are embracing this eco-friendly practice for good reasons. Paper can be costly, inefficient, and increasingly unnecessary with the rise of user-friendly digital alternatives. Conversely, using paperless software significantly cuts expenses and lessens your environmental impact.

Going Green: The Traditional Paper Trail's Eco-Adventure

Looking at it from an eco-friendly perspective, cutting down on paper usage helps protect trees and saves the energy used to turn those trees into paper and transport paper goods. About 1 billion trees' equivalent of paper gets discarded annually in the U.S.

The making of paper is a significant factor in causing harm to the environment. It releases harmful substances like sulfur, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide, leading to problems like acid rain, greenhouse gases, and water pollution. About 26% of the waste in landfills comes from thrown-away paper and cardboard, as reported by The World Counts. Moreover, when paper breaks down, it produces methane gas, which is way more harmful than carbon dioxide, about 25 times over.

Embracing a paperless approach brings significant eco-friendly advantages and benefits businesses. Traditional paper methods also consume expensive space. A filing cabinet of nine square feet can store around 10,000 documents, equivalent to what an average office worker uses annually. Moreover, the paper usage of a typical business increases by about 22% each year, doubling paper consumption within just four years. The transition to a paperless system supports the environment and makes good business sense by saving space and resources.

By incorporating a paperless system for handling documents in your business operations, you can enjoy cost savings in various areas. This approach enhances efficiency by making essential business processes smoother and faster. Managing digital documents is not only easier but also more secure compared to handling paper documents.

As per a study, workers in education and health services can save around 7,049,175 pine trees by switching from paper to digital documents. Additionally, individuals in professional and business services could collectively save a whopping 59,428,600,000 sheets of paper.

So, here's to embracing the digital shift to eSignatures for a greener future - where every click saves trees and fosters sustainability.

DrySign eSignatures - Transition from Paper to PDF

Transitioning from using traditional pen and paper to a digitalized workflow brings numerous advantages for sustainability and accessibility. Shifting to a digital format enhances how individuals engage with content, promoting efficiency and fairness in the process.

DrySign is revolutionizing how businesses handle documents by offering a seamless transition from traditional paper-based processes to efficient digital workflows. With its user-friendly online platform, DrySign enables easy and secure electronic signatures, eliminating the need for physical paperwork. It accelerates document turnaround times and reduces costs associated with printing and storage.

DrySign also ensures the authenticity of signatures and provides a legally binding solution for businesses. Its intuitive interface allows users to sign documents anywhere, facilitating a smooth and flexible workflow. Embrace the convenience, efficiency, and eco-friendliness of DrySign as your go-to solution for a paperless future.

It's a wrap!

Due to the pandemic, many businesses had to start using eSignature and workflow automation tools to stay connected with their customers when everything was locked down. According to research, since COVID-19 came into the picture, there's been a 50% increase in businesses using eSignature and a 13% growth in individual users. Looking ahead, even after the pandemic, 69% of the people surveyed plan to stick with eSignature instead of signing in person.

This digital tool ensures seamless operations during challenging times and offers a more efficient and convenient way to handle transactions in the long run.

Start eSigning with DrySign!

DISCLAIMER: The information on this site is for general information purposes only and is not intended to serve as legal advice. Laws governing the subject matter may change quickly and Exela cannot guarantee that all the information on this site is current or correct. Should you have specific legal questions about any of the information on this site, you should consult with a licensed attorney in your area.

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