Electronically signed documents: A complete guide

Electronically signed documents: A complete guide

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In today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, the world of paperwork and signatures has undergone a significant transformation. The days of printing, signing, scanning, and posting documents are rapidly fading into the past. 

Understanding Electronically Signed Documents

The digital revolution has constructed a seamless and efficient way of handling important paperwork – electronically signed documents. As almost every industry continues to move towards digital adoption, solutions like signing documents electronically are on the rise. But, are electronically signed documents easier and can everyone use them? 

This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know about electronically signing documents.

What are Electronically Signed Documents?

Documents signed with electronic signatures, often referred to as e-signatures, are the equivalent of traditional handwritten signatures. They are used to authenticate the approval or acceptance of a document. 

Electronic signatures have gained immense popularity in recent years due to their convenience, security, and efficiency. E-signatures are legally binding and are accepted in most parts of the world, making them a go-to choice for businesses and individuals alike.

How Do Electronically Signed Documents Work?

E-signatures work by using digital encryption technology to link a signature to a specific document. When a document is electronically signed, a unique digital fingerprint and audit trail is created, ensuring the document’s integrity and authenticity. 

The electronic signing process is straightforward, often involving just a few clicks, making it incredibly user-friendly.

Are Electronically Signed Documents Legally Binding?

One of the most common concerns regarding digital signatures is their legal validity. Today, electronically signed documents are widely recognised as legally binding, thanks to the adoption of international laws and regulations such as the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce (ESIGN) Act and the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA).

The Importance of Verification and Authentication

To ensure the legality of electronically signed documents, it is crucial to have processes in place for verifying the identity of the signatories. This often involves the use of authentication methods, such as a one-time password, biometrics, or email verification, to confirm the identity of the signer.

Benefits of Electronically Signed Documents

Efficiency and Time-Saving

One of the most significant advantages of electronically signed documents is that they save time. No longer do you have to wait for a document to be printed, signed, and physically delivered. E-signatures allow businesses to instantly sign documents online, reducing the turnaround time for critical contracts and agreements.


With the elimination of printing, postage, and paper costs, adopting eSignatures mean significant cost savings for businesses. Find out how much you could save!

Environmental Impact

In a world that increasingly values sustainability, eSignatures are a welcome initiative. They drastically reduce paper consumption and carbon emissions associated with traditional paperwork, making them a step toward a greener and more eco-friendly future.

Using Electronically Signed Documents

Popular Tools for E-Signatures

There are many online platforms and software providers which offer eSignature services. Adopting an eSignature solution such as Signable provides a user-friendly interface and robust security features to ensure a smooth e-signing experience.

The E-Signing Process

So how do you send a document to be electronically signed? The process with Signable is simple:

Sending a document electronically

  1. Upload the Document: Start by uploading the document you want signed onto your Signable account. Not registered? Try our 14-day free trial and start using electronically signed documents in minutes.
  2. Add Signatories: Enter the email addresses of the people who need to sign the document.
  3. Place Your Fields: Drag and drop your signature, date, text or upload fields onto the document.
  4. Send for Signature: Send the document to all the signatories. They will receive an email notification from Signable with a link to sign the document electronically.
  5. Completed Document: Once all signatories have added their eSignatures, you will receive a copy of the signed document alongside a full audit trail and certificate of completion.

Signing a document electronically

  1. Open the email from document@signable.co.uk 
  2. Click the link in the email
  3. Fill in the required fields e.g. address, date, upload
  4. Finally, fill out the signature field, & choose the type of electronic signature you’d like to use:
    • Type your name with your keyboard – it will generate a signature for you
    • Upload an image of your signature
    • Draw/write your signature with a mouse or trackpad

Submit the document and that’s it!

Security Considerations

Protecting Your E-Signature

Keeping your eSignature secure is vital. Here are some tips to keep it safe:

  • Use strong, unique passwords for your e-signature accounts.
  • Enable multi-factor authentication whenever possible.
  • Be cautious of phishing attempts or suspicious emails related to your e-signature service

Ensuring Document Security

E-signature platforms use robust security measures to protect your documents. Data encryption, access control, and audit trails are just some of the security features you can expect.

E-Signature Use Cases

What Documents Can I Sign electronically?

Here are just some of the types of documents you can sign electronically:

E-Signatures in Different Industries

The great thing about eSignatures is that they are not limited to any specific industry. Electronically signed documents are used in various sectors, including:

  • Real Estate: Streamlining property transactions with electronic signatures.
  • Finance: Facilitating the quick approval of loans and financial agreements.
  • Education: Simplifying the student admissions process.
  • Legal: Speeding up the signing of legal contracts and documents.

The Future of Electronically Signed Documents

The adoption of electronically signed documents is only set to increase in the coming years. As technology continues to advance, we can expect even more secure and user-friendly document signing software. 

Ready to make the switch to electronic signatures? 

Sign documents with ease, boost efficiency, and go green. Try Signable’s 14-day free trial today and experience the future of document signing.