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E-SIGN Day: The History of Signatures

By: Steve Stormoen / Thursday, June 30, 2016

In celebration of National E-SIGN Day, enjoy this guest blog post by Beth Anne Ballance.

The History of Signatures

In your life, every significant moment requires a signature – birth certificates, school enrollments, job applications, mortgages, car loans, the end of marriage, even death certificates. A flourish of the pen signals the beginning (or end) of a moment in time. But how did our identities begin to flow from the tip of a pen?

Signatures, the English word taken from the Latin root signare, identify a person and their intent. They have unique character and style, much like a thumbprint. Some are legible, some are scribbled (like mine!) and some are downright creative. Signatures began as early as the 5th century as a way for artists to mark their work in clay tablets and pots. The Romans used them often and yet it was not until the 16th century when they became more commonplace for finalizing agreements.

Before literacy was widespread, wax seals and handshakes were the standard for settling agreements. For those with financial means, hot beeswax pressed by a signet ring identified the sender. Often times, a face-to-face meeting confirmed identity while a handshake served the purpose of commitment during deals. As literacy and paper became more mainstream towards the 9th century, scribes began marking documents with a cross (which later became the “X” signature we know today).

However, people were still making deals and contracts without signatures, leading to arguments over fraud and unmet promises. They devised a law, known as the 1677 Statute of Frauds, that required all contracts bear signature. The 1677 Statute of Frauds was the most pivotal moment in signatures becoming mainstream.

A little under a century later, John Hancock signed the Declaration of Independence with such flourish that his signature stood out from the other 55 signees. We might have Thomas Jefferson to thank for the actual document, but it was John Hancock’s signature that became a legend and catchphrase.

One hundred years later, it was decided that rubber stamped signatures were equivalent to written signatures and two hundred years later, signatures come in a variety of forms. Into the digital age, several technologies stretched our understanding of what a signature means. A photocopied document can still contain a legally binding signature even if the exact piece of paper was not signed, for example. Later, the autopen allowed parties to sign documents from afar.

With the advent of the internet, it was inevitable that businesses and individuals would want to process signatures online, which led to today’s e-signatures. On this day in the year 2000, the U.S. Congress passed the E-SIGN act defining the use of electronic signatures as the legal equivalent of their ink and paper cousins. In 2010, Congress chose to recognize June 30 as National E-Signature Day.

Today, sixteen years after the E-SIGN act was passed and 1500 years after the very first signatures emerged, we celebrate how far signatures have come – from marks scratched on a pot of clay to a fingertip signing a legal document across a computer screen.

Exploring the Powerful Zapier + RightSignature Integration

By: Steve Stormoen / Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Zapier is a popular service to connect and automate all your favorite web apps. Zapier connects to the tools you use every day like Gmail, SalesForce, and ShareFile to automatically finish simple tasks and make the workday easier without any technical knowledge required. Simply browse a list of pre-built connections, called “Zaps,” or choose from a list of options to create your own custom workflow.

The new RightSignature + Zapier integration adds RightSignature to the list of services connected by Zapier. By connecting RightSignature to Zapier, a sales team can automatically post a congratulations note to Twitter any time they get a contract signed. Additionally, an HR professional can send employment paperwork with RightSignature and Zapier will automatically put the document due date in Google Calendar.

How it Works

To set up the RightSignature + Zapier integration, simply sign up for Zapier and select RightSignature from the Zapier app directory. At the prompt, input your RightSignature login information and approve the integration. Next, browse through the list of apps supported by Zapier to start linking your apps together.

The following triggers and actions can be automated with the RightSignature + Zapier integration and connected to other apps:

You can view the full list of pre-built Zaps here, or build your own to connect RightSignature to the apps you use every day.

Wade Foster, CEO and co-founder of Zapier, says,
Zapier is thrilled to have RightSignature join our integrations portfolio. With connections to over 650 apps, RightSignature users can now save even more time when it comes to document-related processes. Automation lets them send documents effortlessly, remind clients of pending documents, save time on archival, and kick off workflows as soon as everything is signed. That means more time spent on products and customers, while still keeping complete and secure records of every critical agreement."
With over 600 apps to connect with RightSignature, we are excited to see what possibilities exist. Will you use the RightSignature + Zapier integration in your business? Share your Zap with us on Twitter at @RightSignature!

Applied Epic + RightSignature Integration Announcement

By: Steve Stormoen / Wednesday, May 25, 2016

We are excited to announce that RightSignature has joined leading insurance software provider Applied Systems as the first e-signature integration partner for their award winning Applied Epic application. With these two powerful products working together, insurance agencies and brokerages can get insurance contracts, applications, and other important documents signed quickly and easily online using their favorite agency management software.

Applied Epic is the perfect tool for insurance agencies and brokerages looking for an easy way to manage customer relationships and sales opportunities, as well as handle financial accounting, policy, and benefits administration. With the new RightSignature add-on, you can now easily select important documents stored with Applied Epic and send them for signature using RightSignature.

RightSignature is already a favorite tool in the insurance industry, earning rave reviews from carriers, brokers, and agencies such as RCI Insurance by helping reduce document turnaround time, minimize errors and omissions, and providing automated reminders and document return. Using RightSignature and Applied Epic together, your organization will be able to get your most important documents signed in minutes with easy-to-use, legally binding electronic signatures.

Michael Howe, Senior Vice President of Product Management at Applied Systems, adds,
Applied’s deep integration expertise and numerous prebuilt and custom integrations strengthen the value agencies and brokers can drive in their business with Applied Epic. Integrated and fully automated e-signature capabilities offer the promise of streamlined operations and a better customer experience.”
Interested in using RightSignature and Applied Epic together? Get in touch with a RightSignature sales representative today.

RS Blog - 92% of Sales Professionals Save More Time with RightSignature

By: Steve Stormoen / Monday, May 16, 2016

In a recent survey of RightSignature customers, 92% of respondents working in sales reported that RightSignature saves their business at least one hour every week.

Customer Evidence verified by TechValidate.

Sales is a fast-paced, competitive field in which time is of the essence. The results of our customer  survey show that sales professionals using RightSignature sign documents more quickly and speed up their sales pipeline considerably, with 23% of respondents reporting an incredible five or more hours saved every week.

How RightSignature Speeds Up Your Sales Pipeline

Successful sales professionals know that a lead is more likely to close at the moment they are most excited about a product. With a simple signing process that reduces opportunity for cold feet, RightSignature allows you to instantly send contracts and paperwork online so you can strike while the iron’s hot. With such a fast, streamlined process in place, getting documents signed becomes no problem at all. RightSignature also features add-on integrations with almost every CRM under the sun to automatically send documents, update your records, and import contact information.

The time savings of RightSignature also helps sales professionals pursue more leads by making each contract quicker to complete. Without extra hours spent tracking down unsigned documents, sales professionals can spend more time contacting potential customers and earning more revenue.

Do you have a story about a time RightSignature helped your sales team save time and sell more? Let us know on Twitter and join the conversation!

Porter Davis Homes Builds a New Paperless Workflow with RightSignature

By: Steve Stormoen / Friday, April 29, 2016

Porter Davis Homes, a prominent residential building company in Australia, was facing a big challenge. Builders of about 1600 homes per year, Porter Davis decided they needed to consolidate from five regional offices across Australia to a single location, while at the same time shifting the company’s entire workflow model to an activity-based approach, which would better promote the flexibility it felt it needed to continue to thrive. For a company that had already seen success with over ten years in operation, that’s no small task.

In a recent story in Computerworld Australia, Porter Davis Homes IT Manager Warren Arbaitman, detailed how the building company undertook this massive transformation. Discussing the need to increase mobility and reduce paper in their cross-country workflows, Arbaitman explains that Porter Davis Homes adopted RightSignature, alongside other Citrix products such as ShareFile, XenDesktop, and XenApp to help speed the transition along:
[RightSignature and ShareFile] enabled us to digitize customer-facing contracts and things like that so we could keep all of it electronic. With RightSignature we don’t need to print out thick contracts and sit down with clients and have them sign every page. We can use RightSignature to get back a legal copy that we can store electronically. Basically that just wiped out the majority of our paper overnight.”
In a high velocity, location-specific field like construction, paper represents a serious bottleneck for a company operating on such a large geographic scale as Porter Davis. Thanks to the power of RightSignature, alongside other essential Citrix offerings, Porter Davis has been able to deliver on this transition, already reporting increased collaboration and flexibility while helping promote internal standardization.

To read more about Porter Davis Homes and how they identified and addressed these challenges, check out the full article on Computerworld Australia. If you’d like to see how e-signatures can help reduce your company’s reliance on paper and increase mobility, try RightSignature for free today.

Using RightSignature with ShareFile Virtual Data Room

By: Steve Stormoen / Monday, April 11, 2016

When a high-stakes deal is on the line, the ultimate goal is a done deal, completed with a signed contract. Along the way, businesses can’t afford to take any chances when it comes to data security. When managing complicated transactions like mergers and acquisitions, real estate and legal affairs, board reporting, and corporate IPOs, a single accidental leak could cost millions of dollars, or result in serious legal liability.

Once upon a time, these deals could only be handled in person, with strict security protocols in place to keep all relevant paperwork and information confined in a single room, called a “data room.” Likewise, all contracts were signed on paper in person. Today, businesses can accomplish these deals more quickly from afar by taking advantage of powerful tools like RightSignature and Citrix ShareFile Virtual Data Room (VDR).

Like traditional data rooms, virtual data rooms provide restricted environments for businesses to discuss sensitive topics. For example, virtual data room services often allow you to secure any relevant documents with incredibly specific permissions—allowing you to restrict access based on a single file, a particular user, or time of day. Virtual data rooms also include logging features that track all access to any internal document. ShareFile VDR also works with the best-in-class ShareFile + RightSignature integration, making it easy to turn sensitive business discussions into a done deal, no matter where each party resides.

For example, imagine your business was closing on an important real estate deal to acquire a new office in a different country. If word of your negotiations went public, it might alert your competitors of your future plans before you’re ready to capitalize. Using a virtual data room service like ShareFile VDR, you could ensure that all your negotiations remain completely confidential and even close the deal without any potential leaks. Add it all up and it’s just another example of RightSignature and ShareFile, plus the virtual data room package, adding value for your business.

Ready to learn more about ShareFile VDR? Try it free!

5 Big Problems Small Business Can Simplify with HR Software Online

By: Steve Stormoen / Thursday, March 31, 2016

Human Resources can be a difficult job, but without it, your business would have no benefits, no paychecks, and no employees. What are the administrative tasks that small business owners and HR professionals alike have the most trouble with? They’re the same problems that can be easily addressed with the right HR systems and software tools.

In today's HR landscape, desktop software is on the way out, with businesses preferring more flexible cloud solutions, bringing their HR software online. As this blog has discussed before, cloud software is a popular choice for businesses concerned about costs, security, and the ability to scale to meet future growth. Here are five problems small businesses face that inspire the need for cloud HR systems.

1) I need to hire and retain great employees!

The cornerstone of any good business is good employees, but the best hires don’t grow on trees. Scouting, recruiting, and hiring is a major pain point for many small businesses—making this a popular task to simplify with HR software. Look for software that can create an easy, web-based application process as well as track your applicants. You can also use tools like Onboardia to train your new hires in an immersive environment with plenty of feedback.

2) I need to make sure everyone gets paid!

Your business won’t get far without paying all your employees on time, but a lot more goes into that process than simply signing the paychecks. Many businesses look for help from software tools for tasks like time tracking, payroll, and benefits management. This type of software is called Human Resources Management Software, or HRMS, with BambooHR a leading cloud option.

3) I need to get my employees to sign these HR documents!

HR is a profession loaded with paperwork that needs to get signed, such as offer letters, NDAs, Form I-9, direct deposit slips, and benefits enrollments—and that’s all before your employee even starts working. Traditionally, these documents are signed on your employee’s first day on the job, leading to a poor onboarding experience, and a poor first impression of your company. However, e-signature software like RightSignature has emerged as a favorite tool for HR professionals to help take care of onboarding documents extremely quickly and with fewer errors and omissions.

4) I need to find a better way for my team to work together!

HR professionals are dedicated to taking care of employees and enabling them to work at their best. With this focus in mind, collaboration software, such as messaging and filesharing apps, are becoming common in HR teams and small businesses. One popular option is ShareFile, which makes it easy for your team to store and share important HR documents securely in the cloud.

5) My company doesn’t have a dedicated HR team!

Every business has its own needs, and some are too small, or change too quickly, for it to make sense to hire a dedicated HR team. The good news is, the right mix of HR tools can ease the burden on a small business by handling any or all of the above problems. The key features to look for in any software tool for HR are integrations. HR integrations are add-ons that connect different cloud software tools to one another, allowing features and data to combine for an incredibly powerful suite of options. All of the HR software tools linked above have active, popular integrations with RightSignature, so you can get started right away.


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