Digital Signature Vs. Electronic Signature: Which One to Choose?
Digital Signature Vs. Electronic Signature: Which One to Choose?
January 24, 2024 | 8 min read
general

Signing documents has always been a part of every business. Things have been different during the times when businesses followed the traditional method of signing the documents – the inked signatures or wet signatures.

Before understanding the digital signature or the electronic signatures, let us understand what were the difficulties faced while using the traditional method of signing the documents.

The traditional method of signing documents with pen and ink always carried the risk of human error, document handling was difficult and moreover, the document signing consumed a lot of man-hours.

With the transformation in technology, digital signatures came into existence and businesses started using digital signatures for getting their documents signed.

And then with time, E-signatures or electronic signatures became a part of document signing.

List of Content:

  • Digital Signature and Electronic Signature
  • Benefits of Digital Signature and Electronic Signature
  • Difference between Digital Signature and Electronic Signature

Understanding the Definition of Digital Signature and Electronic Signature:

Digital Signature:

Digital Signature relies on the Public Key Infrastructure which carries human identity for document preparation and document signing. And it assigns the hash key for the users involved in the document signing process.

It secures the documents with standard encryption and nothing on the document can be changed or edited and plays a role similar to e-fingerprint for getting the document signed. It requires defined technical implementation for industries that are highly regulated. These are also required where legal documents come into play. The Digital Signature also carries digital certification authentication.

Electronic Signature

Electronic Signature is one of the easiest and quickest ways of getting the documents signed. In simple words, it is as easy as getting signatures on a PDF or document.

Electronic Signature also uses images, stylish fonts, or pre-defined signature styles for signing the document. It is generally used for the HR industry, contracts, and other non-profit organisations.

Benefits of Both Digital Signature and Electronic Signatures

Now let us understand the benefits of both Digital Signature and Electronic Signatures and what changes have they brought to the conventional or traditional method of document signing:

Digital Signature Benefits:

  • Managing the most difficult part of document signing helps businesses streamline everyday workflow.
  • It saves businesses a lot of time by managing the document signing process.
  • Digital Signature reduces man-made errors in documents.
  • By saving time, it helps your team save time for indulging in business growth activities and hence increases productivity.
  • With the Secured signing process, digital signature increases customer satisfaction.

Apart from all the above benefits, Digital Signature helps to make the organisation more sustainable by reducing the cost of paper, the cost spent on resources for document management, and saves the travelling cost incurred in making the documents reach safely to the concerned people for signing the documents.

E-signatures implied on the digital form of the document have nearly similar benefits but contribute heavily.

Benefits of using Electronic Signature for signing the documents:

  • Electronic Signature is the easiest and quickest way to get a document signed.
  • With the features provided with electronic signatures, one can track the document activities in real-time.
  • With electronic signature, you can automate the document delivery.
  • Electronic Signature helps you customise and manage the signing task for a document.
  • One of the benefits of using Electronic Signature for getting the document signed is that businesses can customise their organisation’s branding on the document.
  • With a faster turnaround time, Electronic Signatures have been effective in increasing productivity and easing the business workflow.
  • Electronic signatures use a secure document signing process.

Since both digital signature and electronic signature help solve document signing problems, how will you choose which one suits you better?

Differences between Digital Signature and Electronic Signature that will help you decide:

  • Authentication Requirement: The digital signature needs certification appended whereas the electronic signature works with an email ID or a pin.
  • Security of the Document: While the digital signature is highly encrypted and secured, the electronic signature provides competitive security for the document.
  • Regulation Required: Digital Signature needs compliance whereas the electronic signature is suitable for everyday tasks.
  • Complexity of Use: Digital Signature captures signer authority and is complex in use whereas electronic signature is simple and easy to use.
  • Use Cases: Digital Signatures are generally used for legal documents, confidential contracts, government documents and more. Unlike digital signatures, the electronic signature could be used for Real Estate, HR industry, approvals, sales, and internal contracts.
  • Verification: Digital Signature uses defined software and tools for verification; whereas, electronic signatures are straightforward forward and permissions are pre-defined.
  • Cost: Managing the document signing process with digital signatures is costlier than managing it with electronic signatures.
  • Acceptance of the Document: Digital Signature is accepted in many countries whereas electronic signature has acceptance according to choice.
  • Turnaround Time: Since electronic signatures are easier to use the turnaround time is less than that of Digital Signature.

Conclusion:

By now you must have learned a lot about digital signatures and electronic signatures. With the list of benefits that both carry, it is easy for businesses to understand that switching to Digital Signature or electronic signature, of them is going to be beneficial for their businesses. It is going to reduce the overall stress that document handling and document management carries.

Also, in terms of getting the overall number of documents signed, it is advisable for the businesses to choose one of them going forward. Both digital signatures and electronic signatures have defined processes and use the technology to keep their document safe and secure.

With platforms like KONSIGN, you can not only easily adapt Electronic Signature in your business but also integrate document management by integrating the document management system with the platform. It also allows you to extend, reschedule, or review the document before sending it for signature.

You can also remain stress-free by tracking the document signing activity of any document sent for signature.

Switch to Signing your documents either digitally or electronically and save yourselves both time and manpower consumption.

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