Signing contracts electronically

Working in HR is very satisfying. For instance, making happy those who wanted a job in your company so badly. Then comes the most annoying part, which is handling all the paperwork, starting with the employment contract. Luckily, the electronic signature simplifies and secures both your work and your new colleague’s work. Do you want to know why it has become so important in your work life and the advantages it offers? Don’t take your eyes off the screen.

eSigning contracts, fully legal

Here we would like to be crystal clear. We are still too used to going to the company’s headquarters to sign the contract on paper. So, if they suggest you sign electronically, do not be afraid.

To clear up any doubts, let’s turn to Article 23 of Law on Information Society Services:

  1. Contracts conducted by electronic means shall be considered to have all the effects laid down by the legal system when the consent and other requirements necessary for their validity are met.
  2. The prior agreement of the parties on the use of electronic means is not necessary for contracts to be validly concluded by electronic means.
  3. Whenever the Law requires that the contract or any information related to it must be in writing, this requirement shall be understood to be satisfied if the contract or the information is held in electronic form.

Also, Article 25 of eIDAS Regulation (EU) 910/2014 stipulates that:

An electronic signature shall not be denied legal effect and admissibility as evidence in legal proceedings solely on the grounds that it is in an electronic form or that it does not meet the requirements for qualified electronic signatures.

For all these reasons, you can sign your contract electronically safely. This does not involve any risk for you, as long as you have adequate knowledge of the digital procedure.

Why should we eSign contracts?

eSigning work contracts is trendy. It is not just something for the public to see “how innovative we are”. 

Without a doubt, this recruitment process conveys a modern image to society. This could have a positive impact on turnover. But eSignatures go beyond that.

Offering the possibility to digitally sign a contract accelerates the recruitment of talented people. Do you want to make a great signing for your team and you don’t want to delay it any longer to make him/her choose your company? Make the signing process of the contract easier for them.

If you stop to think, the amount of paperwork involved in new contracts is huge. It is not only the contract itself, but also other documents that are linked to it and to the onboarding process (e.g., confidential agreements, dealings with Public Administrations, etc.).

The accumulation of documents usually involve storage costs, risk of loss, slower document management, etc. Digital signatures remove this at one go, handling electronic documents in the cloud.

Also, we commit to reducing the company’s carbon footprint. Environmental care is a must, not a trend! 

The work of the HR team recurring tasks. For example, the renewal of contracts. Automating them with electronic signature solutions will indeed benefit this department.

Digitally signing contracts will protect any sensitive dataprevent falsification of documents, will hold up in a court of law (as explained in article 25 of eIDAS) and helps meeting compliance requirements.

Viafirma solutions carry out an audit (Audit Trail) from the beginning to the end of the whole signing process. In fact, they create a full legal report once the signing process is completed, which may be very useful in case of legal conflict.

In addition, they prevent errors throughout the process. Smart forms and compulsory reading clauses ensure that nothing is overlooked in the process.

Last but not least, wouldn’t you like your HR team to carry out truly useful tasks? Clearly, routine paperwork is not one of them. Electronic signatures free them from a lot of tedious paperwork. This way they can make better use of their time and exploit their full potential for the well-being of the team.

How to electronically sign a contract

How to achieve all these advantages? There are several ways of using digital signatures on employment contracts. Its versatility allows to fit into different case scenarios. Lets see the most common ones.

One of the most useful scenarios nowadays is eSigning remotely. The current state of affairs has boosted teleworking. This includes a worker’s first step in their new company, the signing of their work contract.

It is very likely that the new member of your team will not be in the office for some time. This saving in travel time increases comfort and health for them and their new colleagues.

Here’s an example of remote signing:

  1. The employer will prepare all the documentation to be signed and will set up a signing policy containing the required evidence (digital certificates, biometric evidence, OTP codes, advanced checks, etc.)
  2. It will then be sent to the worker.
  3. Once the employee receives it, he/she will be notified via SMS or email and the employer will be informed via an acknowledgement of receipt.
  4. The signatory may be able to sign remotely by adding the required evidence from the signing policy. 

On other occasions, the signing of the contract will take place in a face-to-face environment. Here the preparation of the documentation is similar to the remote signature. The difference is that it will be the employer who shows the documentation using an electronic device. The signer will sign the contract on the same device or via signature pad that is able to collect biometric data.

If your company is hiring, the number of contracts to be signed will increase. The best thing would be to have the option of signing them in one go. Fortunately, this option is available and it is called bulk signing.

VIAFIRMA - Signing contracts electronically

In addition, so that no contract remains unsigned, you can have your digital signature holder at hand, a user-friendly interface that displays them all. 

Earlier we talked about how important it is to automate daily the signing process. This can be done via server-based signatures, without required user interaction. This is achieved using digital certificates stored on secure servers.

Another way of optimising time in HR is by not writing and preparing the same contract over again for its electronic signature. To this end, some digital signature solutions offer you the option of creating customized templates. This way, you will only need to select the template and send it to your new employee.

The electronic signature has plenty of arguments to make its way into the HR department. There are many processes, apart from recruitment, where digital signatures are essential tools.

Not all tasks are as enjoyable as incorporating a new worker. There are other tasks that are equally necessary, i.e., dismissals, sanctions, regulatory files, communications, etc.

Throughout this article you have been able to see for yourself a little peace of the full range of possibilities it offers and its potential for business growth and worker comfort. What are you waiting for?