The inevitable switch
Digital signatures have transformed from being nice-to-haves a few years ago to must-haves today. They empower businesses to sign their contracts effortlessly from anywhere at any time. Now that digital and e-signatures are legally recognized and enforceable globally for most scenarios, companies of all sizes are making the switch. The pandemic has only accelerated this trend. In addition to reducing contract execution costs and turnaround times, digital signatures also enable enhanced security with their ability to ensure data integrity.
Digital signing within Zoho Contracts
At Zoho Contracts, our vision is to facilitate a seamless contract management experience throughout the entire contract lifecycle. To this end, we’ve tightly integrated our esignature software, Zoho Sign, with Zoho Contracts. This integration eliminates the need for contract owners to switch tools at the execution stage. Zoho Sign complies with most e-sign laws, such as the ESIGN Act in the United States and EIDAS in the European Union. See the full list of e-sign laws Zoho Sign complies with here . When you subscribe to a Zoho Contracts plan, you gain access to all the features in the comparable plan of Zoho Sign.
A simple and secure approach to contract execution
Zoho Contracts boasts a finely crafted contract execution functionality that packs robust features contract managers didn't even know they needed into an easy-to-use interface.
- Seamless contract execution
- Better control over execution
- Effortless online contract signing
Seamless contract execution
Once the involved parties agree to all the terms in a contract, the contract owner can execute it by getting the representatives to sign. In addition to adding signers from their own organization and the counterparty organization, contract owners can also add other representatives such as witnesses.
Edit ending text
At the time of contract execution, contract owners may need to edit the ending text of documents to include required signature placeholders. In Zoho Contracts, contract owners can edit just the ending text to include the placeholders at the execution stage without having to move the contract document to the draft stage. Contract owners can add new table cells and insert signatory blocks based on the number of signers while editing the document's ending text.
Configure execution workflow
By providing the Set Signing Order option, Zoho Contracts allows a contract owner to enter the ordinal number in the box next to each signer and configure an execution workflow based on their preference. When the contract owner sends the contract for signature, the signers will receive an email to sign according to the signing order set.
Send for signature
When a contract owner sends a contract for signature, Zoho Contracts redirects them to the Zoho Sign UI with the contract document loaded. Here, contract owners can easily drag and drop the signature and other placeholder fields wherever they want them in the document. After adding the placeholder fields, the contract owner can send the contract document for signature with just a click, and the signers will receive an email notification with a link to sign, based on the signing order.
Better control over execution
View signature activity
After sending a contract for signature, an Activity section gets enabled in the Signature tab that allows contract owners to view all signature activities contextually. The Activity section helps contract owners closely monitor the signature status with the help of specific icons for different actions. When a contract is in the Sign Pending status, the contract owner can either send reminders to the signers or recall the signature request. The involved signers will receive an email that notifies them about the recall.
Track signature status
Each status icon in the Activity section denotes a specific signature activity status, and, on hovering, the tool-tip displays the timestamp of when the action was done.
View previous signature cycles
If a signer declines to sign a contract during contract execution, the contract owner can make the necessary changes and re-send the contract for signature. In that process, if a contract undergoes multiple signature cycles, the contract owner can view previous cycles to keep track of previous document versions and strategize the future steps. Also, this feature allows viewing signature activity in the original document, amendment letters, and renewal/extension letters during post-contract execution management. By enabling granular activity tracking, Zoho Contracts promotes improved visibility of contract execution and provides better control over contracts.
Effortless online contract signing
When a contract owner sends a contract for signature, signers associated with that contract will receive a signature request email. Accessing the link enclosed in the email, signers can:
- Review, accept, and sign the contract
- Decline the signature request
- Delegate the signature request
- Review and skip signing until a later time
Further, on all signers signing a contract, the contract becomes active either on execution or on the specified date based on the contract effective date mentioned by the contract owner. Also, the signers receive an email with a signed copy of the contract.
When a signer signs or declines a contract document, Zoho Contracts notifies the contract owner with in-app and email notifications. The involved signers will receive email notifications on the actions performed by fellow signers associated with that contract document. The contract status will also get updated accordingly.
To send a contract for signature, the contract owner must have a user account in Zoho Sign. However, the signers do not need Zoho accounts to sign contracts. Signers who are guests or non-Zoho users can directly access the contract document from the secure link in the email and proceed with contract signing. Signers who are existing Zoho Sign users can sign the contract either from the Zoho Sign dashboard or by accessing the link in the email.