Using e-signatures for an employee agreement and onboarding.

A woman reviews employee onboarding documentation for with esignatures on a tablet.

Make employee onboarding smoother with e-signatures. Discover what e-signatures are and how they can help your hiring process.

There’s something special about a new hire signing an employee agreement in the manager’s office. However, now that more and more people are working remotely, signing job contracts in person just isn’t possible. That’s where electronic signatures — or e-signatures — can help you.

Let’s explore how e-signatures can make hiring, signing employee agreements, and employee onboarding faster and easier.

What is an e-signature?

An e-signature is exactly what it says on the label — a digital process that is the equivalent of a handwritten signature. E-signatures are recognized and legally binding in most industrialized countries. They are usually processed with a dedicated digital signature software.

Legality of e-signature for employee agreements.

The great news is that not only do e-signatures make hiring processes more streamlined, but they are also legally binding. They’re valid in all 50 states in the U.S. and are given the same protections as handwritten document signing. This applies to anything from employee hiring contracts to onboarding documents such as healthcare plan acceptance.

One way to avoid any discrepancies with an e-signature is to use software tools that ensure there can be no tampering with the document. This can include authentication and security settings that ensure files are signed by whoever they say signed them.

How signing employee agreements electronically helps onboarding.

Aside from going paperless at work where you can, the main benefits of e-signatures are speed and convenience. You can share the employee agreement with the new hire through email or file-sharing solutions in the blink of an eye, and it can be signed just as quickly on a computer or even a mobile device. They also save money — there’s no need to spend paper and ink to print out the contract.

Another attractive feature of e-signatures is document tracking. You can get instant notifications when the agreement is opened and signed. The digital process also makes archiving contracts easier since you won’t have to scan documents for digital safekeeping.

How secure is e-signature for employee agreements and onboarding?

The final way that electronic signatures help employee onboarding and employee agreements is by making them more secure. You can use advanced security protocols and require identity authentication to ensure that the documents are signed appropriately.

When produced with the right tools, e-signatures can include encryption, digital certificates, and other forms of authentication to ensure the identity of the signer and to protect the document’s integrity as it is passed back and forth for review and processing.

When using e-signatures for employee agreements, this can be especially important since the documents are being used to confirm the terms of tenure as well as training and benefits available to the new hire. Human resources officials can rest assured that their agreements are protected, secure, and legal when using e-signatures generated with the right platform security.

Using e-signatures for an employee agreement reduces waste.

Another critical benefit of e-signatures as part of the hiring process is the elimination of hard-copy documents that waste paper and other internal resources.

Without requiring HR personnel or new hires to print out documents for signature, time, money, and supplies are saved for everyone involved. The result is a reduced carbon footprint from using sustainable alternatives to printed documents.

But there’s no need to worry about a lack of documentation. Signed files have an audit trail attached to them, and new hires are able to download an electronic copy of any agreements or resources provided to their local computer. Keeping things electronic also has the added benefit of making files easier to locate and organize while saving physical space and reducing clutter in the office.

How to get started with e-signatures.

It’s easy to start using e-signatures with a comprehensive electronic signature software, such as Adobe Acrobat. You can conveniently request signatures, track and manage the process, set security requirements, and more.

Discover how Adobe Acrobat can help keep your business moving forward.