Over the last six months there has been an explosion in demand for e-Contracting solutions as organizations seek to replace unpopular paper agreements with superior electronic versions.
What’s the reason for the surge? Well in the EU, this is due at least in part to the arrival of the eIDAS regulation, which became effective in July 1st 2016.
eIDAS creates a common framework for what a digital contract and a digital signature constitutes. It also defines that if a platform is validated and approved in one member state it has to be recognized in all member states.
According to Jesper Frederiksen, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at DocuSign, who spoke at White Clarke Group’s Auto Captives Summit in November 2016, the result of the regulation has been that “some of the biggest markets in Europe such as Germany, Italy, Spain, and the Swiss are approving similar processes now.”
This makes life far easier for finance providers and the companies who serve them. DocuSign are able to build a single solution available across all jurisdictions, and the finance companies who integrate with it don't need to worry about legality and identity proofing in every single country, because DocuSign in most cases will have done the work for them.
DocuSign’s model is based on the insights they gained from Visa, which invested in them in 2014.
They view the challenges of building a global e-Contracting service as being similar to those which Visa has already conquered. Like Visa, which spends millions on its brand, for example the exclusive payment card and payment system for the Olympic Games, DocuSign has started to promote its own brand identity so that customers will recognize and be reassured when they see that the DocuSign platform is handling their e-Contract.
“So, what we're trying to do is we are consciously building a brand that means that when you present a DocuSign transaction in front of your consumers, they will actually recognize it because they may have already seen it from Barclays or from Virgin Media or from Vodafone or from whoever else they digitally sign with and they trust it.”
DocuSign are also adding a raft of additional smart functionality which turns the contract from a passive ledger of record to something which is more active and ‘smart’, linking customer events like payments or non-payments to the contract. When a customer event occurs, the contract knows what to do next and automatically triggers it.
DocuSign have partnered with companies such as White Clarke Group to help transform their customers businesses by going fully digital. By leveraging White Clarke Group’s platform with DocuSign’s e-Signature and e-Identification solutions, auto finance companies can realize revenue faster, automate back-end document processing, reduce operating costs and increase customer satisfaction.
It is these sorts of developments, combined with the emerging regulatory regime which is driving the boom in e-Contracting services.