A piece of paper is inexpensive, but consider how many pieces of paper the average company uses files, and stores each year. The number can run into the millions, if not more, and when you figure out what you’re doing with that piece of paper, you quickly realize that switching to E-signature online app and getting rid of paper-based permits could make significant savings.
How the E-signature online app saves costs
Some organizations are already aware of the environmental impact of paper use and are working to reduce consumption. But all too often when it comes to document sharing, page after page is printed to collect ink signatures. Still, having a hard time keeping track of the costs? Let’s look at a typical process. We estimate the average company produces around 10,000 documents per year. Each around ten pages long, with three copies required for signers:
This is not prohibitive, we calculate that each sheet costs half a cent on average.
Printing and photocopying
The cost of each page, which is around 2p per page, includes equipment setup, toner, and maintenance.
If everyone who signs the document is in the same building, the cost of delivery is zero, but most documents must be mailed. Assuming that 30% of the 10,000 documents are delivered by mail, the average cost of postage and envelope is 46 pence.
If the document is in urgent need of delivery, it can be delivered by courier and when this is done for 10% of the documents at an average cost of £ 10 the numbers start to add up.
Some companies still use fax machines. So let’s say 40% of documents are sent this way, at 3 pence per sheet.
So far our calculations look like this:
Paper = £ 1,500
Printing / Photocopying = £ 6,000
Internal delivery = € 0.
Postage = £ 4,500
Courier = £ 30,000
Fax = £ 3,600
Sub Total = £ 45,600 But that’s not all we need to consider …
Many companies want to archive their documents digitally, which means scanning, storage, and paper disposal. In our next blog on the same topic, we’ll look at the costs involved, and then compare that to what the average digital signature company spends.
After the documents are printed and distributed for signature. They are returned and we now need to evaluate the next part of the process. Again, our sample company produces 10,000 documents per year. And each is around ten pages long, with three copies required for signers:
Scanning Most companies want to link their signed documents to a digital record, which means that every page has to be scanned. This means that every page has to be scanned. Together with the cost of equipment, maintenance, and other administrative costs, the cost is 3p per page.
There is also a human element in preparing the documents for scanning, which can take around 10 minutes. So we have to factor in a cost of £ 1.33 per document. Paper Storage and Disposal If companies choose not to have a digital archive. They will want to make sure that all signed paper copies, not just the scans, are kept safe. Especially if the law requires them to be kept for between seven and ten years.
Paper-based signature total cost in Pounds
There is an administrative burden that we charge at around 0.66p per document, and we also take into account that a third of these documents must be safely disposed of at 0.2p per document.
Paper, Printing & Shipping = £ 45,600
Scanning = £ 49,000
Storage & Disposal = £ 20,600
TOTAL = £ 115,200
As a reminder, this shows the total cost of paper-based signatures on 10,000 documents of 10 pages with three different signers – £ 115,000 – which is £ 2.60 per sheet! Now let’s look at the cost to create a customized contract online. These calculations are based on DocSignPro, which allows users to create an unlimited number of digital signatures online as one of the best e signature apps.
The service is metered by the number of users signing and at the company level, which is what we have assumed for the paper-based signature samples, the cost per user is £ 12 per month or around £ 144 annually. Even assuming 100 users to sign documents, the bill would only be £ 14,400 a year – a fraction of the cost of paper-based signatures. With E-signature online app there are no paper, printing, or delivery costs, and no huge filing cabinets are required to store documents.
We also offer volume discounts and signature packages. Even if the number of end-users or signers is much larger, the costs will always be lower than traditional methods – in fact, the more users, the greater the savings.