The signing of a document provides you with identification, authentication, and assuring the identity of an author or signer. The existence of holographic signatures dates back thousands of years and since then they gave validity to all kinds of writings; signing of important people represented a lot of power, an aspect that still exists today.
Until relatively recently the only way to sign was through calligraphy, so it was necessary to print documents to capture the representative graphic line. Sometimes it was tedious to print and then scan to send back the document, but this practice has been being less common thanks to the emergence of eSignatures.
An eSignature is an alternative equivalent to a handwritten signature, with legal validity and full legitimacy. It can be created through biometric signatures (handwritten digital signature), electronic pencil, passwords, keys, among others. Some applications facilitate the signing procedure; however, there are two that stand out from the rest.
In this article
Part 1. Overview of DocuSign
What is DocuSign?
DocuSign is an online platform that provides services related to eSignatures. On it, you can create digital signatures to sign your documents and also send requests for other people to sign your documents.
Within DocuSign, security lies in all signature processes, thanks to the fact that all digital signatures are accompanied by an audit trail through which you can examine the validity of each signature.
This platform is used by millions of people around the world, from students and young people to professionals and people with very important positions. In addition, it can be used on any electronic device such as PC, cell phones, and tablets and it is not necessary to log into the platform, but you can perform various tasks from file storage pages such as Dropbox and Google Drive.
Is DocuSign free to Use?
If you only need to sign, DocuSign is completely free. An unlimited number of documents can be signed and an account is not required.
If what you want is to have access to more functions such as creating and organizing eSignatures, the free subscription only lasts thirty days and you need to create an account. During that period, you will be able to enjoy the features of the platform, but in the end, you will have to subscribe to a plan. There are three types of plans: personal (one user and basic functions), standard (up to five users plus notifications and make comments), and business pro (up to five users, the functions of the first two plans, sending mass mailings, and being able to add attachments and advanced fields).
The subscription may be monthly, which ranges from $15 to $60, or annual, within which the amounts may be from $120 to $480. However, it may be convenient to contract a higher denomination service because it offers the possibility of up to five users to register.
How to sign documents with DocuSign for free?
You can sign documents through DocuSign easily and practically. To perform this task, you will only have to do the following:
1. Click the link of the request in your email
The author must send you the documents that requires to be signed. Check the request in your email and click "Review document”, this link will take you directly to the document, unless you need to authenticate access.
2. Authenticate access
Some writers may request to authenticate their documents. This can be by typing in an access code, by SMS, or by knowledge-based identity questions. In most cases, your email will be all you will need, but this will depend on what the author of the file has decided.
Give consent to the disclosure of eSignatures and electronic records
You will likely be asked to review and consent to the release of your eSignature and electronic documents. Click the white box next to "I agree to use electronic records and signatures" and then click "Continue", after this step you will be able to see the document that you need to sign.
4. Review the document
Scroll through the document to review it or click "Start" to see the fields assigned to you to fill in the required information by typing, select an option from a drop-down list, or by clicking on a blank box.
5. Sign the document
Click "Sign" to sign. If you do not have a DocuSign account you will need to confirm your name or initials. Select "Change Style" to choose the style of your eSignature and choose the one that you like the most; finally, click on "Adopt and Sign."
6. Check other actions (optional)
There are alternative actions you can take before finalizing the signing process. Some of the most common and used are the following:
Finish later: This allows you to save what you have done to postpone the signing process and continue it later.
Decline to Sign: This gives you the opening of not signing the document and writing a reason so that the sender knows it.
Assign to Someone Else: Its function is to allow writing the mail of a new recipient with a request to review the document and the signing process to continue. He will receive a notification with a request to sign the documents.
Print & Sign: this option allows the printing of the document to sign it manually. You will have to choose to send the signed document when uploading or by fax.
7. Finish the process
Once you have signed the document and have filled in all the requested fields, click on “Finish” to complete the signing process. The signers will immediately receive a copy in their email of the completed documents to check that the process was finished.
Part 2. Alternative to DocuSign-PDFelement
Many of the documents that are presented for signing are PDF files since they can be protected to avoid their modification and manipulation. If what you want is to translate your eSignature into PDF files, Wondershare PDFelement - PDF Editor is software that will be more than enough and that will provide you with many advantages.
Advantages of PDFelement
Simple operation: PDFElement contains a very practical interface that will allow you to carry out any job in a simple way, including creating and capturing your digital signature in any document.
Not just for business: this software can be used for any business, but also for personal or informal use. It meets the requirements for any type of user and exceeds the expectations of the most demanding people.
High efficiency and time-saving: Are you in a hurry or do you need an urgent job? PDFElement has no problem with it. The tasks you have to do will be completed efficiently and in a short time thanks to the extraordinary development of this software. Placing your eSignature will be quick and smooth.
Completely legal: The use of digital signatures is legal and more and more countries are recognizing it. Keep sure that this process will be legal and endorsed by the authorities, so your eSignature used in PDFElement will be valid.
Protect your security: Your security and data protection are one of the most important aspects of document handling and PDFElement contains several elements that help keep your files safe.
Create and add eSignature to a PDF Document with PDFElement
PDFelement has the function that you can create your eSignature. You can do it using the writing board tool and get a drawing as an output. You can also create your electronic signature through a photograph of your handwritten signature or your name, the only requirement is that the image format is PNG or JPG. With the "Create Stamp" feature your eSignature will be created, so you only have to select the image that contains your signature for the process to be completed.
Once you have created your eSignature, you just have to choose it in the "Stamps" section and place it in the indicated place. In addition to this, you can add security elements to your documents such as putting the name of the person who signed it, a password, location information, and the possibility of blocking the document after having signed it.
Currently, it is quite common to sign PDF documents using an eSignature, which can have a validity equal to that of a conventional signature. The advantages it offers are many and it is highly recommended to have software that facilitates this process, which can be repeated many times and this requires that the task be practical and in which you invest little time. While there is DocuSign, a global platform with many important features, PDFElement is a fabulous alternative that will meet your demands and will make this task simple and easy to do.