APIs make the digital world go ‘round. You probably use them every day without even realising it.
Watch Netflix — that’s an API.
Order an Uber — that’s an API.
Send an email — that’s an API too.
APIs are the connective tissue in today’s digital ecosystem. So what exactly are the benefits of an API? And how can you start leveraging APIs in your business? An easy win is with eSignatures.
At their simplest, eSignature APIs digitally capture legally binding signatures for important documents like sales contracts, employment contracts, tax information, and real estate forms, without having to build a digital signature functionality yourself.
But dig a little deeper and you’ll find they unlock a whole bunch of business-boosting benefits like a better customer experience and new-found efficiencies for your teams.
Read on to find out how eSignature APIs increase productivity in business.
Attract and retain customers
So much of attracting new customers and retaining existing ones is about putting them and their needs at the center of everything you do. And focusing on building positive customer experiences with your brand pays off. In fact, Deloitte and Touche found that customer-centric companies were 60% more profitable than those that weren’t.
APIs are a fast, easy way to boost your customer experience. Take an eSignature API for example. By embedding eSignatures into your website or app, customers avoid exhausting, time-draining workflows just to sign documents like contracts and agreements. Instead, they stay on your website or app the entire time rather than being bounced around the internet.
What’s more, when white-labeling your eSignature offering — like with Dropbox Sign’s APIs — your customers stay on your website and only ever see your brand.
Improving your customer experience doesn’t require a complete overhaul of your brand or user interface. A simple tweak to a process like document signing is all you need. Simply embedding an eSignature API within your website or application makes for a smoother, less confusing experience for customers, and that will make a difference to your bottom line.
Eliminate repetitive manual tasks
No one loves admin. For U.S teams, it takes up as much as 29% of their day. But not only is it a drain on your employees, it’s a cost to your business, because with the time it takes to tick off admin tasks, your employees could be doing much more impactful activities, like prospecting or finding new candidates.
So how do businesses increase productivity? Instead of spending hours individually filling out and emailing documents to get signed, you can automate much of the process using an eSignature API, which frees your employees up for more impactful tasks.
Features like Dropbox Sign’s API Template functionality let you create a document template once, then reuse that document again and again.
For example, HR teams can create templates for frequently used documents — like W-9 and NDAs — then send them out quickly and en masse with the click of a button.
When you relieve your staff of these kinds of frustrations and make your business more productive in one swoop, it improves your business’ output big-time.
Onboard employees with greater success
Any way you can make the onboarding process easier for both new employees and your HR team is worthwhile.
Some of the most time-intensive tasks involve filling out documents — NDAs, W-9s, W-2s, signed employment agreements, independent contractor agreements, employee verification forms, background check authorizations, the list goes on and on.
While, for the most part, these forms are a necessary evil you can’t do away with entirely, you can make the signing process much more palatable for both new employees and your HR team. And the benefits are well worth it given that great onboarding can improve employee retention by 82%.
Placing eSignatures at the heart of your hiring and onboarding processes lets HR teams and candidates share documents effortlessly with the appropriate stakeholders. This streamlines document formatting for HR teams, removing the risk of human error and repetitive data entry, and keeps candidates on track with automatic email reminders.
Even better, tools like Dropbox Sign make international onboarding easier by helping both senders and signers work in 22 different languages.
Making the little things easier throughout the onboarding process leads to happier employees that stick around.
Cut development costs
Traditionally, you’d task your engineering team with building an eSignature application into your website or application. That engineering team would then spend effort maintaining its functionality, security, and compliance — a heavy burden on top of all their other, actual business, applications.
eSignatures APIs take all that development load off your engineering team. Instead of building from scratch, your development team can simply integrate a ready-made eSignature application directly into your app or website, via an API.
Even better, because a third-party has built it, the responsibility for its maintenance, functionality, compliance, and security lies with them — leaving you to focus on what’s important to your business.
Think of it this way: your engineering team could build you a completely custom eSignature tool. But is it the best use of their time and your money? Especially when you could integrate an expert-built eSignature tool in just a few hours.
But wait, APIs do so much more
By integrating an eSignature API rather than building from scratch, you add new capabilities to your business in days rather than months. And that moves you one step closer to better relationships with your customers and improved output from your teams.
eSignatures are a quick win to jumpstart your API integration journey and make a meaningful difference to your customers and business operations. But these improvements are just the tip of the iceberg for eSignature APIs.
Read A non-technical guide to Dropbox Sign’s eSignature API for a full picture of how eSignature APIs are boosting business growth and operations today.