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The first Thursday of May is World Password Day. Since 2013, the day promotes better password habits, as secure passwords are a critical piece of today’s cybersecurity.

 

While many people observe World Password Day by changing their passwords; moving to longer, complex passwords; turning on two-factor authentication; and other steps to improve individual password security, ZorroSign is working to remove the risk of passwords all together!

 

  • According to last year’s Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report, over 80% of hacking breaches involve brute-forced credentials or the use of lost or stolen credentials.
  • In an article from last year’s World Password Day, CPO Magazine proposed that the best password is no password at all, as “passwords alone are not enough to protect products and users would be foolish to think otherwise.”
  • A recent Information Age article claims the time is right for passwordless authentication, as “passwordless authentication makes users’ lives easier” and removes the human factor from cybersecurity—where “people just can’t be trusted to set reliable passwords, to change them frequently, to make sure they are strong, and to keep them secure.”
  • Philip Black at Techradar.com published an April 2021 article dispelling the myths around passwordless authentication. Black suggests “a paradigm shift is on the horizon as new passwordless solutions and technologies gain in popularity, such as biometrics, laying the foundation for a more secure standard for accessing information in the digital world.” And he removes the mythical obstacles around multifactor authentication, the risks of biometrics, and how expensive it is to escape passwords for cybersecurity.

 

Looking to overcome these risks, we partnered with Trusona, the pioneering leader in passwordless identity solutions. Our shared goal is to authenticate user identities in digital environments without needing passwords.

 

ZorroSign’s identity-as-a-service (IDaaS) solution now includes identity proofing capabilities—uniquely combining Trusona’s authentication architecture with ZorroSign’s digital signature and a document management system.

 

Trusona’s solution uses passwordless identity proofing that is available in 38 states and provides the ability to scan a government-issued REAL ID Act identification—like a driver’s license—and then verify the identity with the state’s department of motor vehicle. ZorroSign’s integration with Trusona will elevate the user authentication capabilities of digital signatures, digital document workflows, contract lifecycle management (CLM), and potentially eVoting.

 

“Blockchain is here; remote identity proofing is here,” says Ori Eisen, founder and CEO of Trusona. “Trusona helps us protect our high-valued documents like sensitive financial assets and voting records, providing us with the confidence to execute documents securely and from any location.” Over 200 organizations, including some of the world’s largest financial services and health care companies, rely on Trusona’s identity proofing solutions.

 

Plus, with our mobile app, ZorroSign leverages the biometric security of Apple and Android devices to secure privacy and data with biometrics such as fingerprints and iris scans—facilitating passwordless user authentication at the device-level for digital signatures and document management.

 

To learn more about passwordless user authentication, and how ZorroSign provides superior privacy and data security with our blockchain technology, contact us today.

April 22 is Earth Day—an annual event to demonstrate support for environmental protection. At ZorroSign, however, we aspire to protect the environment and conserve natural resources every day.

 

How?

 

Environmental conservation is part of our corporate social responsibility and intrinsic to our mission, our values, and even our technology.

 

  • Our Mission
    At ZorroSign, we help individuals, businesses, organizations, and even government entities to achieve a paperless life. We all understand that switching from doing business using paper to digital records is not only a smart business decision, but it is also good for the environment. Each time you use ZorroSign to digitally transact agreements, contracts, and other documents—instead of printing, faxing, scanning, shipping documents overnight to collect signatures—you save trees and water, plus reduce carbon emissions.

And with ZorroSign’s SAVE A TREE – PLANT A TREE initiative, for every 8000 pages you save using our digital platform, we will plant a tree on your behalf!

 

  • Our Values
    ZorroSign is committed to democratizing user privacy and data security by bringing digital signatures and a paperless life to everyone around the world. Not only can you save operating costs by moving away from paper, printing, copying, conveying, and storing hard copy documents, but you also decrease your environmental consumption by digitizing your communications and operations.

Achieving a paperless life helps you and your organization to have a positive impact on the environment through sustainable practices. Visit our environmental savings calculator to quickly see how you can save trees, wood, water, CO2 emissions, and time by “going digital” with ZorroSign.

 

  • Our Technology
    It has been a long-running criticism of cryptocurrencies that the data mining required to produce coins consumes an astonishing amount of electricity. With the public blockchains used for cryptocurrencies, mining coins requires complicated mathematical processing on high-end graphic processing units (GPUs), consuming energy both for calculation processing and cooling those GPUs down under heavy load.

 

However, ZorroSign was not built on a public blockchain architecture.

 

Instead, we are built on private, permissioned Hyperledger Fabric. Unlike Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency models for blockchain, Hyperledger Fabric is a next-generation enterprise blockchain architecture “with even lower electricity costs and attendant carbon footprints,” writes Michael Barnard in a CleanTechnica report.

 

Hyperledger Fabric’s architecture is so completely different than the mining and broadly distributed model of bitcoin that the enterprise blockchain can operate faster with far, far lower energy consumption.

 

This combination of speed and energy-efficiency made Hyperledger Fabric the ideal technology for ZorroSign’s digital platform.

 

“We are proud to use Hyperledger Fabric as our blockchain architecture,” says ZorroSign CEO and co-founder, Shamsh Hadi. “Not only does this private, permissioned approach bring greater privacy and security to our users, but the environmental costs of operating a private enterprise blockchain—like Hyperledger Fabric—is magnitudes lower than the high energy consumption required of public blockchains like Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.”

 

To learn more about ZorroSign’s commitment to environmental conservation, our corporate social responsibilities, and how we deliver greater privacy and security for digital signatures and documents, contact us.

Blockchain technology to protect digital transactions.

 

The Value of Paperless Operations

Credit unions are always exploring ways to improve their communities and better serve their members. One strategy that can do both is moving away from paper documents and storage towards digital records and paperless operations.

 

For credit unions themselves, paperless operations save time and costs (alleviating the need to fill out and store paper documents) plus “going green” lightens the environment toll of business. But for members, the benefits are even more dramatic:

  • Gaining greater speed and convenience in financial transactions,
  • Improving security against fraud and transaction errors,
  • Leveraging more efficient audit trails for records and reporting, and
  • Eliminating the risk of sensitive financial details found on paper in offices, drawers, even the garbage.

“If every American household viewed and paid bills online, it could reduce solid waste by more than 800,000 tons a year and save about 18.5 million trees,” notes Aspire Federal Credit Union.

 

Digital transactions provide higher accuracy with fewer errors, improved controls, and greater member satisfaction resulting from simplified process. In addition to cost-savings, perhaps the biggest benefit of credit unions going digital is the increase of productivity and the ability to track the progress of digital signature transactions at every step and in real time.

 

There are three simple and easy steps to transacting documents digitally:

  1. Document Preparation: Creating and preparing the digital documents that will control the transaction, for example: Something as simple as filling out a form by hand or in digital format, or something as complex as something that needs a formal document collaboration or document preparation service such as the one offered by legal staff.
  2. Document Execution: Here documents, contracts, attachments, supporting documents, etc. are signed by one or more authorized parties in a particular sequence (workflow), submitting critical information. Security provisions are enforced and meta data is associated with signatory to ensure the authenticity and validity of each step of the digital documents’ transaction.
  3. Post-Execution Processes: The post-execution process includes securely storing the document, protecting it against tampering, alteration, and theft. In case of a dispute, the record must contain a detailed audit trail and chain of custody of the transaction for its legality and validity to be proven.

Leveraging such processes, paperless operations can be an effective way for credit unions to differentiate their financial services and provide greater value to their members.

 

The Need for Superior Digital Security

Moving to a paperless environment requires a commitment to digital security. The newspapers announce one data breach or another almost every day, and the Great Supply Chain Hack of 2020 may haunt government data systems for years: “This is looking like it’s the worst hacking case in the history of America,” says one U.S. official. “They got into everything.”

 

In this environment of fear and reaction, the promise of distributed ledger technologies offers an appealing new approach to digital security. For example, blockchains have quickly been embraced as a solution for improving supply-chain security for data, communications, and logistics.

 

Unlike any other digital signature solution, ZorroSign was built from the ground-up on Hyperledger Fabric blockchain architecture. Hyperledger Fabric blockchains are permissions-based and requires all users to authenticate themselves before making requests to read or write into the distributed ledger (i.e., the “blocks” on the “chain”) or taking any action that adds to the blocks on the distributed ledger.

 

As a private blockchain, ZorroSign can ensure privacy is always maintained as only approved nodes (endpoint users) can write to ZorroSign’s blockchain. This is opposed to public blockchains—like Bitcoin and Ethereum—where anyone can be an endpoint and write to the blocks.

 

As a result, ZorroSign’s architecture has even tighter privacy and security measures than other blockchains. The key benefits of ZorroSign’s blockchain architecture include:

  • Immutability—A chronological record (with date and time stamps) of all transactions in multiple copies on the ledger are maintained to avoid any doubt or ambiguity. This chronological chain provides a robust chain of custody and audit trail capabilities. Blocks cannot be rewritten, edited, or deleted—only added to the ledge—and so ensure document immutability.
  • Privacy—Permissions-based private blockchain security and privacy of the members’ information by only allowing permissioned individuals to have access to the transaction.
  • Fraud Prevention—ZorroSign’s proprietary 4n6 (“forensics”) token can readily detect any document fraud, document tampering, or signature forgery as a tamper seal that runs on the blockchain.
  • Lifetime Escrow—While other digital signature platforms often use third-party digital security certificates that expire every two years, ZorroSign issues its own certificates that never expire for lifetime document escrow.

As credit unions move to more and more digital transactions, ZorroSign’s digital signature and document management platform can decrease costs, reduce errors, and increase productivity. Unlike other electronic signature solutions, ZorroSign’s platform is built on a private, permissioned Hyperledger Fabric blockchain architecture to secure digital assets and deliver security certificates with robust audit trails and lifetime document escrow.

 

“Blockchain technology can help make credit union transactions more secure, faster and less expensive,” says Shamsh Hadi, CEO and co-founder of ZorroSign.

 

Learn how your credit union can tap the benefits of paperless and operations and more securely manage your members’ digital signatures and documents . . . contact ZorroSign today!

ZorroSign Software Architect, Ruwan Dissanayake, recently answered some questions on his career path, goals, and insights on business and technology.

 

At ZorroSign, Ruwan is responsible for providing technical leadership to our development team; producing architectural blueprints for development; evaluating and assessing tools, technologies, and processes for improved security and functionality; ensuring software security; troubleshooting issues in code and design; creating product specifications and design documents, and meeting aggressive schedules for product development, quality assurance, and launch.

 

Question: How did you get to where you are professionally?

Answer: I have a Bachelor of Science degree (with Honors) from the University of Ruhuna in Sri Lanka, and postgraduate diploma in Computer Science from the University of Colombo School of Computing. I am hard working and dedicated to software development, passionate about what technology can do for people and businesses, and believe the incredible value blockchain can bring to the global economy.

 

Question: What attributes do you look for when hiring developers and other technical staff?

Answer: Knowledge, skills, and the right attitude are all key in hiring developers. Their ability to stay focused is important—software development can take a toll on you as challenges and deadlines rush at you.

 

Question: Why did you choose to work for ZorroSign?

Answer: Before I joined ZorroSign, I worked for a few multinational companies. I was looking for a company that was doing something innovative and developing a technology which could disrupt the world in a good way with its product. ZorroSign develops technology for tomorrow and I found ZorroSign to be the right place for me. I like the friendly working environment and opportunities to create exciting solutions.

 

Question: What are you most passionate about regarding technology?

Answer: I like that technology is evolving and helping people live better lives and conserve our environment. Everyone is paying greater attention to the limited resources we have in the world, and how to protect them, technology can play a major role. ZorroSign’s ability to reduce paper, printing, hard copy storage, and even courier logistics makes a significant impact on our environment.

 

Question: Give me one word that describes you best.

Answer: Supportive. I work for my team to achieve our technical accomplishments together.

 

Question: What are your long-term professional goals?

Answer: To make ZorroSign the number one solution in digital transaction management, while contributing to a green technology (digital signatures on blockchain) that will help make a safer, better, brighter world for generations to follow.

 

Question: What area of technology do you think will have the most growth in the next five years?

Answer: There are so many technologies poised to grow, I could not pick just one! Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are sure to continue growing, as are big data and augmented analytics. The Internet of Things (IoT) is still booming, quantum computing is stepping onto the world stage, and blockchain has a chance to become widely adopted across many industries.

 

Question: Business is often an adventure, what is your favorite life adventure?

Answer: I managed to escape from a few motorbike accidents over the years. When I thought it was the end, somehow I survived! During white-water rafting the vessel I was in flipped over, causing me to turn cycles in the water. I didn’t know what to do, so I held my breath and waited until my life jacket push me up to the surface, I was thankful to be alive.

 

Question: How do you spend your time outside of work?

Answer: I spend my time with my family. I love nature, specifically rain forests. In my leisure time I go on safaris and trekking.

 

Question: What is one thing you want everyone reading this to know about you?

Answer: My life’s journey has not always been smooth—it has had a lot of ups and downs. I kept my faith, stayed responsible, stayed accountable, and I always take ownership of all situations.

ZorroSign Chief Technology Officer, Priyal Walpita, recently sat down to discuss insight into who he is and how he got to where he is today, in both business and his personal life. Priyal, true to his technology background, was calculated and thoughtful in his answers. Check out this insightful interview of how passion can be the perfect motivator to success. Read on to discover the makings of a CTO.

 

Question: How did you get to where you are professionally?

Answer: As the Chief Technology Officer at ZorroSign one of the core concepts that I live by in my professional life is, “do what you love.” If you have passion for what you do it will catapult you to accomplish more. When you combine passion, hard work and dedication, anything is possible. I wake up each day excited about life and the work that I do. Identifying and following my passion from a very young age helped set the path for my current accomplishments. My professional career is my life’s passion.

 

Question: What attributes do you look for when hiring developers and other technical staff?

Answer: First, as technical knowledge workers, I expect all my employees to be just as passionate about their respective technological area of expertise as I am about AI and ML. I can teach knowledge and skill, but I can’t teach passion. Secondly, I look for employees that are constant learners, specifically, in Information Technology. As an industry that changes rapidly employees should proactively seek knowledge in order to stay up to date with trends and advancements. When employees are providing a solution to a problem, they should know about the latest and greatest technology and/or methodology that can solve that problem. Finally, I look for out of the box, innovative intellects that are capable of effectively working as part of a technical team, as many problems we need to solve take creative and dynamic thought. Prospective employees should be smart enough to critically analyze each situation and give a quick solid solution.

 

Question: Why did you choose to work for ZorroSign?

Answer: ZorroSign represents the technology of tomorrow. The current COVID-19 pandemic reinforced this as the technology seamlessly filled a critical need of a remote workforce. As a technology evangelist I firmly believe we are heading into a more connected world within cyberspace; one where people have little physical interaction among each other. For example, when I was a child, we frequently sent mail through the postal service. Innovation of SMS made sending a message instant, reducing the need for physical mail and the cost of communication. Soon it will become standard for people not to sign contracts, documents and agreements with wet ink. Instead they will use a Digital Transaction Management platform such as ZorroSign. I wanted to be at the forefront of this mass advancement where technology supports a global business environment, while also creating a best in class solution that saves trees, saves time, saves money, all while being the most secure solution on the market. This is the reason why I chose to work at ZorroSign.

 

Question: What are you most passionate about regarding technology?

Answer: Technology drives humankind to reaching their greatest potential. If you analyze human history, technology is the constant that has driven humankind forward. From innovation of making fire on demand to innovation of artificial intelligence, technology plays a major role in our evolution.

 

Question: Give me one word that describes you best.

Answer: Technocrat is the word that best describes me. I emphatically advocate for using technically skilled individuals to solve the world’s biggest problems.

 

Question: What are your long-term professional goals?

Answer: My long-term professional goal is to contribute to humankind with technological innovation that improves the lives of all people. Ultimately, I strive to have a positive impact on society with technological innovation that encourages and supports environmental sustainability that will make the environment healthier and more comfortable for generations of children to come.

 

Question: What professional skill do you need to improve most?

Answer: Public speaking was always difficult for me. Recently, I have diligently sought out opportunities to improve my public speaking and teaching ability by gaining more experience. Now I can better convey my message about new technologies and trends when speaking to small and large groups of people. If anyone is interested in attending any of my speaking engagements I often post them to LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/priyalwalpita/.

 

Question: What business leaders do you look up to?

Answer: Mr. Shamsh Hadi, CEO of ZorroSign is my most admired and inspirational leader. I have learned a lot from Shamsh’s thought process and superior decision-making ability. Apart from Shamsh, I am intrigued by Mr. Jeff Bezos and Mr. Bill Gates as people who have made great impact on the world with technology.

 

Question: Business is often an adventure, what is your favorite life adventure?

Answer: To date, my biggest life adventure was in my first year of university. I went on a jungle camping trip with a few of my friends. On this trip we managed to get lost inside the jungle. We did not have access to cell phones, GPS etc., and we had to adapt to utilize basic navigational skills to find our way out of the jungle. This experience taught me the importance of working as a team and how to adapt in a crisis while still maintaining presence of mind.

 

Question: How do you spend your time outside of work?

Answer: Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my children and family. When time permits, I like to learn more about new and emerging technology.

Question: What is one thing you want everyone reading this to know about you?

Answer: I started out on the ground level. I took a grassroots approach and started with the basics. I built my educational and professional foundation out of my passion for technology, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. I want young professionals to look at me as an example of what is achievable with hard work, sacrifice, passion and dedication. The journey to CTO was never easy, but it was always worth it.

Digital Transaction Management (DTM) helps to increase efficiency and productivity by simplifying paper-based processes and making them digital. The result is higher accuracy with fewer errors, improved controls, and customer satisfaction resulting from simplified process. When paper-based business transactions are converted into digital processes, we enjoy the benefits of efficiency, cost and time saving, and helping to save the environment by reducing the use of paper. Perhaps the biggest business benefit of going digital is the increase of productivity and the ability to monitor and track the progress of digital signature transactions at every step and in real time. There are three simple and easy steps to transacting a document digitally.

 

Document Preparation: This is the creation and preparation of digital documents that will control the transaction. In this first step, the process of preparing a document for signature could be as simple as filling out a form by hand or in digital format, or as complex as something that needs a formal document collaboration and compilation solution or document preparation service such as the one offered by paralegal staff. Once the document has been prepared, the second step in a digital document transaction is the execution of the document.

 

Document Execution: In the second step the documents, contracts, attachments, supporting documents, etc. are signed by one or more authorized parties in a particular sequence (workflow), filling in critical information. Security provisions are enforced and meta data is associated with signatory to ensure the authenticity and validity of each step of the digital documents’ transaction. Once a document set is completed by all parties, step three, is where the post execution process can begin.

 

Post Execution Processes: The post execution process includes securely storing the document, protecting it from tamper, alteration, and theft. In case of a dispute, the record must contain a detailed audit trail and chain of custody of the transaction for its legality and validity to be proven. Finally, only the authorized person should have access to and visibility into the document set. Post execution processes apply to both digital and printed versions of the documents.

 

Now that you understand the three steps of a digital document transaction it is important to understand why ZorroSign is the gold standard in post execution processes. ZorroSign’s patent pending 4n6 (forensics) token uses a private permissions-based blockchain to deliver verification, security, audit trail, chain of custody, along with other features. Users who access a ZorroSign’ed document through appropriate permissions can scan the 4n6 token and request access to view the documents history. With the 4n6 token, the parties in the workflow always have access to the document. Access to any external parties is limited to viewing the content of the document, its attachment, and audit trail and is based on permissions approved by the originator of the transaction.

ZorroSign CEO, Shamsh Hadi recently sat down to provide an insight into who he is and how he got to where he is today, in both business and his personal life. Shamsh didn’t hold back in this dynamic interview, allowing us a front-row seat into the makings of a technology pioneer and self-made business leader. Read on to discover the man behind the brand.

 

Question: You have had a very dynamic career, spanning multiple industries, how did you get to where you are professionally?

Answer: Sheer determination to succeed, passion to learn, clear and concise goal setting, and family support all contributed to my professional success.

 

Question: You have proven yourself as an effective leader, what attributes do you look for when hiring?

Answer: When hiring human resources, I look for six very specific attributes:

  1. Leadership skills
  2. Organizational skills
  3. Communication skills
  4. Intelligence
  5. Active listening skills
  6. Honesty, Ambition and a Strong Work Ethic

From experience, when a team member has these six attributes, they become a valuable member of team. If there are knowledge gaps or deficiencies, having the preceding attributes allows the team member to gain the skills on the job to continue to contribute to the company in a meaningful way.

 

Question: What is ZorroSign’s employee culture?

Answer: I believe we have a talented, driven, dedicated, innovative and ambitious employee culture at ZorroSign. The company work culture encourages employees to behave like a family and care about each other, their work and their family. The company strives to keep the culture strong by focusing on employee wellness, creating goals (work and personal), encouraging positivity, fostering corporate social responsibility, clear and concise communication and provides transparency from top down.

 

Question: What is one word that describes you the best?

Answer: Perseverant – In all aspects of my life, professional and personally, I go after what I want and am persistent until I reach the goal I have set.

 

Question: You have accomplished so much at a fairly young age, what are your future professional goals?

Answer: Professionally I have set out three goals for myself:

  1. Identifying and fostering leadership in others
  2. Building resilience
  3. Learning to fail gracefully

 

Question: What are your three biggest accomplishments?

Answer: Wow, that is a difficult question to answer, as accomplishment often advances as one develops and refines themselves. Being recognized as a subject matter expert in the Tech Industry is something I am proud of. Saving the planet – one page at a time with ZorroSign’s Digital Signature solution gives me purpose. Being accepted to the Presidents Program (A Harvard Business School and YPO initiative) has given me a sense of accomplishment. While none of these accomplishments define me, they are each things that I worked hard to achieve and they provide me intrinsic reward.

 

Question: It’s often said that great CEO’s have even greater mentors. What CEOs do you look up to?

Answer: There are so many CEOs who I look up to for various reasons. A short list of some of these business leaders are: Sara Blakely, Jeff Bezos, Satya Nadella, Bob Iger, Warren Buffet, Ken Chenault, Lisa Su, and Tony Hsieh. Each CEO on this list has qualities I admire, tenacity I respect, and accomplishment I lionize.

 

Question: Outside of growing ZorroSign into a best-in-class organization, what are you most passionate about, outside of your family?
Answer: I am passionate about traveling. I am a very curious person, so I am constantly wanting to learn or experience something new; traveling helps me check off these boxes. With travel comes an innate sense of adventure. Over the years I have found adventure allows me to remove myself from my comfort zone, which facilitates additional personal and professional growth.

Question: Business is often an adventure, tell me about your favorite life adventure.

Answer: I make sure every day is an adventure for me, otherwise life gets boring.

 

Question: What do you enjoy most outside of work?

Answer: A quiet and simple family man, outside of work I focus my time on family. They are the backbone, the support and motivation I have to get up every day and accomplish great things.

 

Question: What is one thing you want everyone reading this to know about you?

Answer: I am driven to ensure ZorroSign continues to be a world class company. Don’t underestimate my vision and plan for the company and the direction I am driving the organization. I love a good debate and encourage anyone, team members, customers, interested business professionals to reach out, roll up your sleeves and work towards a common goal!

Today, April 22, 2020 marks the 50th anniversary since the acknowledgement of Earth Day in 1970. Unlike previous years where you may have participated in events to clean-up your local parks/beaches, or activities focused on reduce, reuse, recycle, this year will be different with social distancing and stay-at-home orders. However, ZorroSign wants to remind you of the importance of living a paperless life and doing your part to reduce the use of paper. Check out our Environmental Savings Calculator and see what impact your organization could have on the environment by living a paperless life with ZorroSign.

 

Paperless Life with ZorroSign

 

ZorroSign is committed to having a positive impact on the environment through sustainable practices. Switching from doing business using paper to digital is not only a smart business decision but it is also good for the environment. Each time you use ZorroSign to digitally transact instead of printing, faxing, scanning, shipping documents to collect signatures, you save trees and water, reduce Carbon emission, while your business saves time and money.

 

Not convinced you should lead a paperless life? It is estimated that one tree produces roughly 8,000 regular sheets of copy paper. A study by the Minnesota Office of Environmental Assistance determined that the typical office consumes about 10,000 sheets of paper per worker every year. Assuming 8,000 pages per tree, a small office of 50 employees would use about 62 trees worth of paper each year. Further, it is estimated that it takes 3 gallons of water to produce a single sheet of copy paper. Using the example above, a small office of 50 employees would be responsible for using about 1.5 million gallons of water per year to produce the amount of office paper typically used.

 

To further the cause of Paperless Life, ZorroSign encourages all businesses to go digital, go Paperless, and save trees. Save A Tree – Plant A Tree is ZorroSign’s answer to how we can do our part to help the environment on Earth Day and everyday. For every 8,000 pages of paper you save by using ZorroSign, we plant a tree on your behalf.

 

Take Action

 

Many countries are still experiencing the impacts of the Coronavirus pandemic. In response, the official Earth Day organization has decided to go digital. If you are looking for virtual Earth Day activities, visit: https://www.earthday.org/. Studies show that by just eliminating or reducing use of paper, we can realize significant environmental benefits like conserving water, reducing Carbon emission, improving air quality, and reducing deforestation. Companies also realize large productivity gains and significant cost reduction. If you are looking to make a lasting impact and do your part to protect the world’s forests, don’t forget you can celebrate Earth Day every day with ZorroSign. Using ZorroSign Digital Signature solution and DTM, you can save trees, reduce your carbon footprint, all while saving some green. Ready to make a difference? Sign-up today and receive a free three-month trial.

 

Questions? Send an email to [email protected].

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic many companies are finding that their workforce has abruptly shifted to a remote workforce. This shift can be challenging for many companies and stressful for employees who are accustomed to working in an office. In this article we will explore five tools for increasing efficiency when working from home during the COVID-19 outbreak: collaboration software, scheduling software, eSignature & Digital Transaction Management software, meeting software, computer hardware & internet access.

 

Collaboration Software

 

Streamlined communication, collaboration and transparency are three important factors when working remote. Having the necessary software in place to encourage effective communication, promote transparent project management, and conduct reliable meetings can be the difference between a successful remote work team and one that fails to meet deliverables. There are many options on the market for software that accomplishes these goals, here are a few:

 

  • Communication
    • Slack is a collaboration tool that brings remote teams together. Slack’s instant messaging platform makes real-time communication seamless and engaging.
    • Microsoft Teams replaced what used to be Skype for Business. This collaboration platform is Microsoft’s answer to an online meeting hub. What we like most about Microsoft Teams is it combines video conferencing, calling and document collaboration into one easy to navigate app. (At the time of posting this blog article Microsoft Teams is being offered for free for users working remote.)
    • Google Hangouts is a professional business collaboration tool that gives users the ability to use both voice and text to communicate in real-time. Hangouts seems to work better with smaller teams from our experience.
  • Project Management
    • Asana is a web and mobile application aimed at helping teams organize, track and manage projects. Asana makes project collaboration simple with tools to help keep everyone working toward a common goal and completing projects on time.
    • Monday.com was previously Dapulse and is a collaborative space that helps teams plan, organize and track projects all in one place. Monday.com has a sleek platform with visually appealing charts that help keep track of projects.
    • Trello is a great collaboration tool built into a visually appealing app. Trello is fun and flexible with many uses both professional and personal. Great for a start-up or large family trying to keep appointments straight.
  • Document Collaboration
    • Google Docs is a cloud-based collaboration tool that allows teams of all sizes to create, share, edit and even publish documents and presentations.
    • Zoho Docs make document creation, storing, editing, sharing and collaboration seamless. Zoho Docs allows users to store all their files like music, videos and spreadsheets in one place.
    • Quip is a collaboration and communication tool for teams. Quip allows users to edit documents and spreadsheets in real-time.

 

Meeting Software

 

Virtual meeting platforms are a necessity when working from home. These platforms allow for visual communication in a virtual meeting space. They also allow users the ability to share computer screens in real time for a collaborative meeting experience. The following software allows for both internal and external virtual meetings.

 

  • GoToMeeting is great for large virtual meetings and is easy to get started. It also has the option to set up turnkey onsite meeting rooms with prepackaged equipment for those businesses that have a team of both location-dependent and location-independent employees.
  • WebEx is an enterprise solution for video conferencing, online meetings, screen share, and webinars. WebEx stands out because it integrates well with other applications like salesforce, Google Drive and Office 365.
  • Zoom allows users to visually connect without having to physically be together. Zoom is easy to navigate and works well with very large groups. One thing we like about Zoom is the easy option for those without a video connection to dial-in to meetings from their phone. (At the time of this blog post Zoom has extended its free account to have additional features for users working remote.)

 

Scheduling Software

 

One challenge with remote teams is the ability to schedule internal and external meetings without the need for lengthy email chains. While collaboration software can cut down on the need for meetings, sometimes meetings are necessary. These scheduling tools make scheduling meetings quick and help keep you organized.

 

  • You Can book me is a simple straightforward tool to help your team schedule online meetings.
  • Calendly touts the ability to help you schedule meetings without the back and forth emails.
  • Doodle is an online scheduling tool specifically focused on helping larger teams find the best time for a meeting that works with everyone’s schedule. After a time is identified the system will send out a calendar invite.

 

eSignature & Digital Transaction Management Software

 

eSignature and Digital Transaction Management (DTM) software can increase productivity and efficiency while reducing errors and cost. ZorroSign can help companies:

 

  • Track completed work, enabling accountability of workflow.
  • Centralize in-process and completed documents so users don’t have to check multiple sources.
  • Reduce fraud with blockchain based audit trail, so users have full trust and confidence that executed documents will be legally binding globally.
  • Execute documents and contracts anywhere, any time, and on any smart device.

 

Hardware & Internet

 

When working from home having secure computer hardware that can handle the type of work the employee does is very important. A data analyst, systems engineer, or graphic designer would each have very different hardware needs. Many people use laptops, so physically switching locations (from work to home) should not be too difficult. Just as important is the ability of an employee to have access to reliable and fast internet. Internet speed often varies depending on the location of the individual. In general, most people who work from home can comfortably conduct business with internet speeds around 25 Mbps. If the user is downloading very large files or needs to stream 4K content, 200+ Mbps or greater should be used. Unfortunately, in many locations outside of larger cities higher speed internet is not available. If an employee plans on working from multiple locations, a personal hotspot would be useful to ensure uninterrupted internet access.

 

Another consideration companies should take when relying on a remote workforce is security and privacy. Company issued equipment should have appropriate security software pre-installed. If an employee is using their own hardware then the company should have protocols in place to ensure sensitive data is protected. Companies should be concerned with cybersecurity and take steps to protect company equipment and information. A few tips for being cyber aware when working remote are to: secure your home network, encrypt sensitive files, dispose sensitive data securely, patch vulnerabilities when prompted, use multi-factor authentication to access systems, use a VPN, have MDM and EPM policies in place, and don’t open emails from unknown senders.

 

Conclusion

 

The bottom line is if you are not accustomed to working from home this can be a very stressful time. As you begin to navigate a new normal, having the correct tools in place to increase your efficiency will help reduce some of the stress you are feeling. Remember, when you are working remote, clear and consistent communication is very important. Using the tools and resources above can help you and your company succeed in the remote workforce environment. If your company doesn’t already have some of these tools in place, many of them are easy to implement with low costs. The right tools, with the right attitude and drive will make working remote through the COVID-19 outbreak fun, effective and efficient.

 

 

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Walk into any office and you will see remnants of paper use, whether it’s paper receipts, file cabinets full of contracts, printers, courier services, or even medical records. Paper has long been the standard in most businesses, but this is changing. With the recent ‘go digital’ movement, more and more companies are choosing to replace their paper processes with digital workflows. The companies who have already made the switch to digital are realizing many benefits, both for their employees and the company. There are cost savings, environmental benefits, and even increases in employee satisfaction. Paper processes are costly, in this article you will learn about 11 immediate cost savings your company can benefit from by adopting an eSignature and Digital Transaction Management (DTM) solution.

 

In order to fully understand potential cost savings of going digital, let’s first briefly explore the dollar costs associated with paper based processes, specifically, Print-Sign-Scan-Email or Courier processes. Businesses large and small generally have different processes, and this results in slightly different cost estimates for paper based processes. As a result it is better to provide a framework for cost calculation.

 

Cost Analysis Framework (USA estimates)

 

Copy paper

$5 / pack of 500 sheets

Printer/WorkCenter

B/W: $8,000

Color: $4,500

Printer Ink (per printer)

B/W: $250 50k pages

Color: $360 20k pages

Scanner

Included w/Printer/WorkCenter

Electricity

$99.06 /Month/printer

Steel file cabinets

$600 average / Cabinet

Folders & stationery

$300 / Year/Employee

$1000/Year/Employee (Law Firm)

Courier services

$33,000 to $65,000/Year

Man hours, Time

260 hours/ Employee/Year

Off-site paper storage

$0.72 /Box/Month

$864/100 Boxes/Yr.

Office space (file cabinets)

15 Sq.Ft (standard 4-drawer file cabinet)

Avg. $50 /Sq.Ft = $9000/Year

Insurance (Data Breach Policy)

$12k to $120k /Year

size of company, includes cyber attack coverage.

As you can see from the above cost analysis framework, paper processes are expensive and a major cost for businesses. Going digital and having your company adopt a paperless lifestyle can drastically impact company profits, increase employee satisfaction, while also positively impacting the environment. The cost savings of going digital are immediate, below is a list and additional details of just eleven of these savings:

 

    1. Copy Paper – Copy paper is costly, and printed documents are vulnerable to copying, theft or damaged, whereas digitally signed documents are encrypted and safely stored inside password protected accounts that are always accessible.
    2. Printer Ink – Paper processes require documents to be printed using printer ink or toner in order to wet sign a document. When going digital, the need for printer ink can be eliminated altogether or drastically reduced.
    3. Printer/WorkCenter – Printed documents require companies to invest in expensive printers or WorkCenters that are capable of handling extensive printing needs. Assuming the company is not printing and distributing printed marketing collateral, this expense can be reduced or eliminated by adopting a digital process.
    4. Folders & Stationery – When using paper processes, companies must organize printed materials that are then stored. The use of file folders and stationery are often the answer to methodically storing paper based documents. Transitioning to a digital process can eliminate or reduce the need for file folders and stationary.
    5. Filing Cabinets – Physically signed documents are often stored as an archive copy in storage cabinets. These filing cabinets cost money. Transitioning to electronic signatures will reduce or eliminate the need for filing cabinets.
    6. Office Space (for file cabinets) – Physically signed documents that are stored in filing cabinets use valuable office space. Adopting an eSignature and DTM solution reduces or eliminates the cost associated with extra office space to house these filing cabinets.
    7. Off-site paper storage – Often companies are forced to use off-site storage facilities for archived documents in order to make room for current and new documents in their daily office space. This opens the door for damage, theft or loss of these valuable documents when being transferred in between locations, not to mention the expense incurred to store these documents off-site. Prevent risk of loss or damage with eSignatures as physical filing of documents becomes unnecessary.
    8. Courier Services – Shipping and handling of paper documents for signature is avoided all together.
    9. Legal Fees – Using ZorroSign’s patent pending 4n6 (Forensics) Token Reader, ZorroSign offers non-repudiated audit trails and chain of custody. ZorroSign users can be confident their documents have been executed with tamper-proof security and enforceability. This audit trail and chain of custody can drastically reduce legal fees if a contract is disputed in a court of law.
    10. Insurance – Decrease of insurance premiums from lowering fire and theft risk by eliminating paper file storage.
    11. Personnel Resources:
      a. Save time retrieving documents.
      b. Save time managing signature process like tracking and follow-up, etc.
      c. Save time with the ability to manage multiple versions of documents and templates.
      d. Save time by identifying bottlenecks and make appropriate adjustments to the process in order to increase efficiency.

 

Along with immediate and long term cost savings achieved by using an eSignature and DTM solution, there are substantial environmental impacts, these include: conservation of water, energy, and trees as well as reduction of carbon footprint. Check out ZorroSign’s Environmental Savings Calculator to see your company’s potential environmental impact. For organizations adopting a ‘go digital’ mindset, there are tangible benefits like cost savings and intangible benefits like doing your part to save the environment, these benefits not only help the company, but its employees as well. Studies show that 3 in every 4 companies who adopt paperless processes experience a tangible payback within 12-18 months.

 

To learn more about ZorroSign’s green initiative, please visit Paperless Life and find out just how large of an environmental impact your company could have by going paperless. Click here to check out ZorroSign Plans & Pricing, enabling your company to do an accurate analysis on their total current cost of using paper and compare that cost to purchasing and using an eSignature and Digital Transaction Management system like ZorroSign.

 

 

References