Many advisors have already adopted electronic document signature tools for their practice to some degree, and this has been a huge win for accuracy and convenience when it comes to processing agreements. Chasing paper agreements (and paper checks) can become a huge hassle for you and for your clients.
The truth is, there are good reasons why some haven't been able to make the switch to electronic signature yet (including system interoperability issues and more), but I'd like to tell you why -- and how -- you can adopt electronic signatures starting today, if you use AdvicePay.
Back in November, we rolled out our eSignature integration, and we continue to expand our eSignature functionality. But before we take a look at all of the feature details, let's talk about why eSignature could be the best $15 you spend all month when it comes to being more efficient and providing a great client experience.
Why Use eSignature?
Ensure Contracts are Signed Before Accepting Payments
Have you ever started working with a client before collecting payment or receiving all of the necessary signed paperwork? Probably. It’s not ideal, but hey - they’ve agreed to start working with you and those “administrative” tasks will happen eventually. And in my experience, they usually do. Still, it’s not best practice and is likely a symptom of a manual process rather than any intentional avoidance on the client’s part.
That’s where AdvicePay comes in! Within our system, you can send documents out for signature and attach them to a payment request. Our system then ensures that the invoice cannot be paid until all documents are successfully signed by all signees. You can easily view the status of all contracts (either pending, completed, or voided), as well as the status of all payment requests, making it simple for you to see in real time where contracts and payments stand.
By organizing these steps into one workflow for your clients, they can quickly complete paperwork and approve payments, simply by logging into their AdvicePay account. (Printers, fax machines, checkbooks, and stamps not required!) You can then dive into building their financial plan knowing these key tasks have been completed.
Know that You've Received All Necessary Signatures
Often multiple people need to sign a document, and now they can! While the primary client needs an AdvicePay account, we now make it easy for other individuals to sign contracts, even when they don’t have an account themselves. This is helpful for partners, spouses, and larger firms who might need a compliance supervisor, for example, to sign documents (even when it doesn’t make sense for them to have their own AdvicePay account).
With AdvicePay, you can be sure that each contract gets all of the needed signatures, whether or not a signee has an AdvicePay account. This ensures you get complete contracts through an automated process every time. And, you can easily track the status of all signers, so you know who to nudge with a reminder, which you can easily send through AdvicePay.
We also just released a new feature, allowing clients to add partners, spouses, and/or administrative assistants to their account. This gives these additional users access to the client account under their own separate login where they will have their own eSignatures page (when relevant) and show up as a signee option to the advisor.
Make It Easy for Your Clients (and You): Send Multiple Files at Once so Everything Gets Signed
Sometimes one is just not enough - one cookie, one chip, one slice of pizza. See what I mean? The same is true of documents requiring client signatures. Sure, they’re not as delicious, but you probably have multiple documents you need to send. Making this as simple and convenient as possible for your clients is an important tone-setter for your long-term relationship to follow.
So, we've tried to make it as easy as possible. AdvicePay allows you to upload multiple files at once! These documents are then sent together to your client for one, easy signing experience. Again, this simplifies the signing process, creating one streamlined workflow for your clients where everything is signed at once. Easily add multiple documents into one template, by clicking “+ Add Another File.”
AdvicePay is designed specifically for unique the billing and payment challenges financial planners face. We want to streamline your entire billing process, increase your overall efficiency, and provide your clients with a great user experience, so you can continue to focus your time on best serving your clients. eSignature is one more feature we’ve added and continue to expand to help you do just that!
Because of a great partnership with HelloSign, eSignature in AdvicePay is only $15/month/user when added to a Professional or Enterprise subscription. This includes unlimited signatures and templates, and comes with some pretty helpful features designed for financial planners to make things more streamlined for your clients and more efficient for you!
Are you one of those shoppers who kicks the tires before you buy the car? We get it. You're welcome to watch the full eSignature demo on our website anytime.
TRY eSIGNATURE FOR FREE
This has been such a meaningful feature to our users, that we'd like to invite you to try it in your practice. For a limited time, we're inviting you to add eSignature to your *Professional or Enterprise subscription FREE for the first 30 days. That's a full test drive of eSignature functionality at no cost for one month.
Use the coupon code ESIGN4ME to enjoy your first 30 days of eSignature on us!
*eSignature is only compatible with AdvicePay Professional or AdvicePay Enterprise. If you use a Basic subscription, simply upgrade to grab this offer.
Have questions about eSignature? You can learn more about using this feature here, and you're always welcome to reach out to our amazing Support Team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re here for you, and happy to help!
Posted by Lucy Robeson, CFP®
Lucy uses her leadership skills to guide the AdvicePay team, while implementing the company vision, mission, and long-term goals. She is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional and has extensive experience in comprehensive financial planning, directing firm operations, and (unrelated) swimming with bull sharks while living in Fiji. Lucy is passionate about promoting the fee-for-service business model and helping financial planners understand how and why to adopt it into their businesses. When she’s not working, you can find Lucy on the tennis court, hiking in the mountains, and cheering on the Virginia Tech Hokies.