As COVID-19 swept through Australian business, forcing firms and clients to connect remotely, accountants were staring down the barrel of an archaic and confusing paper trail when it came to receiving document sign-off.
From sending hundreds of bundled documents through email or by post, to waiting weeks for return signature, the confusion wrought by existing digital signing tools and the old ‘snail mail’ left clients wading through paper and accountants waiting weeks for returned signatures.
According to Melissa Voss CA, head of partner and client relations at FuseWorks, this process added hundreds of hours to a fairly straightforward requirement and, during COVID-19, took away from the relationship building that is critical in uncertain times.
“Accountants are often managing large and complex family groups that can have a myriad of documents and often multiple recipients per bundle,” says Voss. “And not every person in the family needs to see every document, and the confusion of receiving so many transactional emails was a really poor experience for both accountants trying to keep track and clients needing to sign off.”
While mainstream digital signing tools existed, FuseWorks saw that accountants and their unique privacy and visibility requirements were under-served.
“Because we are accountants ourselves, we could see exactly what would streamline the signing process and could build a tool specific to client feedback,” says Voss.
“We could see exactly what would streamline the signing process and could build a tool specific to client feedback.”
FuseSign, a time-saving tool
To give accountants more clarity on the document-signing process, FuseWorks developed FuseSign, a tool that allows for specific signing, viewing and restriction permissions per document and recipient, eliminates the need for usernames and passwords, and creates a simple interface that clients can engage with instantly, even from a mobile device.
Paul Meaton, partner at Lincolns Beyond Numb3rs, a member firm of Walker Wayland Australasia, says that FuseSign shaved weeks off their signature turnaround time.
“We can now experience same-day turnaround for documents,” says Meaton. “And because we could introduce it to clients via a quick email or phone call, it has meant we have less follow-ups as it’s simple and seamless.”
FuseSign is fully cloud-based, offers a flexible credit system, and integrates with FuseDocs, another FuseWorks product which automates the document-collation process and creates professionally branded documents and reports for accountants.
“We love being able to manage one package for an entire family group and have multiple people sign and action the bundle,” says Meaton.
“We love being able to manage one package for an entire family group and have multiple people sign and action the bundle.”
A better client experience
FuseSign is fully cloud based, offers unlimited user accounts, and enables accountants to have complete visibility of the audit trail on each document and signer.
Voss explains that the FuseWorks team is focused on being agile with its development planning and to act on feature requests and ideas from clients quickly.
As COVID-19 establishes a new ‘flexible working’ normal, FuseWorks is now partnering with CA ANZ to help educate the industry on how digital signing can be used to improve the client’s experience, streamline processes and maintain compliance with governing bodies.
“We’ve seen FuseSign really resonate with the market already, and we are looking forward to seeing how it can make an impact on the industry’s approach to implementing digital signing,” says Voss.
Find out more:
FuseWorks invites firms to sign up for a free trial of its unique signing platform. Streamline accounting processes and deliver a superior client experience at www.fusesign.com