More than 80% of UK Companies Still Print Documents Just to Get Them Signed

ARX / YouGov UK Paper, Print & Signatures Survey

The YouGov survey, commissioned by ARX, was conducted in September 2013.
576 UK-based senior business respondents completed the survey from a variety of sectors and organisations.Methodology: This survey was conducted using an online interview administered to members of the YouGov Plc GB panel of 350,000+ individuals who have agreed to take part in surveys.

Key highlights:

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  • 84% of businesses print documents just for the purpose of obtaining “wet” signatures. The issue is even worse for larger organisations: 89% of medium-sized and 83% of large organizations admit to this.
  • The business sectors that print most documents just to get them signed are the public sector (95%) and financial services (94%), followed by business services (93%), manufacturing (92%) and engineering (89%). These figures include respondents who weren’t sure.
  • 62% of organisations print additional copies of documents just to get them signed. Larger businesses print more to obtain signatures (71%); and businesses services (65%) and engineering (63%) sectors admit to doing this most.
  • 40% of company departments need to collect two or more hand signatures for each ‘transaction’ document.
  • 72% of organisations who print documents say that processes are delayed because of the need to collect physical signatures, with the number rising to 77% of medium-sized and 83% of large ones. Financial services and manufacturing sectors suffer most process delays (76% for both).
  • 24% of organisations who experience delays lose more than one day just to collect signatures, rising to 31% of large businesses – almost twice that of medium-sized businesses (17%). The engineering sector suffers most time delays (28% lose more than one day), followed by business services (24%).