Digital signature solutions on the rise: 40% of large companies already use them

The third Digital Office Index (DOI) from the digital association Bitkom shows that the use of digital signatures has grown considerably. The study also provides evidence that the coronavirus pandemic is making an impact on the digitalisation of companies. Francotyp-Postalia (FP), an expert in secure digital communication, partnered the study.

Berlin, 26 November 2020 – Digital signatures and electronic invoices are becoming increasingly prevalent in German offices. Large companies (500 or more employees) are clearly in the lead: A survey by the digital association Bitkom has shown that a full 40% already use digital signature solutions. For its “Digital Office Index” (DOI) study, Bitkom conducted a third representative survey of over 1,100 companies with more than 20 employees from all industries. The DOI tracks the digitalisation of office and administrative processes, as well as their advancement and their effects. For the first time, the study also provides insights into the level of digitalisation in the public sector, which equates to the average of all survey participants. Among all industries, banks and financial service providers take first place.

Signing documents securely and contactlessly
Digital signatures and electronic invoices in particular are becoming increasingly prevalent in German offices. Electronic signatures can be used to digitally sign and exchange contracts, invoices and other documents in a legally binding manner, from any location and within just a few minutes. The use of digital signature solutions has grown significantly since the last survey: While 13% of the surveyed companies used them in 2018, in 2020 that number grew to 18%, i.e. nearly one in five. And this trend is expected to continue: In 2018, 8% of the surveyed companies planned to use digital signature solutions in the future, which doubled to 16% in 2020. In connection with this, more and more companies are also opting for electronic invoices: 53% of the companies surveyed in 2018 generated at least half of their invoices electronically, while 65% do so in 2020, i.e. nearly two thirds. The public sector is the unexpected frontrunner here. 88% of survey respondents in this sector indicated that they generate at least half of their invoices electronically.

Growing digitalisation in companies
The coronavirus pandemic is playing a major role in the increased use of digital solutions: 18% of respondents said that coronavirus had accelerated the digitalisation of office and administrative processes in their company. In addition, 55% of the survey participants said that they had increased investment in hardware as a result of coronavirus. For 39%, this was also the case for software. Overall, digitalisation in companies and authorities will pick up speed again in the near future. Nearly three quarters (74%) of the companies surveyed already have a digitalisation strategy, 6% more than in 2018.

“The digitalisation of business processes is saving companies time and money, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. For example, signing processes via post or e-mail often cause delays, which can routinely lose companies income. With the help of digital signature solutions such as FP Sign, contracts and invoices can be signed and exchanged in a legally binding manner and from any location within just a few minutes,” says Stephan Vanberg, Managing Director of FP Mentana-Claimsoft.


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About Francotyp-Postalia (FP)

The listed and globally operating FP Group with headquarters in Berlin, Germany, is an expert in the secure mailing business and secure digital communication processes (FP = "Secure Digital Communication"). As market leader in Germany and Austria, the FP Group offers digital solutions for companies and public authorities as well as products and services for efficient mail processing and consolidation of business mail with its "Software/Digital", "Franking and Folding/Inserting" and "Mail Services" product segments. The Group achieved generated revenues of about 210 million euros in 2019. FP has subsidiaries in ten different countries and is represented by its own distributor network in a further 40 countries. With a company history spanning almost 100 years, FP possesses a unique DNA in the areas of actuating elements, sensor systems, cryptography and connectivity. FP has a global market share of more than twelve percent in franking systems and, in the digital sector, has unique, highly secure solutions for the Internet of Things (IoT/IIoT) and for the digital signing of documents.

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