SignRequest services a broad spectrum of customers and sectors. But what kind of results can it deliver in a complex enterprise environment? 

To find out, we interviewed Bert Kremer, head of the ICT department of ArtEZ, one of the Netherlands' leading art universities.

ArtEZ educates students in a multitude of creative disciplines, from fashion and graphic design to theater, dance and music; interior design to architecture.  With three locations, 42 departments, more than 3000 students, and 900+ employees, it’s fair to say ArtEZ is a complex organization. 

Bert Kremer, the university’s head of ICT, has a full plate of responsibilities that includes e-learning platforms, the university staff and student intranet, plus all software and hardware. 

Finding solutions that make managing that environment easier can be hugely beneficial.

Why e-signatures 

‘Internally we were accustomed to a lengthy approvals process. I would receive a PDF for approval, walk it to the printer, add my signature, walk to the copy machine to scan the document, email it to myself, and then send it on to the next person in the chain. Each person had to follow the same steps. You can imagine the time required to get a simple document signed.

‘When Corona hit, we were forced to go work from home literally overnight,’ says Bert. It was time to start looking for an e-signature tool that eliminated the print, scan, sign process and made it easier to get documents signed.’

Why SignRequest

‘We needed a solution to get signatures on quotes and contracts, as well as internship agreements with other schools and companies, transition reports for students, and so forth. 

‘We use an HR software called HR-today that has integrated SignRequest, so we knew how easy it was to use. I did look at other vendors, but none of them were as intuitive as SignRequest. It was easy to move all our signature processes. Price was a consideration, but the Teams function and overall ease-of-use were the real deciding factors.’

Working together in teams

‘I especially love the team functionality and the fact that we can assign users and manage access levels by department. As the system admins it’s also important that we have all accounts stored together in one cloud.’

Some ArtEZ employees work part-time and job-share. For them SignRequest makes it easy to hand over a process already in motion to a colleague’. 

But how do you onboard so many employees from different departments? 

‘We started by sending out an email to every employee we thought could benefit from the solution. We also added it to our Intranet so everyone could see that we’d included digital signatures on our software list, and encouraged staff to request a Signrequest account. 

‘Most of them did.’

‘I would give the onboarding process top marks, a 9 out of 10. Someone from SignRequest gave us training, and because it works so intuitively; when you use it once, you have it.

‘As administrators, it is also easy to create a new account: when a new employee starts, we can set them up within one minute.’

Could SignRequest improve?

We’re really pleased with SignRequest. It really filled a void after the coronavirus hit.

‘Yesterday, I received a quote from a supplier. I prepared a document, signed, and sent it within 3 minutes. If you compare this to the manual way we used to do things, we’re saving a full 5 minutes per document.’

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