Helping to Modernise Contracts in the UK Public Sector

Every year, the public sector, including NHS Trusts and local and central government, spend millions of pounds on paper and manual processes. However, using Docusign to modernise contracts could help to reduce spending, increase efficiency and increase security. Moving to digital alternatives also means that organisations can deliver a better experience for patients and citizens. Adopting electronic signatures as part of this process offers powerful advantages to government and NHS teams. These include faster contract creation, automated workflows, and improved compliance and security for sensitive documents. In this article, we look at how contracts can be modernised in the UK public sector.

Focusing on citizens and patients, not paper

As the world has become more digital, expectations of services have changed - citizens and patients expect the same level of convenience from government and healthcare services as they receive in other areas of their lives. By digitising their system of agreements, healthcare and government agencies can automate the process of preparing, reviewing, signing and managing agreements with everyone from suppliers to employees and service users. That means services can be delivered faster, more efficiently and more accurately while admin headaches are reduced. 

Healthcare and government agencies can transform the experience provided to stakeholders using Docusign eSignature. For example, hospitals can share electronic consent forms with patients, which means patients can complete the form on their phone and submit it at the click of a button. A local authority looking to sign a contract with a supplier can access a library of pre-approved form templates, which can be easily customised and shared securely with all necessary parties for signature. It’s quick, easy and secure.

Everything you need to know about Docusign eSignature

Docusign eSignature is usually the first step in the digitisation of agreement processes, and it is part of a broader solution, the Docusign Agreement Cloud. With the growth of hybrid working, many public service workers are based at home or in a different location to colleagues, customers and patients. Docusign eSignature is ideal in this scenario because it allows someone to digitally complete a form with a secure and legally valid electronic signature. Other benefits of electronic signature include increasing the speed of contracts, reducing the cost of printing and sending agreements, and making life simpler for patients. 

Docusign eSignature is compliant with UK and EU regulations, including GDPR, as well as international standards including ISO 27001:2013, the highest level of information security certification available today. It also has built-in audit trails and allows users to apply an electronic seal to sensitive or confidential contracts before they are sent out for signature. 

Helping to Modernise Contracts in the UK Public Sector

COVID-19 safety precautions have made touchless service a requirement for many NHS trusts. Contactless consent forms, contracts and other agreements can help provide a safer environment for partners, patients and staff.  Docusign is trusted by more than 1,400 healthcare organisations around the world as a leading provider of telehealth solutions. Bringing many patient forms online in a touchless system like Docusign eSignature streamlines key steps in the patient journey so claims and documents can quickly and easily be located on the patient’s phone or home computer. It results in faster processing of patient information. It makes sense for healthcare trusts to go digital.

It is also beneficial for employees, new NHS recruits can complete vital onboarding paperwork remotely. For example, at the East London NHS Trusts, new hires were previously required to print, complete, and sign a 38-page PDF document as part of their onboarding process. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trust implemented Docusign, which made the team much more efficient. 

Local and central government procurement needs to be fair, transparent and efficient. The Docusign Agreement Cloud can drive huge efficiencies by supporting workflows that allow documents to be created, shared, stored and managed more easily. This technology can improve government processes such as HR, housing and social care. For example, Docusign eSignature is being used to replace paper forms such as change of address for housing tenants or tenancy agreements. Swansea Council has recently implemented Docusign eSignature. As a result, the council has seen a 67% increase in the speed of the entire contract process, from creation to execution - saving around 12,000 sheets of paper every year.

Docusign eSignature is working with organisations across the NHS and local and central government to give back time and resources to create value, reduce risks and provide a modern, efficient service to patients, staff, partners and citizens.