Signing Order: Guide to Everything You Need to Know

Feb 21, 2024
4 mins to read
Signing Order: Guide to Everything You Need to Know

Eliminate the hassle of repetitive signing. Discover the benefits of a signing order in our blog and simplify your workflow.

Don’t we all hate having to sign papers over and over again? It definitely gets tedious when there are stacks of contracts, agreements, and documents waiting for you to sign each one manually! This is why a signing order is needed at your company. Check out our blog to learn how you can make your life easier by implementing a signing order! ✍🏼

What is a Signing Order?

Like many of us, you may be asking, what exactly is a signing order? A signing order is a sequence of people needed to sign a specific document for approval. Think of it as a distribution list. For example, before closing a business deal, different departments and executives are required to give their approval before the deal becomes official. When there are multiple individuals involved in the signing process, it becomes long and tedious to wait for each person to finish signing the papers, especially when counter-signing is needed. This is why implementing a signing order is crucial to increasing the speed and productivity of getting through paperwork!

Why Does Signing Order Matter?

A signing order matters because, in most cases, a document is reviewed and signed by multiple people before an agreement. Without a properly signing order, confusion can quickly arise and it can be easy to lose track of who has signed which document. By implementing a signing order, it gives the contract owner control over who has reviewed and signed a contract. In high-stakes contracts that require executives, stakeholders, and other departments' approval, having a signing order ensures accuracy and consistency throughout the paperwork. 

An example of how the sequence of signing orders would occur could be: 

  1. An external manager who contacts the company for an offer signs the contract.
  2. The project manager, responsible for overseeing the project and budget, signs the contract.
  3. The CFO signs the contract, approving the budget of the agreement.

As reflected above, with the three necessary signatures from different individuals before a deal is closed, it can be tedious and messy without a signing order. 

What Could Happen Without a Signing Order? 

Using the same example previously, but without a signing order implemented. Imagine the CFO signs the contract first, and the project manager decides to change the scope of the project. Then, besides needing to make changes to the proposal, the CFO must resign the entire paper again. Given that changes and ambiguity often happen, without a signing order, individuals involved in the agreement will be required to resign documents multiple times, causing frustration for everyone. Implementing a signing order ensures that all documents are signed by all parties and reduces the chances of issues arising in the process. 

What are the Benefits of a Signing Order?

Implementing a signing order has many benefits, like efficiency, convenience, and security. Here are 5 more examples as to why a signing order is needed. 

1 - Simplified Signing Process

With multiple parties needing to sign a single contract, using a signing order reduces the need for manual work. Instead, with a signing order, the document moves through the approval process in the correct sequence automatically while reducing the risk of error. 

2 - Status Updates

Using a signing order platform allows you to have complete visibility of new updates and the status of the document. By being able to monitor the progress of the document, you will be able to step in and take action if needed.

3 - Eliminate Bottlenecks 

With a digital signing order, you will be able to reach people from all around the world without physical constraints or delays occurring. 

4 - Reduces Chances of Fraud

With digital signatures having audit trails and data tracking, it reduces the chances of risk fraud in the process. 

5 - Increase Accountability

Each party knows their role in the signing process, which increases accountability and prevents delays regarding who is required to sign next. 

Different Types of Signing Orders

Simple Sequential Routing Order

A simple sequential routing order is when the document is sent as soon as the previous signer has finished reviewing and signing. Signee 2 can only have access to the document after Singee 1 is finished. 

Parallel Routing Order

A parallel routing order is when the document is available to all signees at the same time. Anyone can sign the document as soon as they receive it; there is no need to wait until another signer is finished. 

Hybrid Routing Order

A hybrid routing order mixes simple sequential and parallel routing orders. It combines the two so that you can set your signing order so that the same signee will receive the same file twice. Once when they have to sign it and another when all the signees have finished signing. 

How to Set Up a Signing Order 

  1. Choose a signing order platform you’d like to use. Some examples are SigningOrder, Snapdocs, Better Proposals, and Juno. 
  2. The contract owner can add the list of individuals needed to sign in the specified sequence required.
  3. Send a signing request message through the platform. 
  4. The contract is sent to the first person in the signing order. Once they are done reviewing and signing, it will be passed on to the next person in the sequence. 
  5. The contract is automatically forwarded to the next person until all parties have reviewed and signed the agreement. 

When you are making business deals or agreements, signing documents is an unavoidable step. However, it doesn't have to be stressful! Implement a signing order in your company to increase convenience and reduce errors, delays, or confusion! 📝

Katherine Sau
Katherine Sau

Katherine is a Marketing and Content Intern at Litespace with a passion for digital marketing and business technology. She is excited to develop her skills in marketing while bringing in her past experiences to contribute to Litespace’s marketing and brand strategy.

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