Electronic Document Flow: F.A.Q.
As most of our clients were forced to switch to remote work, we often receive questions on electronic document flow (EDF). We decided to pick and answer the most common ones.
Is it possible to implement it now?
EDF can be implemented at any time.
You will need to take the following steps:
- selecting a service provider and a pricing plan
- applying for connection online
- paying for the service invoice
- registering an electronic signature (ES)
Your company’s account will start working within one day of the identity verification and the e-signature registration. The ES can be delivered via a courier.
What are the requirements and how long will it take?
1. Registering an electronic signature
There are several types of electronic signatures that can be used for various tasks: from participating in electronic auctions to working on government portals.
We recommend using an enhanced qualified electronic signature, which provides more options.
There are 2 options of using an electronic signature:
- installing on a computer
- using an ES on a USB flash drive
To issue an ES, you will need a passport and a "SNILS" (СНИЛС, Insurance Number of Individual Ledger Account). The e-signature should be renewed every year.
Documents are signed via the company’s personal account on the website of the electronic document flow provider.
In some cases, there may be conflicts with foreign security systems and servers, and the help of your IT team may be required.
2. Subscription to the electronic document flow system
The choice of a system and the cost of using it depends on the objectives and the number of documents. It is also highly important to pay attention to the possibility and convenience of integration with your accounting system.
The timing of the transition and processes setup depends on many factors, but in average it takes about 2 days.
Usually, a short online training of employees based on the provider's materials is sufficient.
How will EDF affect the company’s business processes?
Deployment of electronic document flow in a company has a number of advantages both for internal document management and exchanging documents with contractors.
Here are some of them:
- Employee roles can be flexibly managed: negotiation, transfer, approval. However, only employees with an ES have the right to sign electronic documents.
- Employees can connect to the system remotely from any device using the individual username and password. This allows to organize the electronic signing of several types of documents without a physical presence of employees in the office.
- Deployment of EDF minimizes the time for internal approval and exchange with contractors, eliminates the logistics costs of transferring document copies.
- You can set up notifications with status information for each document coming into the system in order to monitor the execution process.
- You can easily search and download documents (for example, to provide them to the tax service upon request).
- All changes in documents get logged.
What does the price depend on?
Based on the objectives, the system allows you to:
- receive documents from suppliers
- receive + send documents to your clients.
The price depends on several factors:
- number of documents sent to clients
- business processes in the company
- need to integrate with accounting systems
- need to extend the standard functionality of the system
To attract new clients many EDF providers have now launched special offers on system access and ES registration.
Contractors do not want to switch to EDF, what should we do?
Current legislation is increasingly focusing on transferring transactions to an electronic form: it is already a must for many companies to use EDF (e.g. those involved in labeling).
Moreover, in the current conditions, the relevance of electronic document flow has significantly increased. Possibly, some of your contractors have the transition planned or being carried out right now. Therefore, we recommend considering this option for your business as well.