“There were many upgrades to CargillAg.ca including the ability to view all grain contract types online and to see contract cancellation details for a more accurate overall view of a customers’ grain picture with Cargill,” Joel Wiebe, marketing communications specialist for Cargill AgHorizons, told Milling & Grains. “E-signature was the most significant enhancement to CargillAg.ca, and it took approximately nine months to develop from conception to launch.”
Traditionally, customers sign paper contracts that are then sent via mail, fax, or delivered in person Wiebe said, noting that the company saw a void for the service when noting that the rest of its customers, business is already conducted online.
“Customers are always looking for ways to enhance the way they interact with brands,” he said. “Cargill invested in e-signature functionality to make the lives of our customers easier. They are becoming more and more reliant on technology and we’ve realized that we need to provide them with solutions that align with how the rest of their business operates.”
Growth set for the future?
CargillAg.ca currently has 3,500 registrants, but they have to visit a Cargill location or speak with a representative to have the e-signature function enabled. Wiebe declined to disclose the number of customers who’ve signed up at this point, adding: “This functionality just launched this month so the number is steadily growing.”
According to Cargill, the first Canadian farmer to adopt electronic contact signing was Ron Krahn, co-owner of Providence Farms in Manitoba.
“For me, the most significant advantage to Cargill’s new e-signature is the time saving involved,” Krahn said. “Being able to complete a contract after business hours and knowing the transaction is completed gives peace of mind. I did our first e-signature in our farm office and it couldn’t get more convenient than that.”
Cargill employees have also committed to plant one tree for every e-signature registration that goes through in 2014.