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Half of annual product development investments in real estate and construction sector could be covered by introducing electronic signing

Ministry of the Environment
Publication date 16.9.2021 10.45
Press release

Measures with an impact of more than EUR 100 million are considered significant for the national economy. Nine major operators in the real estate and construction sector advocated for such a measure by organising a joint challenge campaign ‘Away with Pens’.

The challenge campaign encouraged the whole sector to become more efficient by starting to use electronic signatures. This was done by highlighting the financial and time savings and environmental impacts that can be achieved with this digitalisation step that may seem very small in scale. Companies in the real estate and construction sector used a benefit calculator to calculate the potential benefits to be gained from electronic signing for their operations. The impact was based on the euros, sheets of paper and working hours that were saved.
In connection with the campaign, KPMG Finland investigated the impact potential of starting to use electronic signatures. The conclusion was that electronic signing would have genuine and significant impacts on the national economy. According to the impact assessment, savings of more than EUR 300 million a year could be achieved in the real estate and construction sector if documents were signed electronically. This is about half of the annual investments in product development in the sector. Electronic signing would also save almost seven million working hours and more than 16 million sheets of paper every year.
“Many organisations in the real estate and construction sector responded to the challenge, but there is still a lot to be done in the digitalisation of processes. Digitalisation is not a value in itself, but the benefits to be gained must be assessed in a transparent and comprehensive way at the level of both the society as a whole and individual operators. From the perspective of impacts, there is a growing need for clear indicators,” says Vappu Id, Head of Community and Culture at KIRAHub, which designed and implemented the campaign.
The organisations that participated in the ‘Away with Pens’ challenge were the Confederation of Finnish Construction Industries RT, Finnish Association of Property Owners and Construction Clients RAKLI, Electrical Contractors´ Association of Finland STUL, Finnish Real Estate Management Federation, Real Estate Employers, Federation of Real Estate Agency, Building Information Foundation RTS, and Association of Finnish Architects' Offices ATL and Finnish Real Estate Federation. The campaign was implemented by KIRAHub and co-funded by the Ministry of the Environment.


Vappu Id
Head of Community and Culture,
[email protected]
+358 50 472 8700

Minna Perähuhta
Ministerial Adviser
Ministry of the Environment
+358 295 250 223
[email protected]