Last review date 02/12/2022

An electronic signature can be a digital image of a ‘wet’ handwritten signature, but it can also be a name on an email from a known account or a name on an electronic form.

Some providers/services insist however on having a digital image of a signature on a referral form and the article below guides you on how to do this. 

(Disclaimer: Please note that this method could be used fraudulently by another person who can easily copy and paste your signature, but the risk is similar to someone who could also just photograph your wet signature and use it themselves instead too).

Creating an electronic signature to use in Word

  • Write your signature on a piece of white paper
  • Take a photo of your signature using your phone or scan it
  • Email it to yourself
  • From the email save the image to your PC
  • Crop the image and perhaps lighten up the background in PowerPoint

Then, in any word document; 

  • Click on 'Insert > Pictures' and find your signature
  • Insert your image and resize (if you haven't already) to a usual signature size  (you can also add some text such as your full name, position, place of work either underneath or to the side)

    Example signature:

  • Select your image (and any additional text you may want to add with your signature) 
  • Go to Insert > Quick Parts > Save selection to quick part gallery
  • Give it a Name
  • Change the gallery type to ‘AutoText’ click ok


Now whenever you need to add your signature you can click at the position in the document and go to ‘Insert > Quick Parts' and select your signature.


Quick Access Toolbar

Adding an 'AutoText' signature can be even quicker if you add 'AutoText'  to the 'Word Quick Access Toolbar'

  • Click on the chevron customise option at the far right of the 'Quick Access Toolbar' and select 'More Commands' 
  • Select 'Insert Tab' on the 'Choose commands from:' list
  • Find the option for 'AutoText' and add it to the right-hand side 
  • Click ok

Now, whenever you need to add a digital signature, just click on the 'AutoText' option on the 'Quick Action Toolbar'  

Please note: 

Depending on how your network is set up will determine if this 'Autotext' will follow you from one PC to the next. So this may need to be set up on each PC that you use. 

It is advisable to discuss this with the practice management to ensure that you have permission before implementing this as it may not be acceptable locally under the terms of your Information Governance policies