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Cloud-Based Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) Protects Documents From A Natural Disaster


For much of the past month, Colorado has suffered immense flooding along the state's Front Range from Colorado Springs north to Fort Collins. The damage has been significant across much of the the Centennial State, and as the flooding begins to subside, residents are cleaning up and getting their lives back to normal.

One of the state's biggest challenges pertains to its business sector.

Colorado Businesses Devastated

As in most small towns, the town of Lyndon, Colorado, doesn't have a built in way to help businesses after a natural disaster. There is no safety to help small businesses impacted by the flooding. The vast majority of companies have to fend for themselves, with little to no help from outside sources. NPR recently paid a visit to the northern Colorado town and found a number of small business owners who have been struggling to pick up the pieces in the wake of one of the biggest floods in the state's history.

Lyons Mayor Julie Van Damelen spoke with the news source about the impact the flood has had on her community, indicating that roughly 170 businesses have closed because of the natural disaster.

"It is agonizing to watch all of them be closed at once," she said.

No Safety Net

And while small businesses across the state are fighting tooth and nail to remain open amid the destruction, it's important to note that recovering from a disaster of this magnitude is not a challenge exclusive to Colorado or to small businesses. Weather has always taken a toll on the business sector. Due to a lack of resources, small businesses typically suffer more severely than their larger counterparts. A large number of businesses impacted by Hurricane Sandy remain closed to this day. In fact, according to statistics from the U.S. Small Business Administration, 25 percent of small businesses that close due to a natural disaster never reopen. That's why it's important for businesses to implement strategies to reduce the impact of a disaster.

There are many things to be cognizant of during the preparation process. A flood has the potential to damage the structure of an office building and, perhaps most importantly, its information. Ultimately, a broken computer can be replaced and damage to an office building can be repaired. But if important data or documentation is destroyed, replacing it could be the most challenging aspect of the recovery effort.

Virtual Document Management and Storage Mitigates Loss Issues

One way to alleviate the impact of a natural disaster is to remove the risk of losing pertinent documents by storing them in a virtual environment. Suppose your organization only kept physical copies of your contracts in the basement of your facility. If the basement floods and those documents are damaged, replacing them would likely be a time-consuming and costly endeavor. Imagine having to redraft a contract finalized after a lengthy negotiation process. The headaches alone would be taxing on any organization.

If contracts are uploaded and stored in a cloud-based repository, the risk of them being damaged due to a flood or other severe weather-related incident is effectively eliminated. While the road to recovery isn't easy, preserving all important documentation, like contracts, can go a long way toward reducing the impact of similar disasters. Either alone or in combination, a cloud-based a Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) solution such as openSource contract management or an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solution such as Box.com make the safe retention and management of important documents dramatically easier and more effective.

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