We’ve talked about why having a business continuity plan is important and how it can help you carry on after events that would bring unprepared organizations to their knees. We’ve also talked about what makes a successful plan. Now we’ll talk about how enterprise content management (ECM) can fit into that plan and how it can help you overcome threats to your organization’s information.

While more and more information is being digitized in the form of emails, PDFs, videos and more, there is still plenty of information left lying on people’s desk: contracts that need multiple signatures, incoming checks that need to be processed, résumés that need to be passed around and the like. And if anything ever happens to the only copy you have, you can bet that the work process will be at a standstill until you receive another copy.

Law firm Arenson & Zimmerman was particularly pleased to have an ECM “backup” in place when severe flooding prevented staff from working in the law firm’s offices for more than four weeks. Authorized employees used the firm’s ECM system to access records remotely, which was vital to producing billable work “with little disruption to business,” says Legal Assistant Laurie L. Chappell.

Pulte Mortgage, meanwhile, notes that ECM plays a critical part in ensuring continuity of operations during the harsh Colorado winters. “In the past, if we heard a snowstorm was coming, we’d move all the paper loan files that were due to close to a hotel and house our processors there until the storm had passed,” says CIO Gary Ives. “Giving them access to the information they need from home saves money and energy.”

ECM solutions play an important part in your organization’s business continuity plan by ensuring that all organizational content is properly maintained and accessible when needed. Effectively delivering on a continuity plan that includes ECM as one of its components will not only enhance your ability to recover from a system failure, but will also help you to better define what records are crucial to your organization and improve your overall records management strategy.
Is your organization ready for a major disaster? Get your copy of the “Ultimate Guide to Business Continuity Planning” and prepare your organization’s documents for a disaster.

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