Guide to Protecting and Recovering Important Business Documents from Water Damage
by Mashum Mollah Small Business 12 September 2017
Every home and business owner in and around Chicago are aware of the possible threats to homes and offices arising from the unpredictable weather conditions that we are currently experiencing. From forest wildfires to flash floods, and from severe hurricanes to devastating storms that flood vast swathes of land, there are high chances of property damage due to water accumulation in homes and offices. The concern about such unpredictable devastations is arising because the weather is getting from bad to worse. There is little that you can do to prevent such calamities from happening, but you can take steps to ensure that in the event of a storm or flood, you can recover from the disaster and restore the property and business to its original status as soon as possible.
Seek professional help for restoration
Seeking professional help is indeed an excellent idea! Reputed companies such as Premier Restoration are known to provide specialized services. However, to speed up the process of restoration, you must know how to respond to the situation correctly. Regardless of the cause, water damages can be quite detrimental to the property as it creates serious problems for homes and offices. It creates an unhealthy environment all-around with molds forming on the walls, damaging the air quality, and soaked flooring and frames, threatening the integrity of the building structure. Protecting business documents must be high on your agenda for which you must take some preventive measures. Doing so, you can reduce spending on recovering documents, which will help your business to bounce back to its former shape in no time! Keep reading to know how you can do it.
Identify critical documents to protect from water damage
You must have an emergency plan in place to protect business documents from possible water damage, which may not only occur from natural calamities, but also from leaking pipes and clogged drains. When important documents get damaged by water, it can harm your business considerably because even though you might be able to operate out of office during the times of disaster, in no way can you run the business without the appropriate documents. Loss of important and sensitive documents can even ruin your business. Therefore, identifying all documents that are critical for business is the first step that you must take, and then think about measures that would help to protect it.
Arrange for proper storage of vital documents
After identifying the critical documents, arrange for its proper storage so that it remains unaffected by fire and water. Invest in fireproof and waterproof cabinets with suitable locking arrangements so that you can store the documents without any worries. The investment, though costly initially, turns out quite less as compared to the business loss that you might incur from damaged documents. Place the documents inside zip lock bags that you put into airtight containers. Keep the containers at the topmost shelves of filing cabinets inside a locked room.
Take backup of all critical documents by scanning
Scanning all documents for micro storage is a trend in modern business for saving storage space required in archiving. This technique comes handy when disaster strikes because the scanned copies stay with you for retrieval even if the original documents are damaged. Professional companies offer comprehensive service in digitizing entire office records that can save your business from any calamity that destroys documents.
Of site storage of vital documents
Certain essential documents are not regularly required for business as you can carry on with its copies. For such documents, you can arrange for a safe site outside the office or business premises for storage. It could be your home or the safe deposit locker of banks, where you can store these documents without exposing them to the risk of damage from water and fire.
Have an emergency plan in place
It is imperative to train your employees about their role during an emergency when disaster strikes. They have to know what safety measures to take and how to minimize damage from water. Have clear instructions in the plan about the steps that employees must take to keep files and equipment safe. The plan must include what to do for post-storm recovery as well as plan for restoration of books and wet papers.
Choose a team leader
You must assign the task of document protection to a team leader who has to take complete responsibility of looking after the documents. Depending on the size of the organization, there can be more than one leader for every department. Leaders must be trained so that they are well conversant with the disaster plans and emergency procedures and have coordinating skills to channelize efforts in protecting documents before storms strike.
Wherever you might find your efforts falling short, you can take help from a professional document restoration company.
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