- Sachin Goradia
Colorado’s Excellent Response in a Time of Crisis
The state of Colorado has responded efficiently and effectively to the threats that COVID-19 has on small businesses and nonprofits. The state government has managed to remain organized, resilient, and dedicated to providing for its residents. Here are several factors that help Colorado stand out from other states.
Organizing resources to make them easily accessible. Colorado has done a fantastic job of organizing its resources for people to use. The state has set up an easy-to-navigate directory specifically dedicated to COVID-19 related resources that are provided by the government. This resource allows individuals to easily access Colorado’s vast resources by specifying exactly what they are looking for. For example, if you are looking for information surrounding COVID-19 and its effects on the state’s higher education, you just click on the “Higher Education” tab and it will redirect you to a website dedicated to Colorado’s higher education response surrounding COVID. Colorado has done this with a wide variety of issues, from agriculture to public safety to energy to many other sectors. Ensuring that information is easily accessible and organized in a time like this proves that Colorado is headed on the right track towards recovery.
Resources are being updated in a timely and consistent fashion. Because current resources for businesses are being depleted and new ones are popping up in their place, it may be hard to figure out what resources are available at any given time. The last thing anyone wants is to click on a loan or grant application only to read that the funding has been depleted or that the deadline has passed. Colorado has recognized this and has realized the importance of providing information in a timely matter. This is why they have incorporated a notification on their pages about when the site was last updated. For example, Colorado’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade has created a resource center that displays when the information was last updated at the top of the page. This small but useful feature lets people know that the information they are accessing is reliable and not outdated. This feature should be incorporated by other states for their government websites and resource databases.
A spreadsheet of resources. This one should be a no-brainer. Sifting through resources at a local level, state level, and federal level may make it difficult to find exactly what you are looking for. Colorado has recognized this as an issue and went ahead and created a spreadsheet of resources for people to take advantage of (Colorado OEDIT). This spreadsheet provides reliable information on loans, grants, lines of credit, and other financial resources while at the same time providing information on deadlines, details, requirements, and contact information. It also includes a robust account of funding resources at the local level, state level, and federal level so that individuals can find exactly what resources they are looking for. Did I mention that this resource is updated daily? This is your one-stop-shop for finding the right resources for your business, without the need of going through outdated and unorganized government websites. This is a simple yet effective tool that more state governments can utilize to provide updated and accurate information to their constituents.
The Key Takeaways
Colorado has displayed that it was prepared to handle a crisis of this level. It has displayed resiliency and strength in an uncertain time by remaining organized, providing consistently updated information, and making this information easily accessible. These are traits that other states can incorporate into their crisis management responses to better serve their communities in the future.
Although it is easier said than done when it comes to implementing changes, improving organizational capacity will only make the government more effective and streamlined in handling adverse situations. Hopefully, this pandemic will encourage states to take a more proactive approach in ensuring accessibility to resources in future circumstances.