Whether it is a merger, acquisition, joint venture, fundraising, IPO, or real estate deal, due diligence is a decisive phase of the transaction. The process includes tons of data sharing, data analysis and verification, and never-ending communications. The due diligence process usually takes longer, but virtual data rooms can reduce that time to a great extent.
Data room software is a two-decade-old technology initially designed to facilitate due diligence in M&As. Today, a virtual data room is a common corporate asset specifically used in dealmaking. But why do businesses tend to use an online data room for due diligence when there are hundreds of other similar solutions?
In this article, you will discover:
- What is a virtual data room?
- What are the benefits of using data room services in due diligence?
- Why do businesses opt for data room due diligence?
What is virtual data room software?
In basic terms, virtual or online data room software is a digital corporate document repository globally used for data storage, sharing, distribution, and management.
In broader terms, an electronic data room is a combination of multiple technologies with three primary functions:
- Data management. VDRs possess every single tool required for efficient data management. You can create live document links, restrict document access, search any file with ease, distribute hundreds of files with users at once, organize documents as per your ease, etc.
- Online communication. Data rooms are multi-faceted business solutions. In addition to data management, VDRs provide a large range of modern-day business communication tools. Common examples include chat messengers, dedicated emails, Q&A modules, audio or video conferencing tools, voting tools, live polls, etc.
- Deal management. Deal management or dealmaking is the biggest use case of digital data rooms. VDRs facilitate corporate deals through their collaboration and data management tools. Many VDRs have data analytics, task management, due diligence checklist, contract templates, etc.
Why do businesses use a virtual data room for due diligence?
1. Easier and quicker file management
File management in a data room is easier and way faster than traditional data storage methods. It is important for the data room management to organize files and make them easily available to advisors, buyers, intermediates, and others involved in due diligence. Due diligence data room providers often provide detailed and customizable due diligence checklists. Companies can save time by organizing their data in the recommended sequence.
Moreover, data rooms have drag-n-drop, and bulk upload features to upload bulk file quantities in no time. Other notable features include:
- File viewer, which allows you to view any document without any external application.
- Full-text search feature gives you the luxury to locate a file by simply running a keyword or phrase in the search bar, and VDR will show all relevant searches.
- PDF converter converts any document into PDF form for easy viewing.
2. Maximum data protection
Document protection is indeed the biggest reason why companies use a virtual data room for due diligence. Hundreds and thousands of confidential or important documents are shared, reviewed, and exchanged during due diligence. The target company always faces a great data theft risk during the process.
Online data room software provides protection at multiple levels. First, due diligence data room vendors are mostly ISO-certified. Other common certifications include SSAE 16, SOC1, SOC Type II, FINRA, FISMA, HIPAA, etc.
The most important security features in VDRs include:
- Document access control
- Two-factor authorization
- Dynamic watermarks
- Permission settings
- Document access revocation
- Remote device purging
3. Transparency and analytics
Many futuristic virtual data rooms allow the management to track all activities in the VDR. The audit logs are super effective in tracking every user, every file, and anything that’s happening in the VDR. If someone is doing something prohibited, they can be easily held responsible.
Moreover, the data analytics feature in the VDR helps target companies arrange their data in buyers’ preferred manner. The management can track what kind of files are opened most by the buyers. Management can also track the progress of the process and make changes accordingly.
4. Cost- and time-efficiency
Faster data sharing, easy access to documents, and real-time communication are time-saving benefits of virtual data rooms.
Apart from that, VDRs help avoid file and task duplication. The data room will notify you if you are duplicating a file. Similarly, the dashboard will allow the users to monitor the progress of their team members and the documents they are working on, which helps in avoiding task duplication.
What’s more, data rooms save thousands of dollars which companies might have to spend on paper, printing, and courier expenses. Virtual data rooms also minimize the need for physical meetings and the costs attached to them.
Virtual data rooms simplify due diligence by providing data security, control over confidential documents, safer and real-time communication, easy access to due diligence data, and minimizing administrative expenses.
Consider conducting your own data room comparison among the best virtual data room providers to settle on the best solution for your needs.