You may likely have heard about virtual data rooms or even used one. Data room software is a high-end data management solution, but if you are looking for one for yourself or your business, then just relying on customer reviews or Google searches is not enough.
That’s because virtual data room providers nowadays offer specialized services. For instance, some data room services like DealRoom particularly target M&As, and they are on the pricier side. If you need a virtual data room for the long run, then M&A data rooms might not be a wise choice.
Similarly, some data room vendors do not offer task management features, and a company that needs data rooms to manage and track tasks assigned to business teams might not benefit from such vendors.
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So, what is the solution? How to find the right virtual data room for you or your business? Here is the answer.
Important factors to consider when choosing online data room software
Your perfect virtual data room is the one that fulfills your business needs. That is why the purchase process starts with identifying why you need data room software.
Businesses use virtual data rooms for numerous purposes such as due diligence, data management, deal-making, online communication, project management, etc. Some need data rooms temporarily, while others may be eyeing long-term usage.
You can start by asking questions like:
- What type of files do you wish to store in your VDR?
- How much data storage capacity will be enough for you?
- Do you need the VDR for the whole company or for any specific department(s)?
- How will it affect your business workflow?
- Who (in your organization) will use the data room?
At this stage, it is very important to be aware of your budget. A lot of data room vendors are flexible enough to create custom packages for you, but the price may increase. So, knowing how much you can spend on your desired electronic data room will help you narrow down your research.
After identifying your needs, you can easily determine which features you want in your VDR software. VDRs are set up differently for due diligence, project management, or simple data storage and sharing. So it is totally up to you what type of features you need.
However, no matter what you need a data room for, never compromise on the following features.
Security is a fundamental feature in any data room software. Compromising on security can cost you your clients and partners or even push you to the brink of destruction. For starters, don’t even consider a data room that is not ISO 27081 compliant; it is a necessity. Apart from that, look out for other certifications like SOC2, FINRA, SSAE 16, etc.
Other important security features include two-step verification, digital watermarks, strong data encryption methods (ideally 256-bit), remote device purging, and NDA templates (optional). Lastly, audit logs are a must-have security feature; it allows you to monitor data room activities.
As your employees will be regularly sharing or using documents in the VDR, it is important to have document access control. You should be able to control who can or cannot access specified documents. It is important to have the view-only feature in your VDR.
Document management features like full-text search, indexing, bulk upload, drag-n-drop feature, and built-in excel and document viewer not only save time but reduce reliance on third-party apps.
The quality of customer support service is one of the decisive factors. Responsive and helpful customer support is a must-have feature.
Comparing multiple solutions is always handy for choosing the best data room software. It allows you to explore multiple options, and you might find a data room that has all the built-in features you need. However, when you are comparing virtual data rooms, consider the following elements:
- User intuitiveness
- Ease of use
- Pricing plans
- Customer support service
- Customer reviews
Customer reviews are a great free source to assess the reputation and effectiveness of data room vendors. Unfortunately, customer reviews can be purchased (fake reviews); however, following review websites are trusted globally:
Even after doing your research, never hesitate to request a free trial. The good thing is that the data room providers happily agree to offer demos or free trials. Use the opportunity to the fullest and see if the software can assist you in what you want to achieve. Check out their features, customer support, ease of use, etc.
A reckless investment not only wastes your money but also adversely affects your business in many ways. The perfect virtual data room is the one that can help you achieve what you intend to accomplish with it. Following the tips mentioned above can help you find the right solution for your business.