Virtual Data Rooms for Board CommunicationsAuthor: Matt Hattam
The market for virtual data rooms (VDRs) has grown exponentially over the last few years. Made possible by advancements in cloud computing, they are an online repository of data that offer high levels of security and many other useful features. While it’s been widely thought that they are most efficient when being used in mergers and acquisitions, and more specifically for due diligence, they have such a wide range of features that they can be adapted to any aspect of a business’s operations. If you have already integrated your business into a virtual data room, then why not take the next step and use it for your board communication? Here are some reasons why using a VDR for your board communications can be extremely useful.
Look good in front of your board:
Whether you have good or bad information to show to your board members, it’s always important to present it as professionally as possible. In order to achieve this, it is of paramount importance to have all of your relevant information well organised in one easily accessible place. When it comes time for your board to review your information and they see the effort you have put into keeping it organised, it will instill a greater level of confidence in your abilities, and they will therefore be more likely to be impressed with your progress. Sometimes appearances are everything.
Ensure the security of your data:
When you communicate with your board members, it’s likely that you will be sharing information-sensitive documents. As such, maintaining the security of such documents is just as important as sharing them in the first place. VDRs are purpose-built around corporate data security, so by using one you will never have to worry data leakage. On top of this, your board will be able to rest easy knowing that they need not worry about the security of their confidential data. Less stress for your board members means less stress for you.
Efficient transferral of data:
Since your data room can be accessed at any time and from anywhere around the world, you will not have to worry about setting up meetings with your board in order to provide them with information. They will be able to view your company’s statements and other financials from wherever they are. Furthermore, should you have your data well organised by making use of the provided tools, your data room will be very easy to navigate. This means that decisions can be made in a much more efficient manner than before, leading to an overall shorter amount of time being allocated to board communications. Aside from this, you will also be able to give them access to your data room throughout the year instead of only providing the necessary information in the days leading up to your meetings with them. This means that they can be more prepared and better informed about the operations of their company.
Whether you’re dealing with clients or your board members, you don’t always want to give them complete access to all of your information. Sometimes, for various valid reasons, you might choose to withhold certain documents from them. If you do choose to do so, VDRs offer the perfect tools to allow you to do this. For each individual user or even for certain groups of users, you can set different access permission levels. These levels include view-only, downloading rights, printing rights, and various other features. On top of this, you can set watermarks with the user’s details or enable a “fence view” mode to further prevent data leakage. You have complete control over how your data is seen and used.
Obtain seamless feedback:
VDRs offer the ability to provide feedback on documents via FAQ and live Q&A features within the data room itself. This is the perfect platform on which your board can provide notes on all of the information that they have reviewed, and is extremely simple and intuitive to use. This can further reduce meeting times, and can be vital to the running of your business, as advice from board members must often be taken seriously. Furthermore, VDRs keep a detailed audit trail of who has viewed what information in the data room, so should you find that some board members have not yet viewed the necessary information before a board meeting, you can remind them to do so in time.