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How to Setup a Virtual Data Room in 4 Easy Steps

Virtual Data Room How To Guide

Data room users tend to be busy people. They need their virtual data room to be straightforward, innovative, and easy to manage. 

Luckily, data rooms typically don’t take long to open. No matter which provider you use, you will need to follow these simple steps in order for your virtual data room to be active.

- Prepare information you want to store in a data room.

- Follow these four simple steps to get your data room up and running in no time:

  • Select a VDR provider
  • Create groups and add new users
  • Set permissions
  • Add documents and files

1. Select a Virtual Data Room Provider

Before you can start document storage or due diligence, you need to pick a virtual data room provider. Due to the many providers out there, it’s important to do research on the pros and cons of each. You can use virtual data room vendor review sites and VDR comparison charts to educate yourself on the options and see which one best meets your team’s needs.

Once you select your virtual data room provider, you will need to set up your room and invite users.

Depending on the provider, once you choose them, you can immediately contact customer support to receive help and training. 

For example, with DealRoom, our customer support can help administrators have their room up and running within a few minutes.

virtual data room sign-up

2. Create Groups and Add New Users

Creating groups and adding new users to a virtual data room is simple. In this article, we will cover how to create groups, add new users, set permissions, upload documents, and create folders with our virtual data room, DealRoom.

With DealRoom, the “Groups” tab is where administrators can set file, requests, and other permissions. Administrators can also view the secific members in each group. Users that are not admins only see the members of the groups that they have access to.

To add new users, all you have to do is type in their email address. The user will receive an email invite and add in all their own information. To add a new group, simply hit the “+” next to “Groups” and type in the group name. You can also copy, rename, and delete groups.

how to set up virtual data room groups

3. Set Permissions 

All permissions for the room are located within the “Groups” tab. Common permissions include file, requests, admin, membership, group, and more. Note that all file permissions are set on a group level.

For file permissions, there are four options to choose from including view, download, download original, and edit:

  • View - users can only view files with a watermark
  • Download - users can download and print watermarked files
  • Download Original - users can view, download, and print original unwatermarked files
  • Edit - users can move, upload, overwrite, delete, and rename files and folders, as well as edit the index
VDR file permissions

Requests permissions are where administrators can turn on and off different request settings. For example, this is where they can decide if public comments need to be approved before being visible and which requests lists groups can view.

VDR request permissions

As soon as you upload files, the file permissions tab pops open. This is where you chose from view, download, download original, and edit. File permissions can be adjusted at any time.

virtual data room upload file permissions

In addition to file and request permissions, administrators can also set permissions for group members, parent folders, and more. They can give a specific group administrator access, hide members from each other, allow regular users to invite new users, and more.

additional VDR permissions

4. Add Documents and Files

The document tab's content empowers teams to transform, retrieve, and classify documents and folders all within one platform. Benefit from various virtual data room features such as bulk upload, built-in document view, smart search, drag-and-drop, and more. The convenient built-in Excel and document viewer gives users file visibility, without ever having to leave the platform.

To upload new documents and files, users head over to the “Documents” tab. Users can then bulk upload documents using drag and drop, and the system will maintain the file & folder structure inside the VDR when uploading. DealRoom also has free due diligence and other checklist templates available online for download that can be imported into your room. 

VDR upload files

DealRoom also has free due diligence and other checklist templates available online for download that can be imported into your room.

These templates will automatically populate folder structure and requests within the room.

import a VDR template

Even though many VDR platforms have the same set up format, not every provider offers the same extra features, customer service options, and pricing.

Useful Links

How to Find the Right Virtual Data Room That Meets All Your Security Needs

Why M&A Deals Need Virtual Data Rooms

How to Choose The Right Data Room For Investment Banking

What Causes Deal Fever? What Raises the Risk?

There are several symptoms that can lead to the disease of deal fever. 

One such symptom of deal fever is getting carried away in the heat of the deal. There is a lot of time and effort spent just exploring a potential deal, let along the negotiations involved. Sometimes people spend so much time and effort on exploring and negotiating the deal that they feel is must get done at all costs, while failing to take a birds-eye view in determining if the deal is really the best thing for the company.

Another symptom indicating the presence of deal fever and one that raises the risk of catching it is when certain executives become more excited about the deal and emotionally involved in the outcome than other members of the group. This can lead to inflating the deal’s potential strengths instead of also focusing on potential pitfalls. In a competitive situation, sometimes certain people want to do the deal much more than others for a variety of reasons. 

Many M&A teams also use M&A software to help them source new deals. Just because a software is telling you a deal is a good idea, that doesn't mean you don't have to do the proper research.

How to Prevent Deal Fever

Great news! There are a number of proven ways to prevent deal fever and keep your company disease-free. Here are some tips to stay deal fever-free:

  • Perform More Research Than You Need To. You can never perform too much research on a potential deal, so we recommend doing even more than you think you need to.  
  • Seek The Opinion Of Experienced Deal Makers. Get another opinion from someone you trust that has embarked on similar deals. What do they think of the deal? Seeking another opinion that can evaluate your potential deal without the emotional involvement will help you ensure the deal is truly one you want to pursue!
  • Know All Of The Potential Risks. Thoroughly evaluating the deal’s potential risks, and involving your team in the process, will help you avoid deal fever. Don’t lose sight of your basic financial calculations! Involving others in the process is essential, as you want to make sure nothing is overlooked and you can remain deal fever-free. 

Resist deal fever by not overlooking the negatives that you may not want to see! If you have been the primary person working on the deal, make sure you involve others so they can help assure that you are seeing everything clearly. There should never be one person working on deal flow tracking. Likewise, don’t let personal pressures to get the deal done get in the way of looking at everything objectively. Sometimes, not doing the deal may be in the best interests of the company.

How to Tell When You Have Deal Fever

Do you have a high degree of risk tolerance? Do you have a burning desire to get the deal done, yet something just doesn’t feel right about it but you’re not sure what? If so, you may be catching a slight bout of deal fever.

Having the above feelings isn’t just exclusive to individuals, either. Many companies surveyed believe that their M&A function of getting the deal done is more important than what follows. If you’re in the M&A department, and you’re not performing M&A’s, something must be wrong, right? No, not necessarily. Inherently good deals are difficult to come by and you may have to pass on many of them before you find the right fit.

If deals contain personal agendas or emotions, or your company provides more incentives and encouragement to do the deals rather than not, than these are signs that your company may have deal fever. Recognize the signs so you can avoid deal fever and ensure you are making deals that have the highest chances of future success for your company.

Deal Fever

Treatment, Care & Medications For Deal Fever

Below are some treatment, care and medications for this contagious disease known as deal fever:

  • Treatment Option 1. Ensure your deal team is incentivized for long term success, and not just for completion of the deal.
  • Treatment Option 2. Have objective, experienced observers review the deal specs, including all of the potential negatives of doing the deal.  This way you can help ensure you’re not overlooking potential pitfalls.
  • Treatment Option 3. Let post-close executives have direct input into whether or not the deal goes through
  • Medications For Deal Fever. Create clear action steps that are to be taken when considering all potential deals. Create a set of red flags, or things to be looked at more closely when they occur. Finally, a healthy dose of objective observation by people not directly involved in the process will both help prevent and cure this debilitating disease!

A very important aspect in our guide on deal fever is to cultivate a business culture in which you have both risk tolerant and risk averse individuals on the team, with both groups having equal say. When both groups sign off on a potential deal, and it is also reviewed by an objective observer, you know you might have a winner!

sign up for deal management software

Don’t Underestimate the Power of Diet, Exercise & Rest

One of the most important ways to prevent deal fever that is often overlooked is to ensure you have a good diet, and are getting enough exercise and rest. Doing so will keep your mind and body in tip top shape, and will help alleviate some of the pressures incurred from pursuing and evaluating a potential deal. 

M&A deals are complex transactions that often go at a very fast pace and can also be emotionally charged, so ensuring you’re eating well, exercising and getting enough rest can help counteract the pressures of working on the deal.

The Takeaway

Many M&A management can sometimes lack a truly accountable leader to oversee the process. Having a great leader, coupled with the goal of long term success instead of short term, are the highlights of the best things to do to not get infected with this crippling disease. Set the criteria for success and focus on that more than focusing on doing the deal just to get it over with. Make sure your team is incentivized on long term goals and are not acting out of the fear of “what if we don’t get this deal done.”

If you and your team are currently managing M&A transactions, check out DealRoom's M&A virtual data room and project management software. DealRoom's platform also includes pipeline and integration management, which helps teams organize deals for their entire lifecycle.

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