Today, the virtual data room is the main link that helps companies achieve success in various business operations like fundraising, regulatory requirements, mergers, and acquisitions or litigation. At first, it may seem like all VDRs have the same goals and principles, but that’s not true. They differ in many ways and in this article we will tell you which criteria to use to compare VDR providers.
Different types of providers
The VDR market is filled with different brands and offerings, which can be divided into three main categories: legacy, modern and universal. The last kind of data room isn’t essentially one; it just provides some of the features that are most commonly found in VDRs. Let’s take a look at these three types in more detail:
- Elderly providers: these are providers that predate the advent of the Internet and the virtual data room phenomenon. These providers have modernized their operations and started offering data room services, even though they were engaged in very different activities in the past. The main advantage of such companies is that they already have experience, their brand is easily recognized and they have a good reputation, and even their inflated prices are justified. The disadvantage of such companies is usually their outdated interface, which is too cluttered with unnecessary functions;
- Modern providers: these are representatives of the new generation of VDRs, which began their activities after the year 2000. Providers try to provide only the most useful and effective tools at a favorable price and with a minimum security risk. Modern providers build their products from the ground up, so they use advanced technologies like artificial intelligence and other tools to simplify document and user management. These types of providers would be a great option for small and medium-sized businesses, or investment banks;
- Unique providers: these are common document-sharing spaces. Bright representatives of such programs are Dropbox or Google Disk. This type of program is used by many users around the world because of its low price and easy setup. However, for storing and sharing corporate documents, such a tool will not suit in any way, because its security features do not meet international security requirements. Neither will they facilitate your transactions and represent only a fraction of the features that VDRs can provide.
Criteria for comparing VDR vendors
When selecting a vendor, you should look at the following tool metrics:
Security is a major criterion for any data room. When you are comparing vendors, pay attention to the security certifications the company provides. If ISO / IEC 27001: 2013, GDPR, or SOC2 are among them, then these vendors are worthy of your attention. The VDR should also provide data encryption and sophisticated permission settings.
Permissions allow you to control access to documents and guarantee protection against data leaks and help with various transactions. Make sure the provider has individual and group permissions for document interaction, real-time reporting and auditing, and a document viewing restriction feature.
- Support Service
The way the help desk works is different for every provider. Obviously, you want advice on your project or help from qualified people. Keep track of how long it takes for support staff to contact you when they are available, and how they can be reached.
Pricing policies also vary from vendor to vendor, and you need to choose one that is beneficial for your type of business. VDRs can charge per page, per user, per gigabytes of storage, or have a flat rate.