Due diligence is a way for investors, partners, or entrepreneurs to make sure that everything that deals with a company is in order. It is a way to ensure that the company is making the profits that it says it is making and that everything that the management says is occurring actually is occurring. Some people believe that due diligence is devious, while others do not. You may have different roles depending on what part of the process you are involved in.
As the Investigator
If you are an investor or partner, you may want to make sure that everything is going the way it is supposed to be going before you choose to sink your money into a project. This is a good idea. There are a number of companies that are not real and exist only on paper for the sole purpose of stealing money from investors. Instead of believing something that an investor says, check it out for yourself.
The first step is to name someone as the coordinator. This person will be responsible for making sure that everyone is doing what they need to do. They will get together all of the materials and will put everything in order so that you can read it and understand it. It is also important to make sure that you have a team of people working under the coordinator who are qualified. For instance, you may want to have people who are qualified to analyze information, such as financial gurus and managers who have a great deal of experience. You will also need to decide if you want to do everything in the open or quietly. There are pros and cons to both, and it is up to you and your team to decide which is the best option for you.
If you are the owner of a company who is undergoing due diligence, it is vital that you make your employees comfortable. Explain to them what is going on (if you know) and encourage them to speak openly and honestly with any investigators who ask to speak with them. They are often the ones who will be the most worried about the process and it is important to keep them in the loop as much as possible.
Also, make sure that all of your information is available for anyone who is on the team of investigators. Getting together your financial information can be a great way to see where your company is at and to learn more about your company as well! Make sure you stay calm and that you work with the investigators instead of trying to hide things from them. If you are unaware of any investigation being done formally, even if you simply suspect, continue your day to day routine. As long as you and your staff are cooperative, the process should go smoothly on your end and should help out both sides.