Conducting Operational Due Diligence in a Remote World
While the world is continuing its recovery from the pandemic, the effects of COVID-19 will linger for years to come. For one, remote work is not going away anytime soon, and that’s a fact investors, consultants, and fund managers must adapt to. Since early 2020, operational due diligence teams have been working in a remote world, which often means conducting operational due diligence from afar. Here’s an overview of the impact this has had, as well as strategies for remote operational due diligence.
What Has Changed
Barriers to in-person visits have made it more difficult to get the in-person grasp those visits used to provide. When operational due diligence teams are unable to conduct onsite meetings with managers, it’s harder to get a lay of the land and feel of the operations. Dimensions such as culture, systems and staff competencies are often measured in operational due diligence risk, usually gauged during onsite visits. Collaboration with peers is now one of the biggest challenges to come out of the pandemic. Be prepared for this new reality and prepare yourself for new ways to be able to confront the new situation we’re all living in.
Solutions for a Remote World
Keeping all document attachments in one place is essential to staying organized through remote work. It is a solution that can be used to amplify your current process. The ability to retrieve and share information in the cloud, in real-time, creates the opportunity for collaboration no matter where your due diligence team is located. For example, you can maintain all documents attached to investor DDQs in a centralized repository and update them as needed. With a centralized data hub, even when remote, locating every aspect needed is simple.
The right technology should let you manage all your funds and strategies data in a single place. It should also allow you to:
- Benefit from a unified, 360 degree view of investment operations, with the ability to drill into the manager, fund or strategy level.
- Centralize all documents in a single library, and leverage powerful search capabilities within your documents and library.
- Collaborate more efficiently internally through adding comments and tagging users.
- Track what happened over time with a detailed audit trail for all communication.
- Easily import and export data.
The Importance of Automation
Automation is perhaps one of the most important changes that can be made when approaching remote ODD. Automation of menial tasks like data collection, response tracking to DDQs, and rating can save time, freeing employees up to focus on qualitative aspects instead.
The changes resulting from the pandemic will affect the world of operational due diligence for the foreseeable future. Be prepared to continue along this route. CENTRL’s ODD360 is a multi-party operational due diligence platform used by investors and managers to provide a superior Operational Due Diligence process experience. ODD360 provides a highly intuitive user experience, deep automation, and analytics. Learn more about ODD360 here.