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50+ questions to help you make a due diligence questionnaire

due diligence questionnaire
By Drazen Vujovic. Reviewed by: James Rose. Last Updated July 5, 2024

Due diligence is a time-consuming task, but it’s critical to the success of your next business venture. Most teams can’t complete this process without placing a significant strain on resources, but is there a way out of it?

Frankly speaking, there are no shortcuts — you have to dig deep to understand different aspects of the coming transaction. However, having a standardized due diligence questionnaire will help you streamline the process and make it at least slightly more efficient.

In this post, we’ll show you:

  • The basics of due diligence
  • How to improve this process
  • Sample questions to include in your questionnaire template
  • Some of the best examples of due diligence questionnaires

Let’s dive in!

Note: Just looking for the questionnaire? Go straight to our list of due diligence questions.

What is the due diligence process? 

The due diligence process is a systematic investigation of a business conducted before entering into a transaction or partnership. Most companies do it using a well-structured due diligence questionnaire (commonly referred to as DDQ).

The purpose of this process is to help you make informed decisions by evaluating the risks, opportunities, and overall viability of the endeavor. Due diligence isn’t simple though — we are talking about a multifaceted process that focuses on one or more of these aspects:

  • Financial due diligence: It involves analyzing the overall financial health (financial statements, cash flows, liabilities, etc).
  • Legal due diligence: This type of due diligence examines the legal aspects of a given entity (contracts, litigation history, regulatory compliance, intellectual property rights, and similar).
  • Operational due diligence: Another option is to explore the efficiency of the target's operations (supply chain, production processes, technology systems, KPIs, etc).
  • Commercial due diligence: This one investigates the market and competitive landscape (customer base, marketing strategies, growth potential, and so on).
  • Strategic due diligence: The due diligence process can also focus on alignment with the acquirer's strategic goals to learn how the target entity fits into the broader business strategy.
  • Human Resources due diligence: Vendor due diligence often stretches to the HR department to analyze a given company’s workforce (employee contracts, benefits, potential legal issues, etc).
  • ESG due diligence: The process sometimes covers environmental, social, and governance-related issues. 
  • IT due diligence: It’s not unusual to review the targeted company’s information technology infrastructure (software systems, cybersecurity measures, data management, etc).

Create a due diligence questionnaire template with Content Snare

Our platform helps businesses collect information, content, and files from potential partners. Use it to build a questionnaire template that fits the requirements of your business.

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How to improve your due diligence process?

die diligence questionnaire

If you already established a due diligence workflow but think it needs some polishing, start by redefining your key focus areas. For example, there’s no need to make a long list of IT or HR-related questions if you only want to check the financial records of the target company.

In case you need an all-encompassing template, it’s necessary to establish collaboration among different teams: financial, legal, operational, and similar. Experts from different departments must work together to come up with a comprehensive list of questions, but they should also periodically update your due diligence checklist to stay aligned with regulatory standards.

We encourage you to foster open communication with the target entity. That way, you are more likely to obtain relevant information and address any ambiguities. Most importantly, use modern technologies to streamline data collection and avoid information-gathering bottlenecks. Specialized document collection software will make this process as frictionless as possible.

Create a due diligence questionnaire template with Content Snare

Our tool helps businesses collect information and documents from potential partners. Use it to build a questionnaire template that fits the requirements of your business.

Start your trial here

50+ questions for your due diligence questionnaire template

due diligence questionnaires

Due diligence is often a huge undertaking that requires a lot more questions than a generic template, so we intentionally keep our form short. The questions you’ll see below serve as a starting point for further customization, so feel free to tailor them based on the specific nature and industry of the company undergoing due diligence.

Basic information

1. Full legal name of the company

2. Address

3. Website

4. Who is the primary contact person?

5. Contact person’s email

6. Contact person’s phone number

7. What is the organizational structure of the company?

8. Are there any outstanding or potential litigation matters involving the company? 

If yes, please specify. 

9. Provide information on the company's ownership structure and shareholders.

10. Were there any significant changes in ownership or management over the past five years?

If yes, please specify.

Financial due diligence

11. What is the current financial performance of the company?

Please specify revenue, EBITDA, net profit margins, and other relevant details.

12. Provide the latest audited financial statements.

These should include balance sheets, income statements, and cash flow statements.

13. What is the company's debt structure?

Please specify details such as outstanding loans, bonds, and other financial obligations.

14. Have there been any significant fluctuations in financial performance over the past three years?

If yes, please specify. 

15. Provide information on any contingent liabilities or off-balance-sheet commitments.

16. What is the company's capital expenditure plan for the next three years?

Legal due diligence

17. Are there any ongoing or pending legal disputes, investigations, or regulatory actions against the company?

If yes, please specify.

18. Provide details on intellectual property rights owned by the company.

This includes patents, trademarks, and copyrights.

19. Are there any material contracts or agreements that could impact the business?

If yes, please specify.

20. Are there any outstanding or potential labor and employment issues?

If yes, please specify. 

21. Provide information on any product liability claims or recalls in the past five years.

22. Are there any restrictions on the transferability of shares or assets?

If yes, please specify. 

Operational due diligence

23. Provide an overview of the company's supply chain.

This includes key suppliers and any concentration risks.

24. Describe the existing technology infrastructure and key operational facilities.

25. What measures are in place to ensure the quality of the company's products or services?

26. Does the company rely on automation technologies?

If yes, please specify. 

27. Describe the company's approach to risk management and business continuity planning.

28. How does the company monitor and assess the performance of its suppliers and vendors?

Commercial due diligence

29. Provide information on the company's customer base.

30. What is the pricing strategy of the company's products or services?

31. How does the company approach new product development and innovation?

32. Provide details on any exclusive distribution or partnership agreements in place.

33. What is the customer satisfaction and feedback mechanism in place?

34. Describe any market research or analysis conducted by the company in the last two years.

Strategic due diligence

35. What is the company's long-term strategic plan?

36. Provide information on recent mergers, acquisitions, or divestitures by the company.

37. What are the main drivers and risks associated with the company's strategic objectives?

38. Are there any significant macroeconomic or industry trends that may impact the company's strategy?

If yes, please specify.

HR due diligence

39. Provide an overview of the company's workforce.

This should include employee demographics and turnover rates.

40. Describe the compensation and benefits structure for employees at different levels.

41. How does the company address diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace?

42. Provide details on the company's training and development programs for employees.

43. What is the approach to performance management and employee evaluations?

44. Describe any employee-related liabilities, such as pending lawsuits or disputes.

IT due diligence

45. Provide an overview of the company's IT infrastructure.

46. What cybersecurity measures are in place to protect against cyber threats?

47. Describe the company's data management and privacy policies.

48. Are there any outstanding or potential cybersecurity incidents or data breaches?

If yes, please specify.

49. Provide details on any IT-related contracts, licenses, or agreements.

50. How does the company stay compliant with data protection laws and regulations?

51. Describe the approach to software development, testing, and maintenance.

ESG due diligence

52. Describe the company's commitment to environmental sustainability and any associated certifications.

53. Provide information on the company's energy consumption and carbon footprint.

54. How does the company manage waste and other environmental impacts of its operations?

55. Describe the company's social responsibility initiatives.

This includes community engagement and employee well-being.

56. Provide details on the company's diversity, equity, and inclusion practices.

57. Are there any outstanding or potential environmental or social liabilities?

If yes, please specify.

5 examples of high-quality due diligence questionnaires

It’s easy to find dozens of solid due diligence questionnaires online, but we did the homework on your behalf to discover the best examples. These questionnaires could serve as a great starting point for making your own template:

  • The Due Diligence Questionnaire by the Institutional Limited Partners Association is a standardized template with questions most investors will ask private equity LPs.
  • FindLaw built a Due Diligence Checklist for investors who’d like to investigate a company that plans on going public. 

Customize a due diligence questionnaire with Content Snare

Content Snare due diligence questionnaire

Your due diligence questionnaire should be unique for two reasons. Firstly, it must suit the nature of your business. Secondly, it is supposed to adapt to the peculiarities of your project and your prospective partner. That’s why it’s best to use a professional platform to create a customized questionnaire.

Content Snare is one of the finest tools in this field because it’s made for long-form information and document requests. It’s not like all those generic online form builders, but rather a feature-packed system that perfectly fulfills the expectations of B2B companies.

For one, Content Snare helps you gather the right information and files by adding instructions to each field or question:

due diligence questionnaire Content Snare

Our platform automatically saves progress, which is a genuine relief for clients who have to fill out a long due diligence questionnaire — they can pick up where they left any time. In case your clients don’t understand something, they can write a comment to ask for your clarification. We are proud of all Content Snare features, but let’s just add a few honorable mentions:

  • Automated reminders will keep your request top of mind — no constant nagging
  • Field approvals/rejections keep all the work inside Content Snare
  • Our drag-and-drop builder makes questionnaire design as simple as it gets
  • Multiple security layers lead to a secure due diligence process
  • Create templates to save time by reusing work

These and many other features make Content Snare a superior tool for creating due diligence questionnaires. We encourage you to give it a try — you can test Content Snare for free without providing credit card details. 

Create a tailored due diligence questionnaire template with Content Snare

Our tool helps businesses collect information and documents from potential partners. Use it to build a questionnaire template that fits the requirements of your business.

Start your 14-day trial here

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Drazen Vujovic

Dražen Vujović is a journalist and content writer. More importantly, he is a father of two and a long-distance runner.

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