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Questions and Answers (Q&A)

Overview

Q&A is an integral part of a Virtual Data Room (VDR). It helps you manage, track, and distribute questions and answers between the people in your project.

By the end of this course you'll be able to:

  • Understand how Q&A is used for a variety of use-cases
  • Set up Q&A for your project
  • Distinguish between Q&A settings for different project types
  • Track the flow of questions and answers in your project
  • Understand the role of a coordinator / approver for both the question and answer side

How Q&A works with your project

Q&A is a module within your VDR project that - when enabled - allows the users of your project to ask questions and receive answers in an organized way.

A project’s administrator may set up Q&A to behave differently, depending on the project’s use-case. Here are some Q&A settings that change its behaviour:

  • In the case of a bidding process, should questions be submitted anonymously to maintain fairness?
  • Should all answers pass through a legal team before being answered?
  • Is there a deadline for asking questions? Do you require a report showing that no questions were asked after the deadline?

Before You Begin - Things To Consider

Have you set up your Groups & Users in the dataroom?

In order to use Q&A a user must first have access to your project. Meaning, a user must be added to a group in your project before being added to Q&A. See this article on adding users to your project.

Will there be a team member who will need to review questions or answers before they are submitted?

Both the question and answer groups can have an optional “gatekeeper”, or "approver". The gatekeeper controls the flow of questions and answers.

If a gatekeeper role is present on the question side, then all questions must pass through the gatekeeper.

Similarly, if the gatekeeper role is present on the answer side, then all answers must pass through the gatekeeper first before being handed back to the question group.

On the question side, the gatekeeper is known as a “Question Coordinator”.
On the answer side, the gatekeeper is known as an “Approver”.

Setting Up Q&A

Choosing an initial workflow

Firmex recommends using "M&A w/ Approver" as the default workflow if you are unsure if you need the additional approval step.

Firmex has set up three default Q&A workflows in order to save you time when setting up Q&A. These defaults change some of the settings and terminology in Q&A. Choose one of these defaults to get started:

  • M&A
    Select this template for managing questions and answers for M&A due diligence, with one or more potential buyer groups, and when answers do not require a separate approval step.
  • M&A w/ Approver
    Select this template for managing questions and answers for M&A due diligence, with one or more potential buyer groups, and with answers requiring a separate approval step.
  • RFP/Procurement
    Select this template for managing an RFP/RFI or procurement process, including the sharing of documents and managing questions from one or more potential vendors. The default language is changed from “buyer” to “vendor”. By default, all submitted answers are shared to all question groups.

Step 1 - Set Up Question Groups

In Step 1 of setting up Q&A you will assign users to buyer or vendor groups.

On the left side of the screen you see a list of users and companies that are currently in your project.

On the right side of the screen are your Q&A groups, which Firmex has labeled “Buyer 1” and “Buyer 2”, depending on the workflow you selected.

To add a user to a group, drag-and-drop them from the left side of the screen to the right side of the screen.

If questions must be reviewed by an approver/gatekeeper

Assign the gatekeeping team members to be the Question Coordinators, or QC. The QC will be the only user that can submit questions to the seller. Her role is to review questions, compose questions, remove duplicates, etc.
You may have multiple people as the QC.

If a QC is present, then Question Authors (QAs) may compose draft questions, but not submit them. The right pane explains these roles in more detail.

If any user in the group may submit questions without review

If everyone in a group is allowed to submit questions, place all users in one role and leave the other role empty.

Managing Question Groups

  • To switch a user’s role, drag-and-drop them to a different role or group.
  • To remove a user from a group, click the X button next to the user you want to remove.
  • To change a group’s name, click the Edit button next to your group name.
  • To add additional groups, click the Add Group button.

Once your Buyer groups are set up, go on to Step 2.

Step 2 - Set Up Answer Group

In Step 2 you will assign users to the Answer group. It works the same way as assigning users to the Question group.

The only required role is Answer Coordinator. Experts and Approvers are optional roles.

Drag-and-drop users to their roles. There are three roles to choose from:

  • The Answer Coordinator, or AC, is the gatekeeper for all questions. All questions come through the AC, and all questions leave through the AC. The AC is the deal coordinator.
  • Experts can propose answers, but not submit answers back to the question groups. An expert can see all submitted questions and answers in progress. An AC can assign questions to an expert.
  • An Approver must approve all answers before they are submitted back to the question group. If an Approver is present, the workflow is as follows: A question comes in to the AC. The AC can either answer the question themselves or pass it to an Expert. The AC or Expert then pass the answer to the Approver for approval. Once approved, the question then gets published back to the Question Groups.

Step 3 - Categories, Instructions, and Options

In Step 3, set up your Q&A Options. You may change these options at any time during your project by returning to this step.

Question Categories

Firmex takes all of your existing directories and turns them to Categories . Offline directories and directories that certain users cannot see may also be made into categories.

When the question group submits a question, they may assign a category to the question. Firmex suggests categories based on your directory structure. You may manually add or remove categories. A buyer may choose from one of these categories when asking a question - they cannot add their own category.

Question Instructions

You may manually enter instructions that are displayed every time a buyer asks a question. By default the instructions are:

(Please submit a maximum of 5 High Priority questions a day)

Note that this is a text only field that cannot control any Q&A parameter.

Options

  • Require Answer Coordinator to manually submit anwer to Question group after approval
    If this box is checked, after an Approver approves an answer, the Approved Answer is passed back to the Answer Coordinator, which then has to manually publish the approved answer.
    If the checkbox is unchecked, the approved answer is published directly to the Question Group. There is no need to pass through the Answer Coordinator.
  • By default, share all answers with all Question groups
    By checking this checkbox, by default your answer will be sent to all the question groups. You will have to override this option on a question-by-question basis in order to send an answer just to the group that asked the question.
  • Hide Question Submitter details from Answer Coordinator
    If this box is checked, the question submitter names and company details will be hidden from the Answer Group. If this box is unchecked, the question submitter details will be shown to the Answer Group.

Step 4 - Email Settings and Activating Q&A

Status

By default, each Question group is Inactive, meaning they will not see the Q&A tab, they will not be able to ask questions or receive answers, and they will not receive Q&A emails.

To activate a group, that is, to start Q&A, change each group’s status to Active

Read Only, so that the group is able to view existing answers, receive answers to outstanding questions, but not ask any new questions. You may want to set a group’s status to Read Only once the Q&A session is complete.
Set a group to Inactive when they are no longer a part of the Q&A process.

Emails

When there is new Q&A activity, how frequently should the members of a Q&A group be notified? Task emails are immediate email notifications delivered to users to notify them of a new task for them or that action has been taken on a question and help keep up momentum in the conversation. Email Digests are summaries of activity in Q&A relevant to the group or role of users. By default, Firmex will send out digests every hour whenever there is new Q&A activity. You can change that frequency to or task and email digests by group or turn them off altogether.

When you are ready to proceed, click the Submit button. Q&A is now set up.

The Question Group - Asking Questions

There are several ways of asking questions.

Ask a single question

From the Q&A tab, click the Add button.

Fill in the question title, give more detail if required, and link to a document or folder if applicable. Assign the question to a category, give it a priority, and then either save the question as a Draft if you're a Question Author, or Submit the question if you are a Question Coordinator.

If there is no Question Coordinator present, a Question Author may submit a question to the answer group directly.

Once submitted, the question cannot be revoked and is handed to the answer side.

Another way to ask a question is through the Documents window. Right click a document or folder and select “Add Question”. The same question screen as above appears, linking to the selected folder or document.

Import a list of questions

The last way of submitting questions is through an Excel spreadsheet. A question group can fill in all of their questions in the Excel spreadsheet, and then import that spreadsheet into Firmex. This works well for groups that have a lot of questions, as well as for groups that don’t have a Firmex account for everyone that wants to ask a question. The spreadsheet Import is accessible through the Q&A tab by clicking the Import button. Questions may be imported on behalf of a question group by the Answer Coordinator.

Filter questions

Your questions and answers, once asked and answered, will appear in the center of the screen in the Q&A tab.

On the left there are presets that allow you to see any Draft Questions awaiting your Approval, Outstanding Questions which are questions that have not yet been answered, and Answers.
You may define your own filters by using the drop-downs.
To see every question and answer, click “Reset Filters”.

Some questions will change colour depending on the amount of time they have been opened. Questions appear in black text when they have been open for less than 3 days. They will turn orange when they have been open for 3 to 4 days. They will appear in red text if they have been open for more than 4 days. Questions may also display the text “Public” if the Answer Group has decided to share the answer publicly.

The Answer Group - Answering Questions

Every question that has been asked is routed to the Answer Coordinator(s) (ACs).

There are a few ways of using the Q&A screen - as a tool to answer questions, to assign questions to experts, and as a reporting tool to review what questions have been asked and answered.

Filter questions

  • Click the New Questions filter on the left to see the questions requiring your immediate attention. Use the column headings to filter the questions by priority, date, or the question group that asked the question.
  • The In Progress filter shows you questions that are currently being attended to.
  • The To Approve/Submit filter shows questions that have been answered by experts, and are waiting for your review to be submitted.
  • If the Approver role is present, the To Approve filter will contain answers that need to be approved by the Approver.
  • To see all of the questions and answers, in all statuses and priorities, click Reset Filters.

Answer a question

To start answering questions, or to pass them along to an expert, click the Question title.

This is the Answer screen. Let’s break it down to understand it.

At the top is the question being asked. The right pane contains further information about the question - who asked the question, when the question was submitted, its priority, etc. If your project allows anonymous questions, the author’s name will be hidden.
You may re-prioritize and re-categorize a question based on your own workflow.

Activity surrounding the question appears at the bottom, in the Activity Feed. Activity for Assigning Question, Drafting Answers and Approving Answers is only shown to the Answer Group and will never be shown to the Buyer Group. Activity will show the back and forth communication between the Answer Coordinator, Experts, and Approvers.

The AC has several options. If they know the answer to the question, they may type it in the answer pane. They may link to existing documents or folders from the Documents tab or choose to upload new documents, and then Submit the answer to the question group. Click the checkbox below the answer to submit the answers to all the question groups.

To pass the question to an expert, click the Assign button. Select or type the Expert’s name. The person to whom you assign the question will receive an immediate email notification, and the question will appear in their Q&A screen.

You may copy other individuals by including them in the CC fields, though no action is required on their part.

The “Expert” Role

Let’s quickly take a look at things from the perspective of an Expert.

When an expert logs in, they will see a filter titled “Assigned to Me” and “In Progress”. Assigned to Me are questions that have been directly assigned to the expert. They require the expert’s attention. The “In Progress” filter shows questions that are currently in progress - they are not assigned to the expert directly, but the expert can see them.

To answer a question as an expert, click the question title. The expert has the same options as the Answer Coordinator, except one difference - they can propose an answer to a question, but the answer will be returned to the Answer Coordinator - it will not be submitted to the question group until the Answer Coordinator reviews and submits it.

Once an expert has passed an answer back to the AC, the answer will appear in the AC’s Q&A tab as a “Proposed Answer”.

Passing a question back to the Question Group

To answer the question, click the Answer field. The QC may type in their own answer, or, they can quote the reply of the Expert by clicking Quote Reply. The QC may modify the reply, and then click Submit. This will be the last step before the reply is sent back to the question group.

If the answer is submitted publicly, identifying details of the original question group will be omitted.

Receiving Answers

Users from the question group receive an email notification when their question has been answered. The answer also appears in the Q&A tab.

Reopening a Question

A question that has already been answered can be reopened. This is typically done to ask for clarification or more details, while keeping a record of the original question.

To reopen a question, from the Q&A tab, select an Answer, and then click Reopen. The Activity Feed provides a timestamped history of your conversation to give you the complete context surrounding the original question.

Ending Q&A

To end Q&A, go to the Q&A Settings tab, and in Step 4, set each Buyer Group’s Status to Inactive or Read-only. Inactive will hide the Q&A tab and will stop all emails. Read-only will allow your question groups to read questions and receive answers to outstanding questions, but not to ask new questions.

Reports

The AC has access to the Q&A reports tab. The reports are laid out in the following way:

  • The first two reports show who is most interested in the deal, in other words, who is asking the questions.
  • The middle two reports show what the buyer groups are most interested in, or, what are users asking questions about.
  • The last two reports show how well the Q&A process is working. For example, are all questions being directed to just one expert?

Download this comprehensive Q&A Cheat Sheet for information on Roles, Question Flow, Question Visibility, Email Notifications, and more:
QA-Info-Sheet

Frequently Asked Questions

Firmex Q&A lets you easily manage, route and answer large volumes of questions relating to your deal using your existing Firmex interface.

Below you'll find the top Frequently Asked Questions related to Q&A:

Users

Q: How many question groups can I have?
A: As many as you need - there is no limit.

Q: Do I need to have a Question Coordinator and a Question Author in a Question Group, or can I just have one?
A: If you would like to have a funnel through which questions are asked, assign one person to be a Question Coordinator. That person can review all questions before they are submitted.

Questions & Answers

Q: How many questions can a group submit?
A: Question Groups can submit as many questions as they need.  there is no limit in Firmex, however, Project Administrators may want to set guidelines/instructions for questions submitters in the Q&A Settings > Options. For example, “Please submit no more than 5 high priority questions a day.”
If you have a lot of questions, consider importing them using the Excel template provided.

Q: Can an answer be revised once it's been submitted?
A: Yes. An Answer Coordinator may revise an answer that has been submitted. To do so, in the Q&A tab, find the submitted answer. Hover your mouse over the submitted answer, click the answer's pull-down menu and select Update Answer. Update the answer and click the Submit button. An email alert will be sent showing both the original answer and the updated answer. On the Question Group's side, in the Q&A tab, only the updated answer will be displayed. To the Answer Coordinator, in the Q&A tab, both the revised answer and the original question will be displayed (in the Activity area).

Q: Can a question that has been answered publicly be retracted?
A: A question that has been answered publicly may be retracted from the Question Group's Q&A tab. However, the email trail showing the original answer cannot be retracted. To retract a public answer, update the answer using the answer's pull-down menu. Re-submit the answer and un-check the "Submit Answer to all Question Groups" check-box. The answer will be removed from all Question Groups except the Question Group that originally submitted the question.

Q: How can I better manage questions that are being answered too slowly?
A: Questions that have been unanswered for more than X hours, the date submitted will appear in yellow, then orange, then red in your question list as it gets older.  Also you can sort questions by date submitted or by priority, then select a group of assigned questions and select “Send reminder” from the menu to gently nudge your experts along in finishing their answers.
You can also look at Q&A Reports > Assigned Questions and see which users are assigned the most number of questions - and feel free to reassign them to less busy experts.

Q: I am in the Question Group. How come there are duplicate Question numbers (e.g. two No. 1 questions).
A: An answer from another Question Group’s question was made public and it duplicated an existing question number.

Q: Can Question Groups ever see what happened in the Activity of a question?
A: No.  Question Groups only see the final answer.

Reopened Questions

Q: Can an answer be reopened once it’s been answered?
A: Yes. A question can be reopened by the Question Group once it’s been answered. This is typically used to clarify the context of the original question while preserving the original question. Both the Question and Answer Group will see the entire history of questions and answers.

Q: How can I tell if a question has been reopened?
A: The words “Reopened” will appear next to the subject of the original question, indicating to the Answer Group that the question has been reopened. The reopened question is routed in the same flow as the original question.

Q: Can a public answer be reopened?
A: No. Public questions and answers may not be reopened.

Q: Can a question be reopened multiple times?
A: Yes. A question may be reopened multiple times. Each submitted question may contain up to 2400 characters. 

Q. Who can reopen questions?
A: The Question Coordinator (or if there is no Question Coordinator, any Question Author) will have the option to “Reopen Question” if:

  • The questions answer is not public
  • The question has the status of Answer Submitted
  • The question body has at least 250 characters available

Q. How can I prevent users from reopening a question?
A: It is not possible to prevent users from reopening a question since the user could just as easily open a new question. In order to prevent Q&A users from responding to question the buyer group will need to be set to Inactive or Read-Only status.

Q. How will reopened questions work within the Q&A Reports?
A: Reopened questions will be reflected in the Answer in Progress and Most Active Group reports. When reopened they will be counted as Submitted Questions and continue under the existing flow.

Q. Can I see details about the Answer Side in the Activity Feed as a member of the Question Group?
A: No, names and roles of the Answer group users are not published in the Question Group’s activity feed. The only details provided with submitted questions are the state of the answer (Submitted) and the date/time the answer was submitted.

Misc.

Q: I am in a Question Group and I cannot see the Q&A tab.
A: Your Q&A group status is Inactive. Please contact the project administrator.

Q: I need to keep the identity of the question groups completely secret, even from my experts and approvers. What can I do?
A: By default, Q&A experts and approvers do not see the name or company of individuals in question groups (unless they are project administrators or managers and can see the Project user list).  To add an additional layer of security, use code names for each question group, and select the Q&A Settings > Options “Hide Question Submitter details from Answer Coordinator” option.

Categories

Q: Q&A has been set up for my project. I am adding a new directory to my project. Will the new directory show up as a Q&A Category?
A: If a directory is created after Q&A setup has occurred, it will not automatically appear as a selectable category when composing a question. The directory must be manually added through the Q&A Settings tab.

Reports

Q: Can I see which documents my users have asked questions about?
A: In the Q&A tab, click “Show/Hide Columns” and show the Document Reference column. The column displays documents and folders related to a question. You may sort and export the list.

Q: Can I track who is answering questions? How many outstanding questions are in someone's queue?
A: The Q&A Reports > Top Categories and Top Documents/Folders reports both show which documents, folders, and categories are of most interest for your project’s Question Groups.

Misc.

Q: How do I end Q&A? The Q&A period for my project is complete. How do I stop my Buyer Groups from asking questions?
A: End Q&A by setting the Buyer Groups’ status to Inactive or Read-Only. You can do so from the Q&A Settings Tab > Group Settings. A status of Inactive will hide the Q&A tab from a question group and stop all email correspondence. A status of Read-Only will stop a Question Group from asking new questions, but will display existing questions and allow outstanding questions to be answered.

Q: Can I tell whether a document has questions/answers about it?
A: In the Documents tab, the document will contain a speech bubble icon if there are questions or answers related to it.

Q: If a user doesn’t have access to a document that is referred to in a question or answer, can they still see the document?
A: No.  Document permissions are not changed by any actions in Q&A.  If a user does not have permission to view a document or folder, it appears to them in the Question as “Restricted” only.

Q: I need to keep the identity of the question groups completely secret, even from my experts and approvers. What can I do?
A: By default, Q&A experts and approvers do not see the name or company of individuals in question groups (unless they are project administrators or managers and can see the Project user list).  To add an additional layer of security, use code names for each question group, and select the Q&A Settings > Options “Hide Question Submitter details from Answer Coordinator” option.

Q: I am in a Question Group and I cannot see the Q&A tab.
A: Your Q&A group status is Inactive. Please contact the project administrator.

Q: Can I go through the Q&A set-up wizard again if I chose the wrong template the first time?
A: No, a Project Administrator or Manager can only use the set-up wizard once (if it was completed). However, all set-up options can be changed at any time. For example, if you decide that you need a separate approver after setting up Q&A, just go into Q&A settings and add an approver in the Answer Group page.

Q: I am in a Question Group and I cannot submit questions. I could before.
A: Your Q&A group status is Read-Only. You are able to read existing questions and you will receive answers to outstanding questions. You are not able to submit new questions.

Q: What happens if I have a potential bidder who doesn’t want to use a tool, even a great one like Firmex Q&A?
A: Have the bidder send their questions using the Excel Template provided, then an Answer Coordinator can import the questions on their behalf.  The Answer Group can use Firmex to draft answers, and get approvals like usual, then export the answers to Excel and send them back to the bidder contact.

Q: How many documents are shown in the Doc. Reference column? Does it show both documents and folders?
A: The document reference column displays either the first document or folder linked to a question.

Q: Who can turn on Q&A for my project?
A: Project Managers and Project Administrators may turn on Q&A for your project.

Questions & Answers

Q: Can I search through old questions?
A: Yes. To see a list of all Question and Answers, in the Q&A tab click the “Reset Filters” button.

Q: How many questions can a group submit?
A: Question Groups can submit as many questions as they need.  there is no limit in Firmex, however, Project Administrators may want to set guidelines/instructions for questions submitters in the Q&A Settings > Options. For example, “Please submit no more than 5 high priority questions a day.”
If you have a lot of questions, consider importing them using the Excel template provided.

Q: Can a Question Coordinator save a question as a Draft?
A: Question Coordinators cannot save questions as a Draft. Only a Question Author may save a question as a Draft.

Q: Is a Question Coordinator notified via a task email when a Question is drafted by a Question Author?
A: Yes, a task email is sent to the QC. The Draft will appear in the QC’s Digest Email, as well as in the Q&A tab under the Drafts preset.

Q: Is an Answer Coordinator notified via a task email when an Answer is drafted by an Expert?
A: No, a task email is not sent to the AC. The Draft will appear in the AC’s Digest Email, as well as in the Q&A tab under the Drafts preset.

Q: Why don’t I see an Approve or Reject option on a question with a proposed answer?
A: You do not have permission to do approvals.

Q: As an AC, how can I see all of the questions that have been asked?
A: In the Q&A tab, from the Status pull-down menu, place a checkmark next to “Draft Question”, “Submitted Question”, and “Assigned Question”, or press the “Reset Filters” button.

Q: As an AC, I know that there are draft questions posted by the question group, however, I cannot see them, even when I click the “Draft Question” filter.
A: The AC can only see draft questions created by other ACs. Only the QC can see draft questions posted by their Question Group.

Q: Can I search for a specific word in a question or answer?
A: Yes. You may search for a word in a question by using the Q&A tab’s Filter. First, in the Q&A tab, display all of the questions and answers by using the Status pull-down, or by clicking “Reset Filters”. Once all of the questions and answers are displayed, use the Filter Results menu at the top-right corner of the grid to filter the results.

Q: How many question groups can I have?
A: As many as you need - there is no limit.

Q: Can Question Groups ever see what happened in the Activity of a question?
A: No.  Question Groups only see the final answer.

Q: Can I reject a question if it’s been answered before?
A: QCs can choose not to submit a draft question if it is a duplicate or not appropriate.  ACs can submit an answer to a new question with a message like “This question is a duplicate of question 24.”

Q: Can I attach a new document to a question or an answer?
A: Yes. An existing document may be linked or a new document may be attached to an answer. The document may be displayed immediately, or it could be "hidden" until the answer is submitted.

Q: Can I withdraw a question?
A: Currently QCs cannot withdraw a question.  Please contact an AC and let them know which question you’d like to withdraw and they can archive it for you.

Q: What does “Export Filtered Results” actually export?
A: It will export results filtered by the quick filter(s) on the left filter pane and whatever keyphrase is in the Filter Results text bar.

Q: When I make an Answer public, do all users see the Question that was asked?
A: Yes. However, the name and company of the user who asked the question originally will be omitted.

Q: Can an Approver edit an answer?
A: The Approver cannot edit an answer. They can only approve or reject it. If rejected, the answer will be sent back to the AC, who can then modify it.

Q: I am in the Question Group. How come there are duplicate Question numbers (e.g. two No. 1 questions).
A: An answer from another Question Group’s question was made public and it duplicated an existing question number.

Q: I’m an AC. How come the questions are numbered A-1, A-2, B-4, B-5, C-5, etc.?
A: Each Question Group sees their own numbering attached to a question. That is, Group A’s first question will be Question 1. Group B’s first question will also be question 1, etc.
When the questions are submitted to the Answer Group, the Answer Group needs to differentiate between each group’s Question 1. Hence, Firmex affixes the letters A, B, C, etc. to the group’s question, so that you can differentiate between them.
Don’t worry, only the Answer Group gets to see these letters.
If you share an answer publicly, a group’s question number may be doubled (e.g. if you answer Group A’s Question 1 publicly, Group B will see it as Question 1, as well as their own Question 1).

Q: Who can delete questions?
A: On the Question side, only Draft questions may be deleted. Once a question has been submitted, it cannot be deleted.
On the Answer side, an Answer Coordinator may Archive a question. To archive a question, hover your mouse over the question, click the question's pull-down menu and select Archive Question. An Archived question will be removed from the grid and can only be displayed by selecting Archived Question from the Status menu.

Q: A Question Author drafted a question. The Question Coordinator submitted it. Whose name appears on the question?
A: The Question Author's name appears on the question.

Q: How can I better manage questions that are being answered too slowly?
A: Firmex changes the colour of a question depending on the amount of time it has  remained unanswered. After 24 hours the date submitted of the question will change to yellow, then orange, then red in your question list.  You can also sort questions by date submitted or by priority, then select a group of assigned questions and select “Send reminder” from the menu to gently nudge your experts along in finishing their answers.
You can also look at Q&A Reports > Assigned Questions and see which users are assigned the most number of questions - and feel free to reassign them to less busy experts.

Q: What is an Archived Question?
A: Archived questions are questions that are no longer shown to any question groups or users in the answer group except the ACs.  For example, if a question group leave the Q&A process, ACs will typically archive all of their questions to remove them from being worked on.

Q: How are more than 20 Questions/Answers displayed?
A: The tab will display 20 questions at a time. When you scroll to the bottom of the page, more questions/answers will be loaded. You may use the filters/presets on the left, as well as the Search tab at the top-right of the grid to filter your results.

Q: On the Answer side, what is the difference between a Draft Answer and a Proposed Answer?
A: A Draft Answer is an answer that has been drafted by an Expert and submitted to the Answer Coordinator. A Proposed Answer is an answer that is waiting to be approved by an Approver. A Proposed Answer will only appear when there is an Approver on the answer group.

Q: I don’t see any questions/answers in the “To Approve/Submit” filter.
A: See above. To Approve/Submit answers only appear with the role of Approver on the Answer Group. Without the role of Approver, questions are In Progress.
Users

Q: Do I need to have a Question Coordinator and a Question Author in a Question Group, or can I just have one?
A: If you would like to have a funnel through which questions are asked, assign one person to be a Question Coordinator. That person can review all questions before they are submitted.

Q: What happens if I don’t have a Question Coordinator, just a Question Author?
A: The permissions of the Question Author will be “bumped up” to that of a Question Coordinator. That is, the Question Author will be able to submit questions. If there are no QC, the QA cannot Draft questions, only submit them.

Q: Can I have more than one Question / Answer Coordinator?
A: Yes. Multiple QCs or ACs will have the same permissions and can perform the same actions, which is useful when one AC or QC is busy or out of the office.

Q: Do I need a Question Coordinator? What if all my users are Question Authors?
A: If there is no Question Coordinator, the Question Author will be able to Submit questions, as well as perform the roles typically assigned to a Question Coordinator.

Emails

Q: When do emails go out? What emails go out immediately vs. in the digest?
A: There are two types of emails: Task emails and Digest emails.
Task emails are sent out immediately after an event takes place, such as new question submitted..
Digest emails are sent out hourly or daily, depending on how a group’s notification frequency is set in the Q&A Settings. The digests include the events that have happened in the previous period (e.g. one hour or one day). The digest will display a maximum of 3 events in the email with a link to view more events, if available.
Note: Q&A emails will only be sent out if the data room is in Online status and only to Question Groups who are Active or Read-Only.

Q: My project’s Document Activity Notification is off. Will Q&A emails still be sent?
A: Yes.

Q: At what time are the Daily Digest emails sent?
A: Approximately 9AM Eastern.

Q: Can Q&A emails be turned off?

A: Yes, Digest emails and/or Task emails can be turned off by a Project Administrator or Project Manager in Q&A Settings - Group Settings.

Once in Group Settings, the Task emails can be set to Immediate or None and the Digest emails can be set to Daily, Hourly or None.

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