In Chapter 2, we mentioned the impact of the differences in culture that slowed down the realisation of some of the savings from the integration of the Morrisons and Safeway retail organisations.
6.6 Often the focus of the due diligence process is very narrow, being led by legal and finance staff whose remit is to check that the finances and legal affairs are sound. A recent report of research carried out by the CIPD, Bacon & Woodrow and PricewaterhouseCoopers (CIPD, 2000) indicates that there are encouraging signs that Human Resources due diligence is increasingly performed well during deals. But the same report, disappointingly, shows that Human Resources professionals are less involved in the post-transaction integration activities. Involvement of Human Resources in the due diligence activities, however, does not always happen. According to the Watson Wyatt mergers and acquisitions survey (1 999), Human Resources professionals are in many cases only involved in the latter stages, often after the merger has
been announced. Lessons learned in the 1980s and 1990s indicate that it is essential to assess the people risks and to ensure that there is value to be realised from the Human Resources dimension of the merger.