Ask yourself the following questions before you start researching a company, to help you determine what to search for.
Is the company public or private? Public companies are required to report information about their company to the SEC and most likely you will be able to find large amounts of information on the company. Private and non-profit companies have less information published about them, you may need to speculate based on information on competitors or the industry as a whole.
Is it the headquarters or a subsidiary or division? When researching a subsidiary or division you may need to research the parent company in addition to the individual subdivision.
Local, national, or international? Determine the location of your company early in your search; this will determine which information resources will best suit your needs.
Newsworthiness – consider any big events that have occurred recently in your company. Use newspapers, magazines, and other popular publications to find out if they have hired a new CEO, produced a new product, or introduced new strategies.
Consider alternative sources of information – Government agencies, trade associations, competitors, suppliers, labor unions, or the company itself (annual reports, websites, or contacting the company and asking well-informed questions).
Use the following library databases to find information on specific companies.
Get to know about your company's public face, how it is presented by the media, and public opinion about your company. Search for the company name or top executives in newspapers, magazines, blogs, trade journals, and social media.