Online iXBRL checker: We need your help

AccountingWEB has entered a partnership with iXBRL experts at CoreFiling to create an automated iXBRL reviewing system that checks electronic accounts for tagging and technical errors that might lead to rejections. But we need your help to make sure the system works the way accountants want.

Developed with the codename “iXV”, the online accounts reviewer is ready for pre-launch testing and we are looking for volunteers to help us iron out any kinks and to refine the criteria against which accounts are checked. Please apply to join our private beta-testers group if you would like to try out the tool at this early stage and become part of the ongoing development process.

The underlying software is the same as that used by HMRC, but apart from basic validation checks in the public domain we do not have access to the tax department’s full basket of error and risk criteria.

The idea behind our partnership with CoreFiling is that the AccountingWEB community can devise its own rules, based on the typical last-minute checks an accountant would perform when reviewing a CT600 pack before submitting it to HMRC. With a set of community-endorsed checks in place, AccountingWEB members will be able to save time and gain extra peace of mind by passing accounts through the automatic reviewer before submitting them to the taxman.

When Companies House makes it mandatory to submit statutory accounts electronically with iXBRL, the system will be able to apply similar checks.

For the past two years, the profession has struggled to get to grips with the transition to iXBRL efiling, but those with experience of the process warn that effort involved in reviewing tags and snags is more onerous than actually preparing the file itself. iXV is designed to reduce this workload, and with your help and feedback, the software will not only boost your productivity, but also reduce the risk of rejections and potential tax investigations for clients whose accounts go through the system.

Visit the iXV testers group for more information.

Comments

Without charge ...

JC | | Permalink

Presumably all use of their products by Aweb member will be free now and for the forseeable future ?

This must be the quid pro quo for the above request and the slighly incestous affiliation between the two organisations (ref: endorsements from Simon & John on CoreFiling web site)

 

John Stokdyk's picture

It's not a "slightly incestuous affiliation"...

John Stokdyk | | Permalink

It's a commercial partnership. They've got the tools and we've got members who may want to access the service and contribute to the development of a set of communal rules to check iXBRL accounts against before filing them with HMRC.

CoreFiling have their own products which they will continue to sell and service. When it launches commercially there will be a small charge for using iXV and we will share the revenue. That's all there is to it - we think it's an innovative new way to provide members with a useful service.

Any "endorsements" on the CoreFiling site from me or Simon are probably based on complimentary things we've written about them in the past. Lots of other companies do the same thing.

Seahorse is a good system if you want a standalone tagging tool and it was apparent even before we started talking to them about this project that when it comes to iXBRL, CoreFiling know what they're talking about.

50% of endorsements on the site ..    1 thanks

JC | | Permalink

No-one doubts that their products are good and of course a lot of companies place endorsements from 3rd parties on their site - nevertheless two out of a total of 4 (i.e. 50%) from one organisation that subsequently forms an affiliation with them is interesting

Surely the crux of the matter is '.. members who may want to access the service and contribute to the development of a set of communal rules to check iXBRL accounts ..'

So on the face of it (maybe incorrect) the deal is that members give their resources free so that CoreFiling can build/enhance a product which will then be sold back to Aweb members - '.. When it launches commercially there will be a small charge for using iXV ..'

Again (probably incorrect) but cannot recall CoreFiling having made any contribution to the Aweb site in the past whereas other XBRL provider members have historically engaged and assisted members on the site - thereby helping to grow the Aweb site.

Were any of the providers who have contributed to Aweb in the past (a couple spring to mind) considered as candidates for a partnership with Aweb over this matter ?

Guess it’s all about ‘monetising’ the Aweb membership but one wonders whether people are comfortable being traded as a commodity or indeed if this approach is what they signed up for in the first place

John Stokdyk's picture

50% factor

John Stokdyk | | Permalink

Is probably because Simon Hurst and I made up 50% of the people who were actively writing about iXBRL at the time Seahorse launched.

CoreFiling is one of many Suppliers who support AccountingWEB and they approached us (possibly because we have taken iXBRL seriously for several years and put a lot of effort into educating our members about it).

[Irrelevant personal comments removed here. JS]

The collaborative concept behind iXV is that if a lot of members devote a very small amount of time to the project, they can all benefit from the collected wisdom. We need the project to pay for itself and turn a reasonalbe profit, like any other business proposition, so there will be a charge. AccountingWEB is not a charity, and our entire business model is based around "monetising" access to our members through advertising and newswires. It doesn't seem to have put off the tens of thousands of accountants who have registered to join the site so far.

This is a new approach that delivers active accounting expertise via the web rather than just information. We think members will be interested in collaborating on a tool that will speed their pre-filing accounts reviews and are proud to be associated with such an innovative project.

If you want no part of it, you don't have to use it. But could I politely ask that if you want to raise questions about iXV, you do so in a slightly more constructive manner?

Will all the “rules” be published?

ringi | | Permalink

Provided all the rules that are added to the system due to the efforts of accounting web user are published as a Check List document, I don’t see any issues with the arrangement.

John Stokdyk's picture

For users and prospective users, yes

John Stokdyk | | Permalink

I don't see any problem documenting the checks within the confines of the iXV user forum, or within the iXV testing portal itself. But as I have already found some accountants are a little sensitive about exposing their internal checks to public scrutiny.

Also if you think ahead to what I see as Phase 2 of the project, when we try to assemble a basket of checks that are much more closely tied to tax investigation risks, there might be some resistance to openly telling HMRC what iXV is testing against.

Now if HMRC were quite open about some of its criteria, perhaps there could be a completely transparent scenario where everything was in the public domain. I'm not seeing that just now, but it's a nice concept. 

(NB: These are personal thoughts, those more closely involved with the product development team may have different views on this - it'll be good to find out what they think, and I'll report if I hear anything back).

Free of charge

Jiggler69 | | Permalink

I too was expecting this service to be free of charge on the Corefiling and Aweb site. To perhaps be some sort of loss leader to other services. To be fair, Aweb provides free access to many of their articles and monetising how they see fit is surely to be expected. Choosing to charge us for something we provide alot of the intellectual property for is up to them. Potential beta testers will as always vote with their feet, as will eventual (or not) customers of the finished product