Marketing & branding: Is the name right? | AccountingWEB

Marketing & branding: Is the name right?

When I first raised the idea of iXV last year on AccountingWEB, there was a muted response from members. From the material presented so far, have we formulated the proposition in a way that makes sense to you?

There is still some simmering resentment about everything to do with iXBRL, so one of our objectives with this project will be to get accountants to see that they can use the electronic tagging system to their advantage too. What do you think are the most compelling benefits that the system could deliver, and how would you suggest we communicate them to accountants and iXV partners?

Finally - and this is a somewhat touchy subject - have we got the name right? What do you think of iXV as a brand, or do we need to attach something more to explain what the service actually does? Can you think of any other names that would really reach out and grab people’s attention? 

Darren Falkingham's picture

A little bit of background to iXV

Darren Falkingham | | Permalink

iXV is a joint partnership with CoreFiling - the inventors of iXBRL, and the designers of HMRC's own iXBRL taxonomies. So, iXV runs on exactly the same technology that HMRC uses to check everyone's iXBRL company accounts.

The project name iXV was chosen to stand for 'iXBRL validator' - however, it quickly became clear that validation (JFCVC) was just a tiny part of a much bigger, more useful picture of what iXBRL can do.

In addition to checking iXBRL accounts for well-formed tagging, and for compliance with HMRC / Companies House joint filing, iXV acts as an extra pair of (very quick) eyes to check through company accounts. It speeds up what is usually a very manual process - it could literally save you days over the course of a year.

We've kept our initial ruleset small, but it offers a real taste of the range of checks, calculations and KPIs that iXV can facilitate above and beyond checking for online filing compliance.

As John mentions, the name iXV may or may not be right for the service - please do give us your thoughts and suggestions!

And if you want to get involved in testing iXV, have a quick read of this post here...

Cheers for now,
Darren Falkingham
Head of Ecommerce, Sift Media

taxhound's picture

It all sounds

taxhound | | Permalink

Hideously complex to me.  I still don't understand what ixbrl really is, which I do not like.  Thankfully, I press a button and my accounts are converted into ixbrl - but without spending hours, I would prefer to understand it better.  The name is a turnoff to be honest.  Can't it give some indication of what it is or does in the name rather than just being a string of incomprehensible letters?

John Stokdyk's picture

Interesting persctive - thanks

John Stokdyk | | Permalink

Thanks for your comment, taxhound. It's a good reminder to those of us who have been grappling with this stuff for a while that we still need to do a of background work to get across the concepts of both iXBRL and our automated reviewing system.

A good accounts production system will apply iXBRL tags to all of the required data elements within your accounts  (although to be absolutely honest at the moment, HMRC is only insiting that 15 specific bits are included , but that will change). Some programs may have GAAP and other tests built in, such as ensuring your reporting period ends after it begins, and that your company number is correctly formatted. But some may not.

The premise of our checking is not that your AP and tagging software is wrong, but that there may be elements within the accounts that will fail HMRC's checks, or values that put the figures outside norms that HMRC will consider as acceptable. So our service will attempt to be the extra pair of eyes that looks over accounts before you send them in - and we plan to base the checks around the things that an accountant would typically check for before they submit an accounts file to HMRC.

Your comment on the name is also interesting and if others come up with similar views, we may also start looking to AccountingWEB members to help us refine it.

Darren Falkingham's picture


Darren Falkingham | | Permalink

Hi taxhound, and thank you for sharing your thoughts.

As John says this raises some important points about iXBRL, what it does, and what we at AccountingWEB are trying to build.

iXBRL is a way of describing the 'facts' in a set of accounts to a computer - HMRC's computer, let's say. ('Facts' could be numbers, percentages, dates, names, accounting policies, etc)

Because iXBRL does this, we can take those 'facts' and compare them, add them up, calculate differences, check them against certain limits... even just make sure that they are there when they should be.

This is what iXV (or whatever we call it!) does - it's a service that can automatically read a set of iXBRL accounts, and check them against a range of criteria.

The next step is to decide what we check. There will be hundreds of 'facts' in a set of accounts, and millions of possible ways in which to check, compare and calculate those facts.

(One of the things the service will always check is compliance with HMRC and Companies House joint filing rules - and we're using exactly the same technology as them too)

This is where we think we can all work together - to develop and refine a service that quickly checks a set of accounts, saving you time, and giving you and your clients reassurance that the accounts are all present and correct before submitting them online to HMRC.

This now feels like a very long post - I hope I haven't confused the matter...!

Kind regards,

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