Top 5 reasons to Outsource iXBRL

22 Jun, 2015  Posted By Stephen Parnham   Posted in iXBRL

Although commercial businesses and accountancy firms have historically enjoyed the very real flexibility of preparing statutory accounts and tax computations in Microsoft Word or Excel, Irish Tax & Customs have found that the variety of formats and styles created significant issues in processing this diversity.  iXBRL is the solution for Irish Tax & Customs and has been for well over two years. Since submissions must be in that format businesses and professional firms are faced with a dilemma when converting files into iXBRL for submission to Irish Tax & Customs.

While some small, single-entity submissions can be made using a template, for many the real choice is a straightforward one of either investing in XBRL tagging software or outsourcing the work to an iXBRL provider.

So what are the advantages of outsourcing ?

It almost always comes down to the same five crucial factors: expertise and experience, risk management, time efficiency, cost and convenience.

1. Expertise and Experience

iXBRL conversion software requires people who understand Irish tax and accounting at the appropriate level. Even automated solutions require this kind of expertise during the fixing and review stages, so outsourcing is an attractive option for those organisations which do not wish to make the necessary investment in in-house resources, whether those resources are employees or software.

Where a business or professional firm is using iXBRL tagging software there is always the possibility of knowledge and skill gaps as well as the difficulty of staying on top of current developments such as full tagging.

An outsourcer will have the experienced iXBRL experts tag all accounts and deal with all the technical issues which may arise.

2. Risk Management

Irish Tax & Customs is looking for certainty, continuity and reliability.  Satisfying those criteria is its objective and it is an unfortunate fact that not all iXBRL submissions to Irish Tax & Customs are successful first time.  Where accounts have been tagged in-house, it is up to the preparer to fix any errors flagged by Irish Tax & Customs.

An outsourced iXBRL provider will test file the final iXBRL document against the Irish Tax & Customs validation Gateway before the handover to customers which means any errors are fixed prior to submission.

3. Time Efficiency

Depending on the software in use, iXBRL tagging a whole document can take some time.   Preparing the iXBRL account conversions and reports and checking and reviewing them can be a demanding process.  Turnaround time for jobs is often an important consideration, particularly where there are tax driven deadlines to be met.

Outsourcing this work allows businesses and accountancy firms to free up time to focus on their core commercial activities of acquiring and delivering on fee earning work and client care. An outsourced iXBRL tagging service can be invaluable in reducing the turnaround time of jobs and eliminating distraction from core activities.

4. Cost

For many businesses, outsourcing can prove the most cost-effective long-term solution from the start, particularly where the cost of in-house conversion software increases with the number of iXBRL documents required and / or there is considerable downtime during the implementation phase.

5. Convenience

Having prepared accounts and computations in Microsoft Word or Excel or Adobe PDF, the outsourcers client firm submits the results to the outsourcer via a secure online portal.  The outsourcer takes over from there. The iXBRL-compliant accounts are returned to the client, along with a comprehensive tag report.  The client only needs to keep an eye on the turnaround time which is often quite predictable.

Beneath that experience of convenience is, of course, the certainty that all those issues arising from expertise and experience, risk management, time efficiency and cost have been consistently addressed each and every time by someone else who specialises in the service and is focussed on delivering to their client.  Getting the five crucial factors right can be summed up in a single phrase: Peace of Mind !

About DataTracks: DTracks Limited is a subsidiary of DataTracks Services Limited. With more than 10 years track record, DataTracks is a global leader in preparation of financial statements in XBRL and iXBRL formats for filing with regulators. DataTracks prepares more than 12,000 XBRL statements annually for filing with regulators such as SEC in the United States, HMRC in the United Kingdom, Revenue in Ireland, ACRA in Singapore and MCA in India.

The views expressed are that of the author’s and DataTracks is not responsible for the contents or views expressed therein. If any part of this blog is incorrect, inappropriate or violates the IP rights of any person or organization, please alert us at We will take immediate action to correct any violation. To find out more about DataTracks, visit or send an email to


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