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On this blog we will cover stories from all around the Exact ecosystem.

Posts Tagged ‘XBRL’

e-Bilanz, a challenge for all companies in Germany

Written by Sabine Christiansen on . Posted in Exact Globe

Working in an international environment, we have to deal with the fiscal authorities in different countries. Especially in central European countries there are ambitions to streamline activities by enforcing more and more e-government processes. As this is a quite new process, there are still a lot of changes required from the government.

As a result our customers are pushed to do most tax related reporting in an electronic way, partially in the cloud. Germany is a good example for this, where all VAT reports and the newly introduced e-Bilanz XBRL reporting need to be uploaded directly to the servers of Ministry of Finance – and of course all data needs to be secured.

In the context of the act to reduce tax bureaucracy (SteuBAG), German government claimed that all companies in Germany are obliged to hand over their annual financial statements in an electronic way. XBRL was chosen as a method since this is already an existing solution for disclosure of trade balances. Based on existing trade taxonomy (version 4), a new fiscal taxonomy has been created to issue reports in form of instance documents. These reports need to be uploaded to the Elster server.

As we support import of this new fiscal taxonomy with Exact Globe Next product update 404, now we are starting detailed preparation on step 2, which means automatic upload of instance documents to the Elster-Server of fiscal government. This second part is planned for product update 405. Splitting solution into two parts should offer possibility to our customers to already set up maintenance, do all preparations and be ready in time for sending the report documents.

For companies in Germany this newly introduced e-Bilanz is quite a challenge, as all used GL account charts need to be checked and adjusted, before the fiscal taxonomy elements can be linked to them. As there is no default account template given in Germany, those links for all demanded reports need to be done manually one by one. And this of course can only be done in close relationship with the company’s tax consultant. As a result a lot of preparation is needed, which is a big effort for the all companies in Germany. Generating the reports (instance documents) and their upload to fiscal server is relatively simple and will become common practice soon.

Luckily product update 404 already offers possibility to do the biggest part of this job, so they are well prepared before their first reports need to be created and uploaded. If you want to know more about this topic, please check release notes for product update 404, which will be available soon.

Once upon a time in Taxland

Written by Alexander Kutilov on . Posted in Exact Globe, Exact Online

Once upon a time there were two of them: The Bookkeeper and The One Who Sits on the Hill. The Bookkeeper was counting money, calculating and paying taxes so The One Who Sits on the Hill could collect them. Life was fair and peaceful. But one day The One Who Sits on the Hill wondered “How can I be sure that The Bookkeeper pays enough taxes?” Thus he summoned The Inventor and shared his doubts. “Not to worry,” reassured him The Inventor. “I’ll design a reporting form, The Bookkeeper would fill it in and you’ll keep everything in check.”

“Hm…” argued The Bookkeeper. “Look, what you’ve done: I have to count money, calculate and pay taxes, as well as fill in the form, while The One Who Sits on the Hill just collects the taxes. Is that fair?”  “No problem,” The Inventor said. “I’ll create a computer system to manage the financial administration and print the tax form as well as other reports. Piece of cake!”  And so the life became fair and peaceful again. The Inventor assisted both sides to change the rules and adjust the computer system. But one day The One Who Sits on the Hill complained: “Hey, Inventor! Why should I verify the data provided by The Bookkeeper manually? As if I have nothing better to do! I need my own system.”  “Right you are!” The Inventor agreed. “You’ll have your computer system, where all the reports would be verified. Moreover, I’ll make it so that The Bookkeeper will report the data directly into your system. Hence you won’t need to re-type the printed reports.” “Wow!” The One Who Sits on the Hill exclaimed. “That’s great! Let it be so!”  The Inventor kept his promise. But The Bookkeeper went furious, “Com’on! Now The Inventor overburdens me with work, while The One Who Sits on the Hill does nothing but collects taxes. That’s unfair!”

“Well people!” – sighed The Inventor. “I’ve got plenty of ideas: there is a system generating electronic taxation reporting with text or XML files. They will transfer the data from one system to another, even online. Forget data verification and deadlines! All you need is to push some buttons. Moreover, I’ve got another magic trick called XBRL. Your data will be mapped with the taxonomy elements and the system will generate an instant document for each report. The same system could be given to your banks and you won’t have to worry about making and validating reports.” “Huh!” exclaimed The Bookkeeper and The One Who Sits on the Hill in unison, “We don’t understand a word of it. However…  as you’ve never let us down before, do what you think is best.” The One Who Sits on the Hill puffed his chest, “Let’s call it a Law and you, The Inventor, will be responsible for our systems’ legal compliance.” Upon reflection The Inventor replied: “Hey! But then we all will become The Ones Who Sit on the Hill!”

A few years back European tax laws were changed, to require VAT-registered businesses to make online declarations. Fiscal authorities and tax payers have subsequently invested in relevant new technologies. However, online reporting still remains country specific, which is a major potential headache for law-abiding companies. Exact has set out to remedy this situation. We are devoting considerable resources to research and development, designing electronic forms to help individual customers translate their electronic registries and filings into solid legal compliance. A full implementation of these new functionalities has already taken place in the Netherlands, Belgium,  Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Luxembourg and in some other countries. Watch this space for more!

Exact Globe product update 400 in Controlled Release

Written by Richard Smits on . Posted in Exact Globe

On behalf of the Product Management team, I am pleased to announce that Exact Globe product update 400 is in controlled release. This new product update is planned to be generally available first week of January.

More than 30 customers are already lined up to participate in the controlled release and start using it. On top of that all of Exacts partners/resellers are able to download the 400 product update as well.

Taking into consideration the end year adjustments in your regional legislation, we have added in this product update new functionalities that are crucial to your operation and will facilitate your business. We have added among others the following features:

  • Generating XML files to support online VAT returns according to the HMRC requirements (British legislation)
  • XBRL functionality that facilitates electronic communication of business and financial data for German taxonomy
  • Supplying an electronic signature for sales documents (applicable for the Portuguese legislation)

Thanks to the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) initiative customers can make euro payments to anyone located in the euro area using a single bank account and a single set of payment instruments. As of this product update Exact Globe supports the national and cross-border euro direct debits throughout the SEPA area. As a result you are able to generate B2C and B2B national and cross-border euro direct debits in compliance with SEPA rules for banks in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Austria.   

Based on your feedback and suggestions, we continuously improve our products. In this product update you will find among others the following expansions:

  • Log reports to keep track of information changed by a user for better realization of the existing security infrastructure
  • Adjusting invoice screen for an easier selection of multiple invoices to print or process

 More about this product update soon!

 Picture credits

Do you want to drive in top gear?

Written by Peter van Katwijk on . Posted in Exact Online

Do you recognize the following? Nowadays, you as an entrepreneur are confronted on a regular basis with more and more requests from all kind of agencies to provide financial data.
Accountants, banks, tax authorities, Chamber of Commerce, etc. They all want to have financial data from you. And they all want to have it at different times, in different formats, sent to different kinds of portals. And if you’re unlucky, these agencies will ask for more data/details after the initial request was answered.

This phenomenon is becoming a real headache for many, costing people more and more time and money. You’re left with less and less time to do what you are really good at: Being an entrepreneur, running your business and earning money!

Sound familiar?
Well, the good news is that the financial software industry, together with the above mentioned agencies, has been busy trying to introduce and promote industry standards for a while: Standard formats, standard portals, etc.
These should make your life less stressful and reduce your costs.

The ultimate idea is that your financial software will automatically provide the correct requested data in a standard format to the appropriate agency at the right time – without any further hassle for you.
Of course, this is only after your approval – you’re still sitting in the driver’s seat. The financial software is just the gearbox to help you to drive in top gear.

The less good news is that this ultimate idea is not yet fully implemented. But be a little patient. We are on the way.
The current situation in The Netherlands is as follows:

Existing standard formats:

  1. For detailed financial information: 
    Auditfile financial (XAF)  – Mostly requested by Tax authorities and accountants
    XBRL-GL – A worldwide standard which is expected to replace the auditfile in the future.
  2. For financial reports:
    SBRStandard Business Reporting. A worldwide standard formally known as XBRL.
    Mostly used for credit reporting requested by banks, annual statements requested by Chamber of Commerce, tax returns requested by the tax authorities, etc.

Existing standard Portals:

  1. Digipoort:
    A portal for delivering the financial reports requested by Chamber of Commerce, tax authority and other government agencies.
  2. RapportagePortaal:
    A portal for delivering the credit reporting requested by banks.

Regarding the standard format Auditfile:
This format was already available a few years back. Since then it has been regularly improved. The latest version of the auditfile is version 3.1. This version contains extra information in comparison to the previous version (version 2.0). Namely:

  • Sub ledgers Accounts receivable and Accounts payable
  • Opening balance

By using this format instead of the previous version, you can provide more data to the requesting agency. As such, the chance that they will come back to you with a request for more information will be reduced.
Since 16-06-2010 Exact Online supports both version 2.0 and 3.1 of the Auditfile.

So, to come back to the question from our title: Do you want to drive in top gear? I assume you do. One little step in the process of getting there is to already use Auditfile 3.1  – when, for example, the NL tax authority or your accountant is requesting financial data. It will save you time.

Regarding the other standards mentioned above and other developments around this ultimate idea: I will come back to them in future blogs. So stay tuned!