“Technology takes processes of yesterday and makes it simpler, faster, accessible, and more cost-efficient.”
South Africa has become amongst the few countries to carry innovation in financial reporting using cutting-edge technology. It has standardised the financial data of all public and qualifying entities and made it accessible to investors, regulators, and other stakeholders.
The Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) introduced and mandated the use of iXBRL format, a digital financial reporting system, when submitting the Annual Financial Statement (AFS) from 1st July 2018. iXBRL is an Inline eXtensible Business Reporting Language, designed to deliver business information in a format that provides benefits in preparation, analysis, and communication of the data.
CIPC’s drive towards digitisation
Traditional methods using paper-based or PDF reports which are manually checked by the regulators leave a lot of room for errors and non-compliance. The number of reports generated annually by all the companies combined cannot be efficiently managed by the CIPC. It leaves them with little or no time to analyse the financial data and turn it into meaningful information for the stakeholders or to investigate the non-compliant cases.
As a result, the CIPC leaped forward and drove the reporting system towards the digital era. It mandated the reporting of AFS along with the annual financial reports in iXBRL format.
Power of iXBRL
iXBRL is a powerful technology for corporate reporting and has been widely adopted in different countries. It has made financial information readable and accessible without wastage of time and money. It offers many potential benefits to the preparers and consumers, along with the hope to fully automate reporting from company to regulators, auditors and agencies.
Companies will no longer have to submit different reports to different regulators and it does not have to be prepared manually, making the report free of duplication and inconsistency. CIPC can achieve its mission of better regulatory compliance and greater transparency for investors. More manpower can now be dedicated to the crucial task of analysing industry trends and the economic growth of the country.
Bringing the change in our system
Like any new regulation, this too might seem like an administrative burden on the companies if the benefits are not fully understood. Once companies understand the ease of reporting and efficiency that comes with iXBRL, they will realise that it is worth the effort.
DataTracks is one such company that has been evaluated and approved by CIPC as iXBRL software service provider. It is a pioneer in providing regulatory reporting across the world and has delivered over 172,000 iXBRL instance documents so far. With a team of experts, assured quality and cost-effectiveness, we can make your company transition free of any hassle. Get in touch with us at email@example.com or call us on +27 10 446 9061.