“Multiple reports, one document”: CoreFiling on multiple target documents in Inline XBRL

Posted on June 3, 2022 by Editor

A useful recent blog post from Jonathan Rabbitt of CoreFiling explores the ‘target document’ feature in Inline XBRL. This, he says, “has a great deal of potential for streamlining reporting by making a single document suitable for submission to multiple regulators or to meet multiple goals.”

Using the target document feature, each fact in an Inline XBRL document can be associated with a target document, allowing it to contain data for multiple purposes and different audiences. For example, a report might cover both financial and sustainability reporting requirements. The Inline XBRL specification describes the process by which relevant facts can be picked out and assigned as required.

“Around the world, this feature is not in much use, but one place where it has been used to great effect is Denmark,” says Rabbitt, describing the Danish solution as very elegant and straightforward. “The Danish Business Authority (Erhversstyrelsen) permits filers to create an Inline XBRL document which contains tags for the ESEF taxonomy using the default target and the ÅRL (Annual Accounts) taxonomy using a target document named ‘DKGAAP’.” Danish filers are therefore able to create reports suitable for submission to multiple regulators within a single Inline XBRL file. “By defining a name for a target document, the Erhvervsstyrelsen has made it very simple for filers to create a single report that covers both mandates and for anyone reading the report to understand which mandate is associated with which target document.”

So is this a glimpse into the future? The target document feature is certainly very useful in facilitating the reuse of relevant digital data to meet different reporting requirements, and in ensuring consistency across disclosures – we agree that “it would be wonderful to see this feature used more widely around the world.” This is already on the horizon in the UK, with Project Director Jennifer Guest of the Financial Reporting Council stating: “In the UK’s Taxonomy Work Plan for 2023 we are adopting the Multiple Target Document Model. It will prove to be a cost-efficient way of filing and cut down on unnecessary error messages resulting from the single document model approach.”.

Read more here.

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