XBRL training is a big event happening in the corporate world – especially amongst the financial executives. Let us get somethings very clear.

It is necessary to file your Annual Return in xbrl format. This is a company secretary’s responsibility, but the work will have to be done by an accountant. It is obvious that one has to learn about xbrl, so you should look for some training. Let us look at some of the facts:

1. Unfortunately xbrl cannot be learnt in a day or two. Most phone calls and emails that we receive ask a simple question ‘Will I be able to file my Annual Return without buying any software tool, just by using the taxonomy, knowledge of accountancy, excel and the training that we receive?’. Sadly the answer is NO. It takes us about 100 days to teach a smart CA or ICWA the nuances of xbrl.

2. The market is getting mature, software is getting better. Soon there will be fantastic software which will convert your annual return into xbrl format without too much human inputs. However at the current stage the software expects you to have good working knowledge of xbrl, tagging, logic, and accountancy. You will need a lot of patience too in your early part of the xbrl learning. Going through a 2-3 day workshop will ensure that you do not get frustrated doing it for the first time. Here training helps.

3. If you are a member of the Board of directors, company secretary, CFO, auditor – you need to undergo at least a One day training to appreciate the nuances of xbrl. It helps.

4. Without undergoing any training, or reading any book, or having no knowledge of xbrl, you will not be able to file your return. Buying a software does not mean anything at all.

5. There are 3 options for converting your Annual Report into xbrl format – buying a tool, using an excel template and using a conversion service. The first tool expects you to have good working knowledge of xbrl and accountancy. The second option assumes that you have a good knowledge of accountancy, and a reasonable working knowledge of xbrl. The conversion service is a good option if you do not wish to learn xbrl for the current year.


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