What should FERC filers know about XBRL reporting?

If you work at or own an energy company in the US regulated by Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), you probably spend substantial time, resources, and money complying with government mandates and reporting requirements. To ease the compliance process, improve accuracy, and speed up analysis of financial data, FERC decided to swap applicable Visual FoxPro based e-forms with an XBRL-based data collection system in June of last year. This meant that all energy companies regulated by FERC must submit and file their utility reports in the XBRL format starting Q4 2021.

Is your company prepared to make the transition? Do you have experts, software, or solutions that can facilitate the regulatory filing? An excellent place to start looking for answers to these questions is understanding more about XBRL and its merits. Here is a low-down on all you should know about it.

What is XBRL?

XBRL (eXtensible Business Reporting Language) is an open international standard for digital business reporting. Anyone can use this language to collect the exact data they want, unambiguously. They are akin to barcodes, telling you exactly what data is available in a report. They are tagged with specific taxonomies to provide information about how this data comes together for a particular operation or financial insight.

XBRL is machine-readable

Data is made consistent across companies facilitating data relations. Considering all information is tagged according to a specific taxonomy, reporters can be confident that consumption and analysis of data are accurate and based on previously agreed-upon definitions. Data is tagged across many layers, linked by XBRL tags, providing a birds-eye view of information. For instance, when an XBRL user is looking for profit, a simple element search will identify values along with other vital attributes like currency, scale, period, and dimensions.

XBRL can be widely used

XBRL as a language is used by regulators and other individuals spanning various professions and capacities. Each of them uses this for their specific requirements. The underlying advantage is the universal understanding of standard reporting tags that are analyzed differently by each consumer.

It is an efficient filing system

Apart from saving time, XBRL also helps:

  • minimize reporting efforts
  • reduce manual errors through validated data accuracy
  • develop best practices due to standardization of data

It is the missing piece in your compliance puzzle

XBRL tagging is a critical piece of FERC compliance. If you are keen on making this compliance unchallenging, the best step you can take is to pick a reporting solution that can ease your burden. Scout for a solution that simplifies the process, is user-friendly, collaborative, and integrates seamlessly with your current functioning systems and software. It is also imperative to find a solution provider who can offer support beyond just XBRL filing. Information security, quality, and success rate of the solution should also play an essential role in your decision.

DataTracks, with a presence in 26 countries, has had over 15 years of experience in the field of compliance reporting. Having generated close to 185,000 reports, we have ensured the quality and assurance of proper reporting support at competitive prices. Our data confidentiality and efficient work has earned us 18,000 happy clients.

We have a flagship Data Point Model (DPM) based product, which is extensively used by Insurance companies and Banks in the European Union for preparing their regulatory compliance reports in XBRL. Learn more, and start your compliance journey, get in touch with us at enquiry@datatracks.com

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