Looking at individual SEC XBRL financial filings is helpful. Looking across many, many SEC XBRL financial filings with a focus on one specific thing at a time is likewise beneficial. Carefully and consiously comparing and contrasting many SEC XBRL financial filings helps one build a mosaic, increasing ones understanding of digital financial reporting.
I have updated the document Digital Financial Reporting Principles. This is still a draft, but an improvement over the prior version.
While that document is extremely helpful to external financial reporting managers to make them conscious of what it takes to create a correct and usable digital financial report, such as an SEC XBRL financial filings, there is another use for that document: for creating better software.
If a software developer endeavored to understand that document they would realize all the features they could add to their product to help external financial reporting managers to both be conscious as to what tasks they need to perform to get their digital financial report correct and more importantly that the software could do to help the user!
Business rules are not the enemy, they provide the salvation. Business rules is what will make digital financial reporting work.
The question is not whether software vendors will or will not implement these rules. I can pretty much guarantee that they will. They really have no choice. The question is how they will implement the rules.
This is a summary of the things which contributed to improvements in this version as compared to the prior version of this document:
- Digital disclosure checklist framework
- Digital disclosure checklist components
- Understanding minimum processing steps for effective use
- Summary information about evaluating against the minimum criteria
- Mind boggling diversity SEC XBRL financial filings
- Choice of Financial Reporting Supply Chain: Guessing Game or Not?
- Analysis of 6,644 SEC XBRL Financial Filings
- Financial report ontology
- Prototype tool for viewing disclosures (Web Application)
The document Digital Financial Reporting contains important background information which is helpful in understand the digital financial reporting principles. Financial Report Semantics and Dynamics Theory is also an important document.