Users of Digita Accounts Production and Corporation Tax software don't have to worry as the software will automatically take care of the change to iXBRL accounts and tax computations, but if you are one of the thousands of small practitioners who currently produce final accounts in Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel, the answer is almost certainly no and you probably don't realise how big a change the move from PDF to iXBRL will be.

Currently, accounts filed electronically in PDF format are just an image of the accounts as they would appear if printed as they are only intended to be read by people.

iXBRL is quite different, it is designed to be read by computers, and that means that the information has to be laid out in a very specific way, with ‘tags’ to identify the meaning of information in the accounts. It simply will not be possible to create an iXBRL version of the accounts from Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel documents without an additional step to ‘tag’ the accounts values.

Hybrid Solution Using Microsoft Excel and Digita Accounts Production


If you are already using an efficient highly automated process using your own Microsoft Excel workbooks, it may be preferable to continue with this, but introduce Digita Accounts Production software near the end of the process to enable the production of iXBRL accounts to be automated. Whilst this may appear similar to using ‘mark up’ software, it has the advantage that instead of having to identify the ‘tags’ that are needed, you simply need to identify the nominal codes in Digita Accounts Production that your Excel records need to be imported into.


Is it safe?

Electronic Filing with HMRC is as safe as doing your banking online. That is to say that iXBRL filing has no better or worse security than existing online & offline filing options.

Why do we have to change?

Whilst Paper was a perfectly adequate method for filing in the past, eFiling via iXBRL gives HMRC a lot of advantages in their own processing costs and risk assessment quality. If you now have to invest in technology to meet that cost saving for HMRC, make sure you put a system in place that will allow you to benefit from lower production costs and decreased risks too!

I don't like technology/change and I'm panicing!

Don't panic. You are already sufficiently technologically advanced by visiting this website. Replacing existing `Office Suite` products that you are used to (such as Excel & Word) with specialist tools like Digita Accounts Production & Digita Corporation Tax will not expose you to any more technology (e.g. you are not exposed to XBRL if you use our integrated solutions), and we have the highest rated support team in our market!

When do I have to comply?

You can avoid iXBRL mandatory filing for a while longer if you try hard. Periods ending after 31 March 2010 qualify for mandatory iXBRL filing of accounts, but only if they are filed after 31 March 2011. If you have really simple cases and enough spare time in your compliance cycle you can file later periods earlier than the 31 March 2011 deadline and still use paper!

Can I just ignore it?

I'm afraid not. If you make no attempt to file electronically after 31 March 2011 then HMRC will reject your paper return and you will suffer the fines and penalties for a late filing (once you do eventually file electronically). However, HMRC have said they will be very sympathetic to people who have genuinely tried to file electronically but had problems. This `Soft Landing` should ensure that penalties and fines will not be persued against a taxpayer who suffers technology issues when filing.

Where can I get help?

From Digita. We have a team of people who are happy to help you. Get in touch and we will arrange everything for you.

iXBRL Corporation Tax Software
iXBRL Accounts Production Software


There is a lot of new terminology associated with the new eFiling regime. We hope you can find the explanations you need below, but do get in touch if you are struggling and we will do our best to answer your question and expand this section.


A single document that is (hopefully) valid according to the template. It must include all mandatory elements of the template, and none, all or some of the non-mandatory elements.


An XBRL template that defines all of the types of data which may be included in the XBRL instance, and their parameters and inter-relationships. For instance, the PBT (Profit Before Tax) figure in your accounts is represented within the XBRL taxonomy as … This shows the unique name which HMRC will associate with PBT, the minimum and maximum value that you can put into PBT, the allowed currencies and so on …

XBRL eXtensible Business Reporting Language:

An international specification for defining business data in a machine readable format.

iXBRL Inline XBRL:

A specification of XBRL that allows individual data elements from an XBRL instance to be embedded within a customised presentation of the information, such as a Web Page.

iXBRL software main page >>

Technical specification

General Requirements


Digita Accounts Production Digita Corporation Tax