XBRL financial statements and sustainability information
Ernst & Young Nederland LLP publishes its annual financial statements and GRI sustainability information that is included in its integrated annual review in eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL). XBRL is an open technology standard for reporting and analyzing business and financial information. XBRL provides an identifying tag for each individual item of data which is computer readable and allows the information to be used interactively. Tags link data to generally agreed taxonomies (reporting language).
The following principles have been applied to prepare the XBRL instance documents:
- The XBRL instance documents solely include legally required information, for which elements are available in the taxonomy.
- Additional information in the financial statements and the sustainability part of the integrated annual review exceeding minimal (legal) requirements for which no standard taxonomy item is available is not included in the instance documents.
The EY XBRL Annual Financial Statements 2011/2012:
The EY XBRL Sustainability information 2011/2012:
The Assurance Reports:
The XBRL annual report contains both the consolidated and non-consolidated reports for Ernst & Young Nederland LLP and specifically refers to the Dutch taxonomy report “IFRS full” (http://nltaxonomie.nl/6.0/report/kvk/entrypoints/rpt-kvk-ifrs-full-NL-2011.xsd).
Compared to other (non-IFRS) reports available in the Dutch taxonomy, the “IFRS full” report has some inherent limitations due to the fact that the Dutch SBR Program has only implemented core components of the generic IFRS taxonomy. This imposes limitations on the creation of instance documents in accordance with the SBR guidelines. Most important limitation is caused by the “IFRS full” report lacking functionality to create context scenarios in accordance with the SBR guidelines.
We therefore did split our XBRL annual report into two XBRL instance documents: one containing the consolidated and the other the non-consolidated reports for Ernst & Young Nederland LLP.
With the introduction of the Global Reporting Initiative’s (GRI) taxonomy at the beginning of 2012, maturity of this taxonomy has been improved. We expect to increasingly use XBRL for disclosure of our sustainability information, including the use of GRI newest G4 guidelines due May 2013. Although we already disclose on GRI’s highest application level (A+) we aim to increasingly report on our integrated performance.
The sustainability information in our integrated annual review is prepared according to the new GRI taxonomy, which allows organizations to tag their sustainability data according to the international sustainability reporting guidelines of the GRI. The resulting XBRL instance document refers to the taxonomy location on GRI’s website: http://xbrl.globalreporting.org/2012-03-08/entrypoints/GRI-G31.xsd. Ernst & Young is one of the first companies to use the GRI G3.1 entry point of the GRI taxonomy.
Assurance on the XBRL reports
Our auditors have provided assurance reports for both the annual financial statements in XBRL and the GRI sustainability information in XBRL. The assurance reports are based on the four principles that are outlined in the AICPA’s “Principles and criteria for XBRL-formatted information”, that has been published in August 2012: completeness of the XBRL files, mapping of the source information, consistency of the XBRL files with the source information and the structure of the XBRL files.
Our auditors have used digital signing software to sign the instance documents. With XML Signer Viewer the integrity of the instance documents can be verified and (optionally) the instance documents can be saved in their original state (without auditors signature) on which our auditors have provided assurance.
Just like with data formats such as HTML and PDF, a viewer is needed to view the XBRL instance document. Both the signed versions of the XBRL instance documents as the original instance documents (without auditors signature) can be viewed with a viewer. A well-known free viewer is Arelle.
More information on XBRL can be found on http://www.ey.nl/xbrl.