How to enable the external reporting feature

Article Objective: To assist admin users with navigating the Active Platform to enable the external reporting feature.

Context: Often, a firm wishes to maintain a reporting file (e.g. Xero Practice Ledger or XPA Ledger) separate from the client's accounting file (e.g. Xero Business Edition). The reporting file is used to generate the financial statements for the financial period.  

The new 'Export to External Reporting' feature will facilitate this, so that you can import the data from the client's accounting software, process the year-end work in Active Workpapers, and then export the finalised trial balance to Xero Practice Ledger to generate the financial statements. 

Note: If the client account file is also used for generating financial statements, you can process a balancing journal in Active Workpapers as per this guide: How to perform journals in Workpapers.      

Please refer to the Glossary for definitions of key terms used in this article.              


Visual representation of data flow

Refer below for a visual representation of the data flow from one accounting software to another.

Accessing Workpapers admin in Admin Centre

Navigate to the Active Platform home page.

Click on your name icon and press Admin Centre. 

Click on Settings under the Firm banner. 

Active Workpapers ships with the settings. 

Enabling the external reporting feature

Firm settings

Under the 'Firm Settings' section, select the checkbox for Allow Binders to export to an external reporting system. This will turn on the external reporting feature.

Standard chart

Next, you have to define the standard chart of accounts for the firm. Navigate to the Workpapers Admin page from the general Admin Centre. 

Select Standard Chart under the Binders tab. 

By default, Active Workpapers ships with a Business Fitness standard chart of accounts.  

Firm administrators can add additional standard headings with the following attributes:

  • Account number
  • Account name
  • Define whether it is a Lead Schedule
  • Default Mapping Code (Mandatory)
  • Default Swinging Account
  • Mandatory or Optional

Note: If you are using Active Ledger, the Active Ledger chart of accounts will take precedence, and there is no need to configure it in Active Workpapers.

For more information on how to do this, see the administrator article: How to create a standard chart of accounts

Account mapping

Once you have completed the above, navigate back to the general Admin Centre and select Account Mapping.

Select the External Reporting Systems tab. 

Here, you will be able to add the various reporting systems that your firm uses by selecting Add New External Reporting System. 

A pop-up will appear where you will have to outline the name of the system and select the source type, as below.     

Click Save and Close.    

Adding mapping, benchmark and export codes

For information on how to add mapping, benchmark and export codes, see the knowledge article: How to add mapping, benchmark and export codes

Using the external reporting feature

For information on how to use the external reporting feature, see the knowledge article: How to use the external reporting feature.      

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