Wednesday Oct 01, 2014

Deferred Revenue Replaced by Revenue Performance Obligations

I was talking to Seamus Moran again the other day.

He was saying he had some sympathy for the existing US GAAP folk who had so much to unlearn in respect of the new revenue recognition standard.

He told me that with deferred revenue, you took a sales invoice, and predicted when you’d put that into revenue in the P&L.  You’d add carve-ins and deduct carve-outs and deduct releases to the P&L.

But the new standard takes all of that away.  Instead of accounting for deferred revenue, sales invoices you had to postpone on the sale side, you now have to account for performance obligations, what you owe customers.

It is a big change.  It is not sales invoice-based. The FASB & IASB spelled out the four steps to get a performance obligation value, and they did it so you would get to a performance obligation value, not a delta to a sales invoice.  He said he can recite them: Step 1, ID the contract.  Step 2, ID your promises (assign ID numbers), explicit and implicit, to customers as performance obligations.  Step 3, value the transaction in total, what are you going to get in total.  Step 4, using standalone selling prices (SSP) or estimated selling prices (ESP), allocate the total to the performance obligations. 

At this stage, you now have valued your performance obligations.  No need to go looking at invoices, carvings, or releases. Sure, you may not have all the necessary data, or the quantities aren’t known yet, etc., but this is data you are supposed to book keep, at which you should value revenue, contract liabilities, and contract assets.  Quantity times performance obligation times SSP or ESP.

He says that, actually, embracing the performance obligation idea makes this whole standard much more easy to digest.

Stay tuned for the next in our series of blog posts about the new revenue recognition standard. 

Tuesday Jul 30, 2013

Impact of the Upcoming US GAAP and IFRS Lease Accounting Proposal

Back in May 2013, the FASB and the IASB published another Exposure Draft on Lease Accounting, inviting comment through September this year.   Our developers have been reviewing it, and Seamus Moran, our resident IFRS expert, sat with Annette Melatti, Senior Director, Financials Product Marketing, to chat about the potential impact on Lease Accounting and ERP software.  Listen to the podcast for more details.

Seamus also met with Ashima Jain of PwC to take a more detailed look at the specifics of this Exposure Draft.  The proposal is quite a change to existing practice, not only requiring us to put many equipment leases on the balance sheet, but also incorporating new valuation, accounting, and classification of leases.  Watch the new screencast which shares the specifics.

It will be interesting to see how the public reacts when the comment period ends in September, and what route the path to a final new standard takes in 2014 and 2015.

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Focusing on solutions for the Office of Finance, this blog will highlight key financial management market trends, events and other news of interest.

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