Tupperware Brands Corporation

With a new SEC reporting team in place, the deadline for detailed XBRL tagging looming, and special financial reports due to the SEC, Tupperware Brands needed a way to streamline report development and filing.
  • Complete control over report development and no pencils down waiting periods
  • Fast ramp up due to the software’s intuitive design
  • Quick, simple 8-K and S-4 report development and filing

James Hunt was facing some big challenges as the new Director of External Reporting at Tupperware Brands, the company known worldwide for its quality housewares, beauty, and personal care products. The deadline for the company to start XBRL detail tagging was looming, and Hunt was still just learning the ropes at his new position.

Despite his own challenges, Hunt made a business-changing decision in his first two weeks on the job. He changed how the company handled SEC filings—switching from using a large, national printer with an XBRL bolt-on solution to using the fully integrated, cloud-based Wdesk SEC reporting solution.

It was a wise move.

In the following months, Hunt and his co-worker, Trista Muse, Manager of Investor Relations and Financial Reporting, settled in to working as a team, learned the new Wdesk platform, and overcame several reporting challenges, all without missing any filing deadlines.

A Solution Right Next Door

Hunt’s first test was to get up and running with Wdesk quickly. “During the demo, I saw that the application would take away a lot of our concerns, especially about XBRL. Our controller suggested we wait a quarter before we implemented the solution,” says Hunt. “But I pushed him on it, and we took the plunge right away. We haven’t regretted it since.”

In just 11 weeks, Hunt and Muse received training, accessed the solution, built their worksheets, and managed to file their 10-Q on the same day they normally would have. “It went very quickly,” says Muse. “The great thing about Wdesk is that it’s so close to the word processing and spreadsheet applications we’re used to—so it doesn’t take much adjustment.”

The great thing about Wdesk is that it's so close to the word processing and spreadsheet applications we're used to, so it doesn't take much adjustment.

— Trista Muse, Manager, Investor Relations and Financial Reporting, Tupperware Brands Corp.

Challenge Two

A bigger challenge lay in the fact that Tupperware Brands needed to start detailed XBRL tagging, a process that Muse worried about based on her previous experience with XBRL. For level 1 tagging, the company worked with a national printer that offers an XBRL bolt-on solution.

Muse had already created one report using that system. It was a slow, cumbersome process that required a pencils-down period. “Even though it was level 1 XBRL, we still had a 24-hour pencils-down period for making changes. It was frustrating to say the least,” she says.

To get any changes made, Muse had to spend hours formatting, printing, and marking up corrections before they could be sent back to the printer to be made within the file. “Then they might only get 75 percent of those correct. It was very inefficient and wasted a lot of time,” says Muse.

The experience left her more than concerned about the move to detailed tagging. “I was looking into the future and thinking that there just wasn’t going to be enough time do all of that during the quarter,” Muse added.

After using Wdesk to prepare Tupperware Brands’ XBRL files for several quarters-including detailed tagging for many-Muse is very pleased with the transition. “In the past, I had to switch from spreadsheets for reviewing, to the XBRL website for research, and finally to email for submission of changes. Now, I simply search for a tag within Wdesk based on key words, click on the tag to view a detailed description and taxonomy presentation, and click the green checkmark to select it,” explains Muse. “Everything I need to complete the process in a matter of seconds is right there in Wdesk.”

Even though they were learning XBRL detail tagging and using a new application, the Tupperware Brands team filed on time. “Our ability to do that was due to the fact that we were getting things done quicker with Wdesk,” says Hunt.

With a little more experience using the application, he expects the time- and monetary-savings to increase. “Next year, we should start to see savings in terms of time and cost. I think in our second year, our filing costs will be about 40–50 percent of what it was under our previous printer.”

Challenge Three

Just as Hunt and Muse were gearing up for their first detailed XBRL tagging, Tupperware Brands needed to file three 8-K’s simultaneously. The SEC reporting team decided to file two on their own using Wdesk, and asked an outside vendor to file the third. When that vendor missed a deadline, Hunt decided that was the last time Tupperware Brands would give up control of a filing by letting a third party file for them. “We paid for functionality to do filings with Wdesk, and there is no reason to pay anyone else to do it. Now we have complete control over our filing process,” he says.

About the same time, the SEC asked Tupperware Brands to respond to a comment letter related to their 10-K. “I wasn’t familiar with the process of how to respond to a comment letter to the SEC,” says Hunt. Thanks to the version control capabilities on Wdesk, he used it as a content creator to develop the letter. But he wasn’t sure how to get it to the SEC. “I had 20 minutes to file it and realized I could do it through EDGAR using Wdesk,” he says. “That was a big plus, and it was easy.”

Beyond the powerful tagging and report development on Wdesk, Hunt and Muse say the solution is loaded with features that make their jobs easier.

Hunt points to the version control, which gives him the ability to send out different versions for review and mark each with milestones. Muse says the solution’s comment feature keeps the team on track. She and Hunt use it to make notes within the documents for future reference. “It’s handy because when you roll the document forward, there are things that you don’t know the answer to, so we’re able to highlight those and review them later,” she says.

The team sees the potential for more great things from the solution. “Wdesk has so many features. It creates flexibility that each customer can tailor to their own needs,” comments Hunt. “I think this solution is great!”

Wdesk has so many features. It creates flexibility that each customer can tailor to their own needs.

— James Hunt, Director of External Reporting, Tupperware Brands Corp.

Download case study

Read More