Deloittes takes on P2P technology

Instead of storing the content on its own servers, the Big Five firm will make the information available to staff directly from the publisher’s server via an online P2P connection.

Deloittes has 2000 auditors and another 1500 staff across different practices in the UK that need to access external accounting and auditing standards from publishers like ABG, as well as internal interpretations and best practice guidelines.

The company is in the first phase of deploying the P2P application from NextPage that sits on an IIS web server and connects D&T to a server address at ABG using a unique ID and password.

The P2P software then automatically reformats the regulatory content from ABG into a Deloittes template that can be accessed by the auditors at their desktops or from a laptop via a browser.

‘The P2P element is that we are not storing any of ABG’s data on our server. We would previously store that on our web server as well as any processing we needed to do to make it available to the auditors,’ said Peter Danson, senior manager of the National Assurance and Advisory Group at Deloittes.

Danson said the software saves on the need for a central repository to store all the content at the firm.

‘The external guidelines are in the region of 200Mb to 250Mb of data, and our internal information is something like 250,000 documents,’ he said.

But the use of P2P in large corporates is currently limited to specialist operations like this, with research scientists at pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline also using P2P technology from Lotus Notes creator Ray Ozzie’s company, Groove Networks.

P2P will become more widely adopted as technology like web services matures, but it is still too immature, according to Simon Yates, senior analyst at researcher Forrester.

‘It is a technology in search of a business problem to solve. Companies will find specific business operations out of the tens of thousands they handle, and find very specific things that benefit from P2P,’ he said.


Deloitte & Touche website

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