Artificial intelligence, big data, block chain, cyber security… The growing buzz around these advanced technologies worries many accountants. Let me reassure them.
The Annual Survey Report from Wolters Kluwer states that apparently only 17% of firms completely understand the impact AI will have over the next three years. Various companies find it difficult to digest all the information about those subjects, adjust on time and still find the time to run their day-to-day operations.
The profession IS changing
Fear of automation
Most accountants have already noticed it. Accenture actually investigated the process of automation in accounting and predicts that by 2020 80% of all accounting and finance tasks will be delivered with automation. Automation is necessary. Accountants need more time for for strategic thinking and consultation with clients.
Fear of the cloud
Another challenge most firms face is data security. The new data protection law GDPR already completely reshaped the way organizations approach data privacy and firms who are not compliant could now face heavy fines. 55% of Millennial business owners demand a cloud‑based technology to manage this but other firms can be hesitant to pick a cloud solution to ensure their clients sensitive financial data. But reality does not confirm their fear. Today cloud solutions provide a far greater level of security than most firms can afford for their internal servers.
Accountants are changing as well
Those who say accounting is a dying profession because of automation are simply wrong. The profession may be changing, many accountants are changing with it. That is why it is not surprising that 92% of the firms that do use an integrated solution for their bookkeeping feel confident about their ability to keep up pace with change.
How you can keep up
If you are not using an integrated solution, like for example Adfinity, you should seriously consider if it is worth the switch for your organisation. Especially SME’s can profit a lot and take advantage of automation and these new technologies.
It will improve their workflow efficiency tremendously so they will be able to focus on strategic advice or guidance, help with tax planning, help with forecasting, provide better analytics… All services that are high in demand.