The future of finance is the end of accountancy

Buildings in financial area
By Ceri Rogers, Event Director, Accounting Live

5 November 2018

The advance in technology has affected every business and sector in some way, good or bad, and accountancy is no exception, writes Ceri Rogers, Event Director at Accounting Live.

The challenge now is to discover and implement the right tools so that accountants can be of even greater value to their clients and wider company. As technology becomes increasingly more sophisticated, accounting no longer needs to adhere to the traditional ways of working. With the right tools and systems in place we can now make short work of reconciliations and bookkeeping and turn attention to finding new ways of adding value.

Adding value is crucial

Adding value is crucial to accountants who want to thrive in a digital age because financial technology is radically disruptive to traditional accountancy and the developments in artificial intelligence is very likely to replace many job functions in the not-too-distant future.

Cloud based technology is faster, more effective and more accurate than humans. Accountants know the numbers that underlie the strategic planning so focusing on reading the numbers and translating them into tangible, succinct recommendations and advice may prove invaluable.

While data entry is still a part of day-to-day activities, the impact of this digital revolution is likely to affect the role of employees working within accounting firms, so the next generation of accountants to be hired will take on the role of Business Adviser.

Choosing the right technology

From a technology point of view, it’s no secret that part of the problem of a digital transformation is than an accountant needs several different pieces of software for the job, and these don’t always integrate. It’s very important when selecting a piece of software, not fall into the trap of picking the one that works for the current way of working. The modern accountant needs to keep the vision of future working in mind and select software that can evolve with the planned digital transformation.

The digital transformation and the momentous upheaval it brings is offering the accountancy profession a huge level of opportunity (and threat for those who are too slow to adapt). The future is a really exciting place for accountants and their clients as it looks to combine financial expertise with business advice. The end of traditional accountancy is already upon us and now it’s important to be part of the change and not left behind.

Will Farnell, Founder and Director of digital practise Farnell Clarke says: “many mistake digital transformation as being all about technology. In reality, this is far from the truth.  Technology is simply an enabler to delivering enhanced levels of client experience to meet shifting client expectations through a combination of people, process, culture and technology.”

Will set up Farnell Clarke from a client perspective and in 2009 it became one of the first 100% cloud practices in the UK. He will present his keynote seminar, The 10 Elements of The Digital Firm, at Accounting Live in Glasgow this month.

Take part in Accounting Live, November 2018

Make sure you don’t miss Accounting Live, Scotland’s dedicated event for Accounting and Finance professionals this November 21 and 22 at the SEC Glasgow. The two day event is pack with more than 80 exhibitors with demos, offers and advice while the CPD accredited seminar and workshop timetable which will consider all of the challenges and opportunities facing the profession and leave you with a clear roadmap of what you need to do to achieve your digital transformation.

Tickets are free when you register on the website in advance.

Book your Accounting Live tickets today

This blog is one of a series of articles from our commercial partners.
The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of ICAS.


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