- February 8, 2020
- Posted by: Jo Johnston
- Categories: Accounting, Business Continuity, Business Technology, Culture, Disruption, Leadership, Operations, Planning
Traditional accounting and business was all about the number crunching and keeping business records. Now it has transformed into a skilled, data-driven analytical industry that helps predict the best way to forge forward towards entrepreneurial goals. An accountant that strictly sticks to figure-keeping is a mode of the past.
Now, accountants are used by businesses as a source of insights to help drive their growth and goals into reality. This type of analysis was normally reserved for Chartered Accountants or highly qualified Corporate Accountants. Many Small and Medium Businesses cannot afford full-time specialists like this opting for Bookkeepers and Tax Agents. Often these roles were separated from each other and had a lot of overlap and redoing resulting is a waste of money, where they thought they were saving. Businesses like Collappor8 are saving their customers time, money by offering an all-in-one accounting and business service. A One-Stop-Shop for business.
Our focus is on strategy with accountants, economists and other degree qualified professionals working together. For us, bookkeeping and accounting are simply inputs – a means to an end. Accounting and Business are very much one of the same when looking to the future.
Technology lends a strong hand in this changed direction of accounting history. Not only does technology save time, but processes like Cloud-Accounting, the growth of Big Data, predictive analytics and the development of AI also helps empower accountants to become more efficient and accurate in their business analysis. If they know to take advantage of its existence. As a time-based industry, it would stand to reason that there is a lot of time saved using machine learning – so the accounting budget is best investing in strategy and completing projects.
As La Fontaine, Director of Commercial Finance (Asia Pacific and India) at UiPath advocates:
“a great accountant empowers businesses to respond to shifts in the real world”.
As a direct witness of the rapid rise of technology in the 2000s, she watched how the unending tech-boom disrupted well-cemented business models, but also generated chances for digital transformation. She says technological factors such as Big Data and AI is transforming an accountant’s role by accelerating the speed and accuracy of financial decisions that professionals have always made. Accountants have always been data scientists, gathering, collating, organising, reporting and interpreting business data.
The emergence of technology has only allowed accountants to access larger volumes of more various data, alongside growing processing power that collates and analyses the data in preparation for interpretation. Synthesising large amounts of data allow better processing of patterns and anomalies, which only empowers more accuracy when providing reports.
Human interpretation is a unique selling proposition for Collappor8 because we have financial accountant, management accountants, economists and CFO’s with extensive experience now offering affordable solutions to Small and medium business. A One-Stop-Shop for business problem-solving!
Some are concerned about the development of data-driven AI in industries such as accounting and business. Would accountants be replaced, and end the profession and all like it? However, that may not be the case. AI and machine learning algorithms are experts at collating data and providing patterns and graphs that they fail to interpret in a humane, causational way that is effective to business planning.
In the past, accountants had to rely on personal hunches to decide which financial paths should be followed. Now, data and statistical analysis is the new bulwark to support financial decisions, and the issue of predictability has left human instinct for data-driven processes instead, increasing accuracy in financial decisions. There is great optimism that people and AI can work together to bring out the best of each other in the future of the industry.
Additionally, accountants are not a purely reactive industry anymore. Informational technology has enabled proactive real-time reactions to create faster decisions that then steer the business. Instead of a strong focus on book-keeping and auditing, business accountants are now focused on the future; contributing their financial knowledge towards streamlining sustainable business goals. Financial Accountants are increasing having to shift their focus toward management accounting and fusing both disciplines for better interconnectivity between accounting and business.
Ask your accountant how to perform a stock take and see if they have any interest in non-financial indicators for measuring the fitness of your business.
Accounting and Business
Accountants are not the only one affected by the rapid rise of technology. Robotics process automation also allows organisations to dramatically transform how they operate. Customer and employee experiences can become more systemised and personal with automated processes to help process applications, emails, and subscriptions. And within industries with high manual processes and high volumes of data, such as legal, finance, manufacturing and banking, massive transformations have been taking place.
Cutting out the time-sinks in manual labour, technology unlocks the true value of your human resources and organisation. People can achieve meaningful work faster, better, and more efficiently than ever before.
How we do business will definitely change, La Fontaine says. In the future, there may be a high probability that software robots, artificial intelligence and people will all be working alongside each other to gain the best results. Technology has unlocked the true potential of the accounting industry and has allowed people to overcome tedious and repetitive tasks like data entry and communications.
Now, workers can move towards more meaningful, creative and strategic work, unlocking the potential in not only business but your everyday employee’s work-life as well.
If your accountants are not tech-savvy, you are probably missing out. If they can’t evolve because they’re stuck in their ways, how can they ask you to do what they cannot? They probably won’t. Think of moving, you will save money because of time, and you can reinvest it in better insights and recommendations.