As an accounting and finance student of KNUST, I constantly undertake research to discover real facts in my field of study.
The Real Fact
It's now obvious that the whole world is going digital. Technology is advancing at the fastest rate than ever before, especially in this period of the Covid-19 pandemic. Internet of Things (IoT) has been on the rise sharply. Lots of jobs are now executed and undertaken online. Schools and universities are adopting online studies; transactions (sales and purchases) are carried out via online, and many more. I mean literally everything is being affected by technology. The field of accounting is no exception. Accounting is undeniably changing in a fast-paced technological environment, largely due to the emergence of intelligence technology, including machine learning, and Artificial Intelligence (AI). But does this mean that accountants will be taken over by robots or machines? The simple answer is certainly No.
Continue with me and let me show you how the accounting profession is changing in response to technological advancement and the way forward.
The Cloud System
Quite a number of years now, the cloud system has been adopted by most firms and industries because of it's efficient and accessible nature. Accounting firms are now adopting the cloud system where transactions can be quickly recorded and stored over the net with much transparency and reliability to users. This is made possible by intelligent technologies such as internet of things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning among others. This has made recording and processing of financial transactions more efficient and readily accessible to all users. The cloud system is increasing so fast not only in the business field but all fields and sectors.
Another new advanced technology taking over almost all the repetitive tasks of Accountants. The Blockchain is a computer-based system that makes use of crypto currency, thereby facilitating user-to-user networks. It is gaining foot in the field of accounting as it is bringing a new type of ledger—one that can be perpetually updated and verified without any form of alteration and corruption. It is also gaining the interest of accountants because it enables users to access ledgers in real-time, as well as creating smart contracts. Blockchain also comes with high level of security and transparency. Accountants who prefer Blockchain must be familiar with software programs and how to set up transaction transfer for ledgers.
Automation of Accounting Tasks
Automation is now the norm of the day. In the field of accounting, repetitive tasks such as auditing, tax preparation, payroll preparation are gradually automated and are expected to be completed taken over by automation within a short period of time. Examples of softwares that have facilitated accounting automation include OneUp, Xero, Intuit, Sage, QuickBooks, among others. These softwares have facilitated data entry and processing works using machine learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies in bookkeeping. Automation is thus becoming a major apect of accountancy more sharply than ever before. Automation has really changed the accounting job description and specifications.
So Will Accountants Lose Their Job And Become Redundant?
As confirmed earlier, the answer to this question simply remains no. Accountants cannot and would not be taken over by robots. Technology cannot render accountants redundant over time. Instead, it will empower and challenge accountants to be effective analysts and advisors, rather than being the usual number crunchers. The hardest tasks to be automated in the field of accounting are those that apply specialized expertise to decision-making and planning. Automation has taken over the repetitive tasks leaving the analytical and managerial tasks to humans. This is the new work of accountants now and in the years to come. It's therefore highly imperative and important for accountants and accounting students to prepare for the future by gaining necessary skills to perform analytical, managerial and administrative tasks that cannot be done by automation and future technology.
Remember, technology will not slow down, but will continue to increase even exponentially. The ever-increasing technology will not take over accountants, but will definitely change the nature of the job.
Accounting students must thus endeavor to learn extensively and channel their study of the programme towards the direction of the new norm of accounting. With this, our future as accountants is readily assured.
Accounting job seekers and graduates must also upgrade their knowledge in this regard, even as they search for jobs. May we all be great.
Post any question in the comments section down below for improving future articles.
Technology cannot make accountants redundant but will definitely change the nature of the job.
— Ernest Festus Awudey
© 2020 Ernest Festus Awudey
Ernest Festus Awudey (author) from Ho, Ghana. on August 19, 2020:
Thanks Bismark. I'm inspired by your comment.
KWADZOKPO BISMARK on August 19, 2020:
Great job! Keep it up.