Historically, the accounting profession has been protected from massive labor changes. The profession has grown over the years through increased regulations, mergers and firms that provide niche services. However, changes are on the horizon. Artificial intelligence and automation will be major changes within the profession.
As accounting software becomes more sophisticated, the days of pen and paper “number crunching” may be coming to a halt. Much of the routine data entry work that accountants perform could be automated. Better. Cheaper. Faster. That doesn’t mean that accountants won’t be needed. If anything, we will need higher level analytical and soft skills. As an industry, the work will become even more complex. There will be more consulting and advising; less compliance and routine data entry work, because the robots can do that. And a lot of the change has already occurred.
With the ever changing global economic and labor landscape, it’s imperative that accountants keep up with the times. As young CPAs, we will be at the forefront of many of the technological changes that will occur in the near future. As accounting software gets better at its job, accountants need to stay on top of theirs.
Allyse Carter, CPA
Caler, Donten, Levine, Cohen, Porter & Veil, PA