Everyone is talking about Artificial Intelligence (AI) these days, and for good reason—AI is set to disrupt just about every industry. AI is very much a mixed blessing; some people welcome it for freeing humans from boring, repetitive work, and others fear it for having the potential to send millions of humans into unemployment, and possibly even as an existential threat to humanity.
AI is going to have a huge impact in the accounting world, too. According to Forbes, “If you are worried that technology will make your employees obsolete, consider that one expert predicted that AI could improve productivity for your employees and company by 40%.”
AI won’t come in and take over your whole business and force you to fire all your employees; introducing AI to your business means putting some AI in place to take over repetitive tasks like data entry and sorting through large amounts of data (where AI really shines), which would free up staff to do things that require human creativity and critical thinking. An excellent example of the marriage between AI and accountants is AI crunching vast amounts of data to produce a spectacular report, and the accountant having the time to do a detailed analysis of these numbers.
Again, per Forbes,
While AI is a superb tool, it isn’t something that can take the place of a real person in all tasks. There are just some things that a human can do better — like getting to know clients’ needs and plans for the future and crafting personalized financial analysis to help them get there. Let AI take care of the busy work for you, then use the results to create a road map for clients that will help them understand their financial reports.
AI is likely to change how accounting firms work, though. As more clients are able to handle repetitive, data entry-type work themselves, accounting firms can pivot to managing data, seeing trends, and directing clients in moving forward successfully.
Per Business.com, “AI and automation may change accountant job functions. The need for accountants won’t disappear. However, their job functions will likely evolve. For example, a traditional bookkeeper will become more of an information systems manager—someone who helps clients feel in control of their data and cash flow management.”
Contact Shaw & Associates Chartered Accountants for accounting help you can count on. One complimentary meeting with us will put you and your business on a more profitable and positive path.