The accounting profession is thousands of years old and was common in all ancient civilizations that used money or various exchange currencies. Maybe this is what contributes to the general opinion that accounting is a safe and stable career path, with little stress over the possibility of losing jobs. However, the world is changing rapidly and all industries are getting disrupted by technology and globalization. What does this mean for accountants? What will the future of accounting look like? Here are some aspects to consider.
If you’re putting effort and time into becoming a cpa, the prospect of getting replaced as a professional by a software tool is daunting, but can it really happen? The reality is that in the foreseeable future, it’s highly likely that technology won’t be able to replace human accountants, but it will definitely change how they work. The development of new accounting software or other technological business tools is something to be excited about however, as it will improve efficiency and make the job easier.
The fast progress in machine learning and artificial intelligence will make some administrative-accounting roles obsolete, but that does not mean that the entire profession is at risk of becoming irrelevant. Combining soft skills with additional specializations, an accountant provides value that no technology can replicate. High-level positions that require a lot of decision-making and interpersonal skills like CFO or VP are here to stay.
Since many entry-level accounting jobs will be taken over by technology, young accountants will have to start with a mid-level job. But in order to compensate for their lack of experience, they will need to show their expertise through an advanced diploma. It’s likely that a master’s degree will become an essential requirement among employers.
Having to study for an advanced degree does not necessarily have to be an inconvenience. It will give accountants a better grasp of their field so they can start their career with a higher salary and enjoy plenty of opportunities for further growth. In addition, they can use the degree as a take-off for a more niche specialization to make themselves indispensable to employers.
Even if we were to accept that technology can replace most accounting jobs, computers are not perfect and tech errors can cause a lot of harm. This means that no matter how developed accounting technology will become in the future, there’s still going to be a stringent need for skilled accountants able to supervise the output and make up for tech deficiencies.
Accountants might need more technical skills in the future to interpret and check the accuracy of tech solutions. They will be asked to identify and fix anomalies and provide input in soft-skills areas that computers are unable to cover. A good accountant will also need to develop strong analytical and problem-solving skills to interact with intelligent machines. And, last but not least, there must be someone to communicate with clients and interpret the data for them.
Nobody wants to train in a career that might get dissolved in a decade or two. If accountancy is your call, there’s nothing to worry about. Your job will be safe.