As a follow up to the Automation in Accounting webinar we held last month I thought it might be helpful to put a few of the many great points made on "paper".
It is clear that automation is already here and that more and more repetitive, transactional accounting tasks will be taken care of by robots rather than humans. This will be a great opportunity for accounting and finance professionals to focus on higher value, more analytical tasks that require empathy and communication skills. Rather than be afraid of this change we recommend embracing this change. This does not mean that you need to learn programming, coding or Macros (macros will no longer be required anyway). Key vendors like UiPath, Power BI, Anaplan and Blackline offer either free or very reasonably priced introductory courses. We recommend signing up for courses on UiPath Academy as a great starting point and becoming familiar with RPA as a concept.
Future of Jobs
As the World Economic Forum has indicated in its future of jobs report key skills for jobs of the future will be problem solving and self management. As an accounting and finance professional you will need to have your core knowledge and core competencies but the key skill will be providing solutions to the business. Design thinking will become more and more important to ensure that users are being given what they really need. Accounting and FP&A as functions will become more integrated as there will be less need for transactional accounting jobs due to automation. Accounting and finance professionals will need to be adept at dealing with data as the amount and speed of data will increase every year. The world will continue to be volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous and you will need to be ready to embrace change and not fear it.