Accountants are well justified in wondering about the impact of technology on their industry. Will the net result be better or worse? The same conversation is happening – or should be happening – in every industry.
The internet is bringing about the automation of many tasks through algorithms, massive linked databases and artificial intelligence, or AI. Jobs that these days require a high level of skill may no longer be required tomorrow.
MYOB has released a second report in its Future of Business series ambitiously titled, “Surviving the Singularity”. More discussion about how we use technology is highly necessary. Even if we can’t shape the future we can still prepare ourselves to deal with it.
The topic of sentient AI and the potential threat to humankind (covered by the term “the singularity”) is a philosophical debate that will take years to resolve.
However, MYOB’s CTO Simon Raik-Allen has some reassuring points to make about the future of accountants.
“In a world where so much is digitized and automated, it’s the human factor that people will value the most. The ability to offer the crucial things technology can’t – such as person-to-person interactions, displays of emotion, and shared, interpersonal experiences – will see the creation of new industries,” Raik-Allen says.
This is spot on. Even if compliance becomes a one-button process business owners will always want someone to explain things, to debate new directions and steer them away from disaster. That person should be their accountant.
You can download and read the report on MYOB’s site.