Accounting Tasks Heading For Automation

16 Oct 2019 | 12.31 pm

Accounting Tasks Heading For Automation

CIMA has warned that most finance professionals are not evolving their skillsets fast enough to cope with digital change

16 Oct 2019 | 12.31 pm

The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants has warned that most finance professionals are not evolving their skillsets fast enough to stay up with the impact of new and emerging digital technologies.

A gathering of the global accountancy organisation in Dublin was told that 61% of finance professionals expect that a fifth of finance tasks will be automated within three years. Over half have already experienced a move towards automating processes, but that hindsight reports still dominate in financial reporting.

The findings in CIMA’s report, Re-Inventing Finance For A Digital World, emerged from a survey of 5,500 finance professionals globally, a majority of whom said that the skills needed by their teams must change significantly over the next three years as new technologies take over traditional tasks.

Expertise in areas such as data analytics, cyber risk management and business models will facilitate the shift, CIMA claims. In addition, there will be a need for shifts in mindset to constantly learn, unlearn and relearn new skills to deal with complexity and with operating in an increasingly agile environment.

CIMA Ireland chief Ciaran Phelan said: “Technical accounting knowledge is no longer sufficient for finance professionals to succeed. They now need to learn and leverage new digital capabilities and become business influencers, who provide foresight to aid the corporate decision-making process and deliver value across their organisation.”

Digital Mindset Pack

Responding to the report’s findings, CIMA has created new resources for its members, including a new professional qualification, a CGMA competency framework, and what it calls a ‘digital mindset pack’ aimed at empowering management accountants “to rise up to the challenge of the digital age”.

The new professional qualification focuses on digital finance, including cybersecurity threats in its risk mitigation element, while the competency framework adds and integrates digital skills to the four existing core knowledge areas of technical, business, leadership and people skills.

The digital mindset package looks to enhance enhance competencies and skills through a free professional development bundle based on automation, blockchain, cybersecurity, data analytics, and ethics.

There’s more information on the packages and on the pivot to digital skills on CIMA’s website here.

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