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Traditionally, Accountants have used Management Accounts to uncover stories about the business performance. Not anymore though. With the emergence of Big-data & BI-Business Intelligence tools; there is a paradigm shift towards the use of ‘Realtime data’ collected from various data-streams (Social Media, CRM).

Transformation

E-commerce (IoT)

The e-commerce industry is witnessing an unprecedented shift towards AI enabled solutions. C-suite executives are using Big-data intelligence to make viable business decisions. In particular, to increase their market share, customer retention periods, & repeat buying by offering more tailormade products & services.

Real time user data is being collected via smart devices (Smart Watches [Fitbit], Smart Phones) & is being deployed to develop custom made products & services for the customers.

AI

Accountants, therefore, need to adapt these technological tools if they are to outplay AI/RPA in the future.

AI will definitely automate a key part of repetitive bookkeeping & data gathering activities. One cannot underestimate the human-soft skills e.g. emotional intelligence & performance appraisal by taking into account the exceptional underlying circumstances.

Data Analytics (BI)

Accountants equipped with data-mining & data-analytics skills will stand a good chance to outplay their competitors (data/Robo analysts).

Accountants are expected to be able to guide & coach their clients & employers alike. Not merely prepare the management accounts & calculate ratios based on the historical financial data.

Accountants will have to ensure they are up to date with these advancements to be able to consult with their clients & employers respectively.

Digital Supply Chain

Accountant will have to be agile & adaptable in this decade of transformation if not the Century. Technological advancements are taking place at an unprecedented pace. Whether its IoT, AI, RPA, or Blockchain: innovation is leading us to a whole new paradigm of opportunities.

Accountants will have to transform themselves into Data-Scientists to remain competitive in the 21st Century. There is no room for complacency.