Over the past two years, we’ve been bombarded with negative news story after negative news story, doomscrolling ourselves into a frenzy. Today, we want to change gear by focusing on some much-needed positivity.
Although it was an extremely challenging period, the pandemic sparked a new wave of potential and opportunity for accountants. As a result, the accounting industry has evolved dramatically over the past year — for the better.
Continue reading to explore some good news from across the accounting industry and learn more about CRESCO Accounting — one of our members — to explore how they’ve navigated turbulent times to emerge stronger on the other side.
The pandemic made the need for accountants abundantly clear. From navigating loans and grants to offering stellar advice on risks and cost-saving measures, accountants have been a lifeline for many businesses facing the stress of the health and financial crisis.
Research conducted by Vacancysoft in partnership with Morgan McKinley shows that demand for UK tax accountants is at its highest in over two years. This upwards trend in demand for accountants is a ray of hope in a gloomy period, particularly for those new to the profession who may be feeling discouraged.
For many professionals, the pandemic provided an opportunity to enhance skills to safeguard their profession — and the same is true for accountants. 75% of accountants used the pandemic to improve their job skills to help their career advancement.
According to a study conducted by PWC, 40% of workers improved their digital skills throughout lockdown, and the same participants claim that they’ll continue to embrace training and skill development in the future. Additionally, 77% of respondents stated that they were ready to learn new skills, and 80% are now confident they can adapt to new technologies.
In a profession that is widely considered slow to embrace digital technologies, this development is a huge step forward for the accounting industry as a whole. By making the most out of a bad situation, accountants will be better prepared for the future — no matter what gets thrown their way.
In the same vein, the pandemic has sped up many accounting firms’ digital transformation journeys by launching CPAs into a world of remote working and virtual meetings. On one hand, the pandemic spread negativity to every corner of the world; on the other,it was a catalyst for digital transformation and automation.
Accountancy has been thrust into the 21st century with the help of technology. Now accountants can leverage automated tools to provide better customer service, run a more cost-efficient firm and benefit from an engaged, productive workforce.
CRESCO, an INAA member, is just one business that has fully embraced digital transformation. Find out more below.
CRESCO Accounting is an accounting and auditing firm with offices in the United Arab Emirates, Seychelles and the Philippines, catering to all sizes of companies — from small and medium enterprises to large conglomerates.
As with most INAA members, CRESCO provides accounting services such as auditing, risk assurance, company liquidation, payroll services and much more.
When the coronavirus pandemic hit, CRESCO Accounting went online. The COVID-19 crisis was a disruptive period for many firms, but CRESCO had already embarked on a forward-thinking digital transformation journey, making the transition to virtual work smoother.
The sudden onset of the pandemic simply accelerated CRESCO’s inevitable adoption of new technologies. Armed with the knowledge of what the future of accounting would look like, the firm was able to implement automation and technologies in the shortest time possible.
Implementing technology can be a controversial subject for some professionals in the accounting industry, mainly because technology is misconstrued as a replacement for human efforts.
However, CRESCO Accounting’s story is just one example of how firms can embrace technology to enhance their expert’s work. Instead of fearing the consequences of automation, it’s vital to highlight that it’s simply a tool to empower financial experts to provide better customer service at a lower cost.
The Managing Director of CRESCO Accounting, Maricar Gonzaga, explains that by automating processes within the business, CRESCO Accounting is better equipped to handle any unforeseen circumstances due to slashed operating costs. When clients were unavoidably hit by the financial crisis brought about by the pandemic, CRESCO had the capacity to absorb late payments better due to the savings made on automating repetitive, time-intensive manual tasks.
CRESCO Accounting also took their digital transformation one step further by investing in IT infrastructure. The firm’s innovation — including payroll software — is therefore home grown by their team of developers, providing CRESCO with the freedom to meet clients’ requirements and save money in-house.
Maricar had a simple piece of advice for other INAA members: be open to change.
Embracing technology doesn’t mean a robot does everything, nor does it diminish the value of an accountant’s work. Instead, it enables accountants to put their clients first to deliver high-quality service. Technology frees up accountants’ resources so they can spend more time supporting their clients through turbulent financial periods.
For example, the experts at CRESCO Accounting use an AI solution to capture invoices instead of manually entering data into a spreadsheet. However, an accountant is still in control of the process. The solution will require an accountant to check and approve or amend the data.
Automating tedious tasks like data entry can boost employee engagement by enabling people to invest time in higher-value tasks. A win-win for both CPAs and their clients.
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