Data analytics, machine learning, artificial intelligence, blockchain, robotic process automation–these are just some of the tech trends that will continue to perforate the accounting sphere in 2020, according to a recent report by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA).
The report highlights that finance and accounting professionals are increasingly implementing big data, and will continue to do so in the future. Respondents of the report included IMA members, including 170 responses from CFOs and other management accountants. Many of the surveyed CFOs and management accountants are predicting big changes for their businesses in 2020.
According to the report, four key elements must be present for an organization to be data-driven: quality data, data-savvy people, state-of-the-art tools, and a supportive organizational culture.
Management accountants are leveraging data science and analytics to improve their data governance and analysis capabilities. These are necessary skills that are increasingly expected from accountants; staying ahead of the tech curve is a necessity to remain competitive in the job market.
The report predicts that the number of companies deploying big data is expected to double in the near future. It identifies some considerations to help companies and accountants implement big data initiatives, such as:
- Starting simple while first implementing big data
- Getting buy-in at the executive and departmental levels for implementation of more robust data and analytics
- Building quality infrastructure to ensure data integrity
The IMA is developing a Data Analytics and Visualization Foundational Certificate for continuing tech education to help accountants stay competitive. Seeking out tools such as these is paramount for accounting job security. As data visualization becomes a necessary part of many accountants’ jobs, the management accountant is expected to serve as a bridge between data scientists and management. A full grasp of tech and analytics is increasingly necessary.
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