How has Technology Changed the Accounting Industry?

The evolution of technology has changed the accounting profession and some say that access to new software has made the accountant’s job easier. If you are planning on studying to be an accountant in a college or university program, it is important to learn about the field in today’s modern world. Gone are the days where accountants use pens, paper, and calculators to balance the books and verify the ledgers are accurate. If you would like to know some of the ways that accountant software technologies have changed the accounting profession, read on and find out if the field is what you imagined it to be in today’s day and age.

Accountants Have Tools That Reduce the Margin of Error

With word processing tools and specialized accounting software, it is fair to say that technologies have dramatically improved accuracy in the field and reduced the margin of error. While some accountants still use Microsoft Excel for data entry and running ledgers, most companies will buy special software that provides simplified data entry and guarantees ledgers and financial reports are accurate. This is especially beneficial for businesses because errors can lead to tax penalties or uninformed decision makers. A lower margin of error results in more financially stable companies that are better equipped to stay afloat.

A Need for Less Basic Training and More Strategic Training

With the introduction of special software programs, the need for basic accounting training has declined. An accountant who has access to a computer and the right systems can easily perform tax preparation services, statistical analysis and forecast modeling much more efficiently without spending years completing core training. Accountants are no longer the number crunchers that they are pictured to be. Instead, they are professionals with diversified roles who have become part of strategic planning teams. Now, many accountants are giving advice, developing new processes, and performing future forecasts that a computer cannot be trusted to do.

Accountants Need IT Skills in Addition to Other Business Skills

There is a long list of skills that a professional accountant needs to possess before they will land a position with a reputable firm or organization. In addition to being knowledgeable in accounting practices and a skilled communicator, accountants also need be able to apply the processes learned and integrate these processes with IT programs. While there are some professionals who are not highly skilled with the latest Enterprise Resource Planning Systems, all professionals in the field will need to be able to merge accounting and IT.

Technologies are always advancing and according to the American Institute of CPAs, anyone who wants to become a CPA must keep up with emerging technologies. If you have always wanted to work in a field that is often called the “language of business”, it is time to start a degree program. While you do not need to do the same tedious work, attaining some basic skills and advanced skills in the interpretation of financial data is key. Once you are trained in accounting and technology, you will be ready to search for openings to start your career.