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The Changing Role and Skills of Accountants

Posted by Alexander Hagerup on Aug 7, 2019 8:18:00 AM
Alexander Hagerup
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The Changing Role and Skills of Accountants

How is the role of the accountant changing? And what does this mean for what the accountant, bookkeeper, controller, or virtual CFO does on a regular basis?

The following is an excerpt from our webinar, “Automating Accounts Payable (AP): How Ignite Spot Accounting Services Automates AP, Removes Human Error, and Improves Client Services.”

The comments below are summarized from my interview during the webinar with our featured guest, Dan Luthi of Ignite Spot Accounting Services:

How are skills changing? How are job descriptions changing? How is communication changing with employees and with prospective employees during the hiring process?

Learning Accounting Technology in College

This relates to something that’s on the cusp of an issue we have in the United States specifically. It relates to an issue we have with the current educational system. From a higher education standpoint, our current educational system in the United States doesn’t focus on technology nearly as much as it should.

It’s not advancing students coming out of college as much as it should, nor is it preparing people who are coming into the workforce. While the core value when studying accounting is focused on debits and credits, software and technology is a huge part of an accountant’s everyday life. 

It’s hugely important that accountants understand how they can use technology to grow their businesses. When considering job candidates, while having some type of accounting experience is essential, it’s critical that you also consider candidates that have the knowledge or the ability to utilize technology tools and resources to help the business grow.  

Some of the brightest employees didn’t start in bookkeeping in their first accounting industry job. They had skills, knowledge, and experience in different areas. Because of that, we were able to connect with them in different ways. Some were developers in previous positions, and some had experience in hospitality, which was a huge help with being able to communicate easily with clients.

So while accounting is the core focus, it makes good business sense for staff members to have diverse backgrounds and different areas of knowledge that help them perform better in their current roles. 

Tech-Savvy Accountants

Being tech-savvy is becoming an essential skill. In some situations, this can be as simple as knowing how to use Gmail, how to write a good email, knowing how to do a proper search in a web browser, and working with different features and functions with software programs. This can even be implemented right into the recruitment process by starting with a virtual interview. Can the job candidate log on to the meeting and webcam without any difficulty? Online testing can be used in a recruitment process to test how tech-savvy the job candidate is.

How do you see the job role and skills changing for the accountants in your firm? Tell us your thoughts in the section for comments below.

To learn how Ignite Spot Accounting Services automates AP, removes human error, and improves client services, watch the webinar recording on “Automating Accounts Payable (AP).”

Automating Accounts Payable (AP) | How Ignite Spot Accounting Services Automates AP, Removes Human Error, and Improves Client Services

Topics: Accounting

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