Letter: For accountants, AI is like spreadsheets in the 1980s

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Letter: For accountants, AI is like spreadsheets in the 1980s

As an accounting professor, I concur that accountants and auditors are exposed to artificial intelligence (“Accountants/AI: Excel jobs excised”, Lex, April 10). Yet, I’m also quite excited by how much AI has the potential to transform the accounting industry. While some may worry that AI will disrupt the profession, it’s crucial to realize that this also offers accountants an opportunity to transform their roles and provide even more value to their clients.

Like spreadsheets changed the industry in the 1980s, AI will give accountants new opportunities to automate operations, increase accuracy, and analyze data more effectively. This means that accountants will have more time to concentrate on strategic analytics and decision-making instead of spending countless hours on repetitive operations.

Also, AI will make it easier for accountants to make sense of vast amounts of hitherto unmanageable data. Accounting professionals will be able to spot trends and patterns that would have gone undiscovered without AI, thanks to AI’s ability to handle enormous amounts of information rapidly and precisely. As a result, they will be able to give their clients advice that is even more valued and well informed, ultimately resulting in better decision-making and better business results.

Of course, this transition will call for new skill sets, with machine learning and accounting analytics at the forefront. Nevertheless, this is an excellent chance for the upcoming generation of accountants to upgrade their skills and gain these critical new abilities—and for higher education institutions to prepare these future accountants. They will be at the forefront of this revolution, able to use AI to assist their clients or employers in navigating the constantly changing business environment.

In conclusion, there is no disputing AI’s influence on the accounting industry. But rather than being afraid of this change, we ought to welcome it as a chance to advance and develop. Accounting professionals will be able to operate more efficiently and offer their clients even more helpful advice thanks to AI. Being in this line of work at this time is exciting, and I’m looking forward to what lies ahead.

Martin Mulyadi
Associate Professor of Accounting
Shenandoah University
Winchester, VA

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