10 biggest trends in accounting and finance

Accounting Trends

10 Biggest Accounting Trends in Tech

Essential and evolving technologies have had a huge impact on the finance and accounting industry, especially during the last few years. New accounting trends have arisen – developments and reactions to the factors that shape the financial world.

As managed IT experts, we understand one of the best ways to advance your career in the competitive finance industry is to understand and implement technological trends as they arise.

Don’t worry: It’s not as overwhelming as it seems. Here we highlight the 10 most important accounting trends in technology and finance.

1. Robotic Process Automation

Robotic process automation (RPA) has become more convenient than ever thanks to improvements in technology and access to cloud-based software. It saves a great deal of time on tasks like reconciliations, data entry and routine account updates, as well as cutting down process times for audits and contracts to weeks instead of months.

It’s a trend that only continues to go upward, with the global RPA market projected to reach $13.39 billion by 2030.

One of the most significant advantages of RPA is the ability to leverage data for decision-making purposes. It’s not just about saving time. It’s about making smarter decisions quickly, improving productivity, accuracy and customer service for accountants and finance workers.

2. Data Analytics

Data analytics is being used to track and understand trends in business performance, spot operational risks and develop better risk management strategies. The technology simplifies specialized accounting tasks, and as a result, the demand for data analytics is projected to increase significantly. According to an article in Forbes, “the data analytics market is growing at a compound annual rate of nearly 30 percent” for 2023.

A big part of the transformation is the way that data analytics can be used to automate manual processes and present financial performance in a different light for better actionable results – which is the key to making financial decisions.

3. Cloud Computing

As an accounting trend and across other industries as well, cloud computing isn’t going away anytime soon. In fact, the global market share of the top cloud infrastructure service providers reached $63 billion in Q1 2023.

The move to cloud computing gives accounting and finance professionals access to continuous updates, which allows them to analyze data and make decisions based on instant, cutting-edge information.

The cloud enables finance and accounting institutions to:

  • Save money.
  • Secure customer data.
  • Manage sales.
  • Have better security.
  • Have more efficient networking.
  • Track supplies.
  • Enjoy greater flexibility in using computing resources.
  • Save space by moving data to the cloud.

4. Blockchain Technology

Blockchain technology is the new frontier in digital transactions and data management. It’s a digital ledger that automatically records and verifies each transaction across a decentralized network of computers, thus protecting from cyberattacks.

It also enables accounting and finance firms to share database retention infrastructure; rather than maintaining and reconciling records of the same transactions in separate, privately controlled databases, all parties can record in a shared ledger.

Blockchain is leading to new opportunities and services as firms continue to evolve; the demand for blockchain skills has grown exponentially. From Demandsage, “with a compound annual growth rate of 56.3 percent, the blockchain industry will be worth $163.83 billion by 2029.” 

If you’re interested in learning more about the accounting trends concerning blockchain technology, check out our IT consulting services.

5. Artificial Intelligence

Accountants are increasingly using artificial intelligence (AI) to automate repetitive tasks. It frees their time to focus on higher impact and higher value activities. Using AI – often in conjunction with RPA – eliminates confusion and reduces human error. 

AI-powered predictive analytics are also being utilized to forecast cash flow patterns, identify the best ways to invest capital and more accurately analyze investments.

More companies are predicted to invest in these emerging solutions shortly, if they haven’t done so already. A 2023 Statista survey reported “46 percent of the respondents indicated improved customer experience thanks to AI.”

6. Adaptive Cyber Security

It should come as no surprise that cybercriminals frequently target accounting firms and the finance industry. Data breaches are a bigger risk than ever with successful attacks leading to identity or financial theft or extortion.

Today’s finance professionals need to be on top of all the accounting trends and the latest developments in cyber security. Identifying critical areas of risk, developing plans to address them and communicating with coworkers and clients regularly are critical in the digital age.

Training in recognizing risks like potentially harmful emails and data anomalies is necessary when looking for possible attacks. And, with cybercrime projected to cost $10.5 trillion globally by 2025, cyber security isn’t something you should put on the back burner.

7. Big Data

Finance firms must handle and analyze vast amounts of structured and unstructured data every day. Big data projects can change the way finance professionals plan and analyze their day-to-day tasks, as well as anticipate customer behavior and create financial strategies. 

Structured data is key to providing decision-making insights. A full 82 percent of finance companies plan to increase their Big Data analytics budgets in the next three years.

When working in conjunction with AI and RPA, big data can be used to analyze processes, review performance and make future predictions – saving accountants a lot of leg work. This is accomplished by integrating different sets of data from various sources.

8. Remote Working

The trend of remote working, which increased to never-before-seen numbers during the COVID-19 pandemic, has changed the way finance and accounting firms operate. Online communication and collaboration have become the foremost priorities, along with enhanced cyber security tools for personal digital devices.

However, the shift to remote working has been a great advantage for financial workers, increasing the transactional processes between accountants and customers, which in turn has had significant implications for service assurance and customer loyalty. A Boundless survey indicated that 31.01 percent of respondents in the financial sector want to work exclusively from home or remotely, so it’s something you should consider for your organization if you haven’t already.

9. Outsourcing

Many businesses outsource to save money. In fact, it’s estimated that 300,000 positions are outsourced every year. Outsourcing allows companies to fill skill gaps for certain projects only when required, offer a wider range of services, take on new customers and reduce expenses.

According to Grandview Research, the global business process outsourcing market is expected to reach $525 billion by 2030, and the financial services, IT and telecommunications industries are projected to be the primary drivers of that change.

Outsourcing provides flexibility in responding to the market, as well as dealing with revenue earned. It also saves companies on training staff or spending on expensive, specialized accounting software.

10. Internet of Things

From large financial institutions to small start-ups, all have found new ways to use internet of things (IoT) data. Use of IoT devices saves time and money by gathering and transferring data, as well as improving customer experience and detecting suspicious activity.

FinanceOnline projects over 25 billion IoT-connected devices will be in use worldwide within the next six years.

Companies can use IoT to gather customer data and analyze it to predict their customers’ needs. With continuous data gathering, services can be rendered almost instantly, drastically reducing waiting time for customers and freeing up time for finance agents to focus on more pressing tasks.

Accounting Trends: Find Your Technological Finance Partners

Keeping up with and implementing technical advancements can be overwhelming, but we have you covered. Talk with an expert at Merit Technologies today and discover exactly how your firm can benefit and grow from the latest accounting trends. 

And, if you already have an internal IT team, consider augmenting their expertise with a co-managed approach.

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