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The robots are here

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Managing Partners are not the most technologically progressive leaders in the business world. Their role in ensuring that everything in their firm is in order makes them averse to changes in the processes, especially when there is already one in place.

Thus, it is not surprising that there are Managing Partners who are not particularly warm with the thought of robotic process automation (RPA) in accounting. This innovation brings in too many changes that it can be too suspicious for them.

Here are some reasons why you need to reconsider:

1. Managing Partners must see benefits beyond overhead cost reduction

Here’s a common misconception when we think about robotic accounting:

Automation = lower overhead costs.

While there is some truth in this statement, robotic accounting does not automatically enable you to decimate the number of your employees by half. A better use of the technology is to allow it to take over time-consuming and repetitive tasks from your employees.

This will allow you to use the capabilities and skills of your employees too much more valuable roles that involve human intuition such as leadership, decision-making, Consultancy and in-depth analysis.

1. RPA allows for faster regulatory satisfaction

Most systems are expected to come with an audit integral trail, that, as the name suggests, enables you to manage transactions and keep an audit trail of what you are doing at the same time.

Just like what Paul Mills of EY stated in a report published by the ACCA, this feature may even become mandatory as he knows of some financial services firms that were able to get quick sign-offs from regulators using automated processes

2. RPA allows for fast and accurate management decisions.

RPA will allow a Managing Partner to optimize your key performance indicators and consolidate them automatically, thereby giving him/her more accurate data in less time, from which important management decisions can be based.

3. Robotic Accounting reduces your operational risks.

As processes become automated, robotic accounting ensures that you do not miss important payment deadlines, crucial errors, and avoid penalties altogether.

Robotic process automation also allows you to set up the check and balance systems to ensure that data, transactions, and other processes that you automate abide by important regulations and organizational quality assurance policies.

4. Your Clients

If RPA is good for you, it must also be an opportunity to talk to some of your Key Clients about.  This will lead to additional fee earning opportunities and a legitimate reason for you to add real value to your client’s business.

Progressive Expert Comment

Robotic Process Automation is here, Progressive Accountancy Firms are already embracing the changes and building on the service offerings to their clients.  I would urge all Managing Partners to consider how they would implement these changes and build new Consultancy based services for their clients.

Clients now, are far more knowledgeable and demanding, they require Accountants that are forward thinking and able to assist them in the development of their company’s and not just do the numbers.

Progressive Accountants will benefit from greater fee earning opportunities and greater satisfaction from developing and growing their clients’ businesses.

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Events, PR, and Marketing Executive at The Samuel James Group, Philip has a degree in Journalism from the University of Salford and holds an MSc in Marketing from Lancaster University, Philip has also worked at BBC Radio Lancashire, Clitheroe Football Club and Accrington Stanley Football Club.