Will 99% of accountants be replaced by a computer within 20 years?


The University of Oxford says that, in its extensive study of the probability of compensation. 702 different jobs will be replaced by a computer in the next 20 years. Routine work when transferring and copying accounting data, its sorting and processing will be replaced by new technologies. The accounting profession will be more challenging and interesting. What will remain is only the work intensive on creativity, flexibility and adaptability. Our beautiful profession has an opportunity before itself, an opportunity that will be difficult to use. The accounting profession will require additional knowledge that will free us from routine. For those who will manage this development, the profession will be even more attractive.

The industry is intensively progressing in thoughts that are hidden under the term “Industry 4.0”. In our field, it is necessary to monitor current developments, which are now accelerating.

Since the 1st of July 2016, the regulation EU eIDAS has come into force, it will increase the security and robustness of automatic electronic communications in the European Union. In connection with the obligatory filing of the VAT control report, i.e. a list of individual documents and their details, the QR code has been adjusted and allows the easy reading of most of the essential requirements of the accounting information.

Another requirement and impulse to the acquisition of new technologies and their online capabilities, will be the electronic records of sales introduced in the Czech Republic as of December 2016. This almost eliminates the possibility of manually processing a document. Processing a document manually will become considerably more inefficient.

These are just partial steps, they are, however, accelerating the replacement of jobs by computers faster than the creation of new jobs in other sectors. In Finland and the USA, experiments with monthly income without performing any work. are already underway Therefore, we must closely follow the ongoing changes and do not see them as a threat but as an opportunity for the accounting and advisory professions and also for you – our customers.

We can expect further legal changes, such as: The “Act on the modernisation of the process of taxation” or the outputs of the European Multi Stakeholder Forum on Electronic Invoicing are currently being discussed in Germany. In German-speaking countries, a format that is consistent with the above mentioned work of the EU forum becomes a standard – it is called the ZUGFeRD format (a PDF/A-3 containing accounting data in XML format). This format can be taken over in other countries also. Let us hope that there will not be a complication with different formats and that we will not be inventing something already invented. Thanks to this standard we also eliminate the Optical Character Recognition (further OCR) reading of scanned or received documents.

It will be more advantageous, especially for medium-sized companies, to use external accounting experts, instead of employing their own, because those who will completely master new trends will not be many, and their price will rise. Likewise, customers will not need to bother with the acquisition of new technology and these worries will be transferred to their subcontractors of services. These will be connected with their clients in real time much more and will prepare valuable information for their business for them.

The technology for computer readable data, automated workflow that, without human intervention, flawlessly archive, monitor, record and prepare transfer orders for confirmation already exist. Now it will be about their mental mastery, efficient installation and communication between customers. Based on our experience, this communication between customers and its correct set-up and management in order to change the existing mutual communication to a fully digital communication is a prerequisite for further progress.

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