3 Must-have Skills for the 21st Century Accountant
Accounting is an ever-improving profession. Accountants now do so much more than crunching numbers; the focus is gradually shifting towards analytics, consultation and process improvements. Accountants and finance professionals with such great skills are exceptional, highly recognized and on popular demand in the industry. Therefore, what are the skills needed to become the heart of an organization’s innovation? What are the major skills that will set you apart in the industry? This article reveals 3 “must haves” skills that can help accountants exceed expectations, becoming the eye of the organizations at which they work.
Think “Data” and “Analytics”
Businesses seek much more than a well-read information, they seek relevant information that can solve problems. Accountants and finance professionals who do much more than reporting information but also has the ability to select which information solves a business pain point are strategic assets. 21st century accounting and finance teams must be able to turn financial data into actionable insights and recommendations for key decision makers. This involves developing and applying top-notch critical thinking skills on financial information.
Strong Verbal and Oral Skills
The most important use of data is to communicate meaningful information. Accountants are often presented to communicate with large, small business groups and individuals. The accountant of today won’t just know why data looks like it does; he/she’ll also has analytical skills to convey those insights to decision makers. The major skill set of a great communication is storytelling, eye contact, credibility, active listening, pacing, clear visuals, simplified answers, friendliness, confidence and feedback.
According to Mazi Nnamdi Okwuadigbo, the 55th president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria“ advances in technology are reshaping business models and we need to equip ourselves as chartered accountants on the disruption that is bound to occur with developments in artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning, and block chain technology”.
Besides, accounting professionals can accomplish much more in much less time in this era of technology. The sooner you get the numbers, the more time your company has to create strategies about what can be done with the numbers. Accounting software as a service solutions such as BMAC can provide you data from various sources, consolidate, and merge it. This would not only speed up decision-making process but would also be more accurate. AI is providing positive results such as increased productivity, improved accuracy, and reduced cost.