Are dark clouds forming over the accounting profession?

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]The Internet has undoubtedly changed the way we communicate, work and even live. Web 2.0, the rise of user generated content and social media has changed how we engage with each other and much like the proliferation of mobile phones and text messaging, it is almost hard to remember what we did before we had Facebook or Whatsapp. How did we even argue with distant acquaintances over political events before social media? Did nights out even happen before we could tag our friendship circle in photographs?

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Interestingly there are now jobs that didn’t even exist 10 years ago thanks to the Internet. Social media managers, chief listening officers & even market research data miners! Unfortunately for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction; and much like the textile worker lost ground to automation and machinery, people are now losing their jobs to The Internet. Quite simply, professions and industries that fail to be responsive to the advancement of technology will suffer from their complacence.

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While there can be no substitute for a quality ‘real world’ accountant, there is no doubt that online bookkeeping and accounting software systems such as Quickbooks and Clearbooks are gaining ground, with them steadily increasing in market share year on year. The continuous development of new features and low prices in the battle for competitiveness poses a serious threat to the accounting profession. There is a considerable risk that the more advanced these systems become, the more features and benefits they can offer, and the lower their prices drop, the less people will turn to trained and qualified real world accountants, who by the very nature of their business model cannot compete on price.

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A tipping point is soon to be upon us whereby those who fail to be predictive and proactive in their approach to their business model and offering, or those who fail to adapt their value proposition to the needs of their audience, will be made obsolete.

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Jack Barron

Director & Customer Acquisition Specialist

0161 325 00 20