Accounting Recruitment – A disappearing future?

Accounting Recruitment – A disappearing future?

With the 4th Industrial Revolution well under way and Automation, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence potentially set to displace 7.2 m UK jobs over the next 20 years, many of our clients have started to evaluate the impact on the sectors in which they are operating.

It is not all gloom as it is also anticipated that 7.2m jobs are set to be created according to PWC UK economic Outlook Report .

The challenge is that some sectors are set to fair better than others.

Accounting and Finance is one that some commentators like Frey and Osborne from Oxford Martin University predict will be extensively automated.

This interactive graphic from Bloomberg (available on their website) indicates that the following accounting careers are high on the risk of automation

www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2017-job-risk/

But how is this so?

Well the first thing to say is that few commentators are predicting that technology will replace whole jobs, merely automate large numbers of activities that are typically performed by people in these roles. In accounting however a high percentage of the tasks performed by people in these roles are likely to be automated.

If you consider the accounting tools now available from Sage they can now accept direct feeds from business bank accounts and for regular transactions “rules” can be created on how the transactions are to be posted and handled.

Once the rules are created the user merely has to click “ok” to post a transaction. With Sage’s chatbot Pegg, receipts can also be logged, balances checked and notifications set up as simply as texting a friend.

In addition with the governments initiative to “Make Tax Digital” and the accounting software providers responding with automated processes to do this the role of simple and basic accounting is being “de-skilled”.

Where does this leave the Accounting Profession?

Well the more senior roles such as Finance Director, Financial Controller, Tax Advisor and Management Accountant that involve the interpretation of accounts or the management of complex financial businesses where critical thinking, risk management and the rationalisation of conflicting issues are all required, these roles are at a low risk of automation. That is because they are performing tasks that are harder to automate and are less rule based.

In addition these roles typically command higher levels of status and responsibility as well as salaries and earnings

One option for displaced workers is simple. Displaced professionals will benefit from training-up and re-skilling themselves into these more demanding and challenging roles.

In fact it is safe to say this is true of most of the 7m workers that are likely to be displaced across the whole of the UK economy. The new roles that will be created will require people to re-skill and retrain themselves and are likely to command higher incomes and will be more interesting and challenging as it is the more mundane and routine tasks that are set to be automated.

For all of us “Life-Long Learning” will be a pre-requisite in the next 10-20 years.

If you are interested to see the wider implications on the rest of employment and recruitment sector then you might wish to read our blog:

Future of Recruitment – A Shifting Paradigm for Recruiters

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Struggling, becoming desperate, close to giving up ……what is the lesson?

Struggling, becoming desperate, close to giving up

……what is the lesson?

 

Are you struggling?
Do you feel times are tough?
Did you set out on your current career, business quest with high energy, focus, enthusiasm and loads of belief and now after many weeks and months, maybe of obstacles and challenges, are feeling worn down and beaten up?

Then maybe you will allow me to tell you a story of one of my sales team who was struggling during the recession of the early 90s. For the purposes of this tale let’s call her Sophie.

Now Sophie was ambitious very talented with many skills but was struggling to generate sales and move her business forward and her life too. Though she was in her early 30s, very attractive, both personality and appearance wise, Sophie was encountering numerous challenges with men too who were unwilling to accept her as an equal and in some cases her ambition and perceived success made them uncomfortable.

To make things worse in the previous 12 months she had left the company we were both now working for but due to a takeover of her new company by our present employer she now found herself back in the same place, with the same job, at the same desk feeling very exasperated.

I too had only just joined the company and was faced with managing and helping Sophie.

You can well imagine however how frustrated Sophie was feeling, like she had nowhere to go, no one to turn to and totally like giving up.

As Sophie’s manager I sat down for a chat with her and she shared her troubles and feelings with me. I listened and reflected back to her on a practical level places where I believed she could improve her performance but I felt there was more to this. So at the time not knowing Sophie well I took a risk and shared with her a book I recently been made aware of; If life is a game, These are the Rules by Cherrie Carter-Scott.

If you are not familiar with this book then I suggest you check it out. In the book Cherrie Carter-Scott shares what she considers the 10 Rules for Being Human and it was the first four rules I shared with Sophie.

  1. You will receive a body. You may like it or hate it, but it’s yours to keep for the entire period.
  2. You will learn lessons. You are enrolled in a full-time informal school called, “life.”
  3. There are no mistakes, only lessons. Growth is a process of trial, error, and experimentation. The “failed” experiments are as much a part of the process as the experiments that ultimately “work.”
  4. Lessons are repeated until they are learned. A lesson will be presented to you in various forms until you have learned it. When you have learned it, you can go on to the next lesson.

I am delighted to say that Sophie did this and went on to be very successful with the company and eventually become a Sales Director and run her own business as well as finding a loving, caring husband who respects her and with whom she now has a lovely family.We discussed the rules but most particularly No 4. I pointed out I did not know what the lesson was that she was not learning but what I observed was that life was for some reason repeating a lesson. As her new boss I was prepared to work with her and help and support her whilst she worked through this lesson.

Since the early 90s I have met many more people who I have coached and supported, who have had similar issues with a lesson being repeated because in my experience that appears to be the nature of the universe.

In my experience if you set out with intent to achieve something the universe will support you initially but in order to achieve it you will have to undergo an element of personal growth. The bigger the vision you have, the greater the personal growth you must undergo.

So I suggest to all of you that if you feel like it is Groundhog Day. If your dream seems a long way off and you have feelings of giving up then look at yourself. Look into your dark corners and ask yourself what is the lesson I am missing.

You will be amazed that as you work through it how this will release all those other blockages in your life.

One piece of final advice is from Albert Einstein –

No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it

Good luck on your journey

Future of Work – Top 10 Reports

Future of Work/Future of Recruitment – Top 10 Reports

 

In our research we read hundred of reports and blogs each year. It is a dynamic landscape with new reports and interviews with sources out each week but the key reports we recommend reading and on which most of our blogs are based are:

In addition we can’t forget Elon Musk and his Various Interviews on YouTube. You would benefit from at least viewing a couple to gain a more holistic view of the world.

It is not necessary to read every report in full but we recommend at least reading the Exec Summary of some of these reports, though they are regularly quoted in articles and blogs on the Future of Work.

We heavily quote many of these reports and discuss our opinions on them in our two blogs:

Future of Recruitment 2020-2030 – Your Future Starts Today

 

Future of Recruitment – A Shifting Paradigm for Recruiters

 

Future of Recruitment 2020-30 – Your Future Starts Today – RecExpo 2018 Download

This week Ian Knowlson spoke at the Recruitment Expo at the NEC in Birmingham on the Future of the Recruitment Industry 2020-2030.

During the talk Ian discussed many topics including the future of recruitment for Managed Service Providers and Niche Agencies as well as the threats to their businesses future and the opportunities for them.

Ian’s talk received overwhelmingly positive reviews from those in attendance with numerous requests for copies of the slides.

Please complete the form below if you would like to receive the files.