Information technologies are changing the nature and economics of accounting activities. Information Technology (IT) is rapidly gaining presence in the workplace. All areas in the business arena are achieving expansion in IT and investing huge sums money in this area. Within this changing environment, several key strategic trends have defined a new role for computers.
The career plans of accountants and related training systems must refocus on the changing nature of accounting, the changing role of the accountancy profession in providing services to businesses, governments and the community at large as well as the knowledge and skills required for future success as professional accountants.
Societies expect accountants who accept engagements or in the accounting fraternity to have reasonable level of competences to perform the work required. The accountant of today should endeavor to possess the needed knowledge and skills to demonstrate competence.
The competences of accountants in IT strategy must be enhanced and preserved in order to maintain both the accountancy profession’s credibility and capability in supporting new strategic information technology initiatives.
Information technology is also affecting the way in which businesses are being managed, structured and operated. One dramatic development affecting organizations is the fusion of business and IT strategies. Organizations can no longer develop business strategies separate from IT/IS strategies and vice versa.
Accordingly, there is a need for integration of sound business and information technology planning and the incorporation of effective finance and management controls within business systems. (Dr. S-Anomah & Associates).
Trends and Implications of the Accountancy profession
Accountants have traditionally produced information to enhance management decision-taking. With the advent of new information technologies and expanded sources and means of access to information, accountants can help bring richer sets of information to bear on specific managerial decisions and screen out unnecessary information.
One of the implications of the growth of such services is the need to expand accountants’ perspectives beyond their traditional focus on accounting information to other relevant types of information and performance indicators, including non-financial information.
The body of knowledge and skills required of accountants entail a variety of important areas and IT/IS is not exception. This area presents a challenge to accountants it requires special attention due to its explosive growth and the high rate of change.
By: Daniel Kusi
Strategic information systems
Strategy is the art of creating value which ‘provides the intellectual frameworks, conceptual models and governing ideas that allow a company’s managers to identify opportunities for bringing value to customers and for delivering that value at a profit’. Strategic information systems concern planning and implementing business strategies with computerized systems so as to obtain the benefits resulting from reduced operational costs, innovativeness and profitability as a result of the use of IT. These are also systems where information resources are applied to tap strategic business opportunities in such a way that the computer systems impact on the organization’s operations, products and services.
People & Computers
Though artificial intelligence is being introduced in all sectors of the economy and labor is being replaced with computerized systems, the emotional and the financial intelligence of the accountant is still needed to interpret financial statements for management decisions-taking purposes. The accountant must adopt news technologies especially working on ERPs in order to remain relevant at post.