Majority of accountants plan to leave profession within five years

FOUR in ten accountants are worried that technology and automation will make their jobs obsolete in the future, with many considering leaving the profession within ten years, new research has found.

According to a survey of 1341 accountants undertaken by, over half of accountants plan to set up their own business within five years amid deep concerns about their future job prospects within the profession.

“Compared to even five years ago, today’s accountant needs to be armed with a much broader range of skills including management, business advisory, technology and new business development skills,” said Simon Wright, operations director,

Other highlights of the research included:

  • A third of all accountants fear the interview process (41% among accountants aged between 18-30).  A fifth of these accountants fear the process so much that it stops them from applying for jobs
  • Three in ten accountants dread going to networking events – some so much that they pretend to be sick and others admitting they feel uncomfortable and awkward in social settings
  • Six in ten accountants would like to make a career change and swap to either industry or practice. However nearly half (43%) admitted that issues are holding them back from making the move including the economic climate, lacking the right skills and fearing the change would not pan out as they envisaged
  • Four in ten accountants are currently looking for a new job – with more than a third (35%) stating their reason is to work abroad
  • Western Europe continues to be the top destination to work abroad, with North America becoming increasingly popular year on year.  This year saw Australia and New Zealand climb to the third most popular career hotspot.

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