Nearly half of all accountants would prefer to be doing something else in the
next five years, according to research by accountancy software provider
The increasingly onerous regulations, concerns over inflation, and discord
with HMRC have brought gloom to the profession.
When asked: “What are you most looking forward to in the next five years,”
the majority of respondents answered “retirement”.
Just fewer than 90% said over time it will become tougher to keep up with tax
and financial reporting regulations with just over half, 57%, claiming HMRC will
have a more direct role in regulating the profession’s work and processes in the
Over a quarter of the accountants surveyed believe they will be sending all
their compliance work offshore for processing within the next five years, with
three quarters seeing themselves moving away from their traditional role to a
more profitable consultant and business adviser position.
More than 80% of the accountants felt in the future it will become an
important part of their job to advise clients on the best use of IT to optimise
profit and efficiency.
Over a third see themselves working in a totally paperless office in the next
five years, and just fewer than half see themselves “dipping” into clients’
information via cloud based systems and not being tied down to a specific
Anders Bjornsbo, E-conomic’s operational director, said: “It’s alarming that
half the accountants we spoke to said they were thinking of leaving the
profession. While that’s unlikely to happen, it is perhaps illustrative of the
dissatisfaction and disillusionment felt by accountants today.”
“The need for accountants to embrace technology, and the speed of change
brought about by online technology has been the elephant in the room for too
long. While for most the totally paperless office remains an unattainable
vision, the responses we received to our survey clearly show that technology is
firmly at the centre of the future of accountancy,” he added.
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