AI has potential to completely transform finance industry, survey suggests

One-third of business leaders foresee artificial intelligence (AI) as a pivotal force set to “transform” the realm of finance and accounting, per recent research findings.

bluQube, a provider of cloud-based accounting software, conducted a survey among business leaders to gauge their perceptions regarding AI, a technology hailed as both an incredible opportunity and a substantial threat to society’s future.

The respondents’ opinions reflect the belief that AI will streamline or eliminate repetitive and labor-intensive tasks, providing them with additional time to focus on strategic thinking. Trust emerges as a significant concern, with almost 63% of those surveyed expressing a willingness to trust AI in the sphere of finance and accounting. Addressing trust issues and ensuring AI doesn’t reinforce negative stereotypes stands out as one of the most urgent challenges linked to this technology.

These findings offer insights into the mindset of senior business figures, especially pertinent at a time when AI dominates headlines. However, despite its widespread coverage, business leaders don’t always swiftly embrace new technology. For instance, last year, over 20% of surveyed business leaders considered blockchain as “all hype and no substance,” according to separate research.

Simon Kearsley, CEO of bluQube, notes, “Discussions around AI often revolve around its potential to reshape existing job roles. Our research in the finance and accounting field suggests that leaders’ perceptions may be influenced by how they currently view AI’s capabilities.”

Kearsley explains that those viewing AI as a standalone technology with the potential to replace human intelligence often anticipate it de-skilling or replacing finance professionals. However, among the businesses (29%) that have already implemented AI in finance, 67% have acknowledged its value in data filtering and analysis, such as audit analytics and expense reports.

“While AI will certainly alter the daily responsibilities of finance professionals by automating repetitive tasks and improving efficiencies,” Kearsley adds, “it’s encouraging that a larger segment of respondents (28%) recognize the potential for creating new types of roles.”

He emphasizes that as AI becomes more integrated into the accounting profession, it won’t lead to the extinction of human jobs. Instead, it can pave the way for a more diverse career landscape, empowering accountants to offer better financial insights and contribute more significantly to the organizations they serve.

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