Prospects of Accounting Profession in the future: Declining or Demanding?
NORHANIZAH JOHARI NAZIFAH MUSTAFFHA NOOR RAUDIAH ABU BAKAR (DR.) KOLEJ UNIVERSITI ISLAM ANTARABANGSA SELANGOR (KUIS)
INTRODUCTION OBJECTIVES OF STUDY LITERATURE REVIEW FINDINGS & DISCUSSION CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATION METHODOLOGY MOTIVATION OF THE STUDY
Higher education and employment are two important life aspects for students as education is a stepping stone for them to enhance their future career opportunities . ( Heang et al., 2019) Accounting graduates are the pipeline for accounting career in the labor market. Global trends are transforming the world of work and reshaping the future of the accountancy profession. (ACCA, 2020) It is h ow careers in the profession will adapt, how skills will transform and how learning in the profession will evolve in a future sustainable global economy. (ACCA, 2020)
It is concerns about technology disrupting jobs in the accountancy sector has put the sector in the spotlight . (WEF, 2018; Singapore Accountancy Commission, 2020) Despite the fears that automation may replace jobs in the sector, the accountancy workforce expanded by over 16%, from 17,419 in 2014 to 20,280 in 2018. and, the number of jobs in Accounting Entities and their related firms grew by 7% in 2018 . (Singapore Accountancy Commission, 2020)
MOTIVATION OF STUDY
Data Entry Clerks Accounting, Bookkeeping and Payroll Clerks Administrative and Executive Secretaries Assembly and Factory Workers Client Information and Customer Service Workers* Business Services and Administration Managers Accountants and Auditors Material-Recording and Stock-Keeping Clerks General and Operations Managers* Postal Service Clerks Financial Analysts Cashiers and Ticket Clerks Mechanics and Machinery Repairers Telemarketers Electronics and Telecommunications Installers and Repairers Bank Tellers and Related Clerks Car, Van and Motorcycle Drivers Sales and Purchasing Agents and Brokers Door-To-Door Sales Workers, News and Street Vendors, and Related Workers Statistical, Finance and Insurance Clerks Lawyers
Source : Future of Jobs Survey 2018 (WEF, 2018)
PROBLEM STATEMENT: Is the prospect of accounting profession in the near future declining or demanding?
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
(1) To study the expected demand or decline for accounting profession in the future. ( 2) To explore sustainability of accounting profession in the future. (3) To determine the industries that are in-demand of accounting talent.
Accounting Education Accounting Streams Potential Accounting Profession Accounting practitioners see the need for accounting graduates to focus on continuous learning and education, particularly in acquiring knowledge and skills in IT. ( Ghani & Muhammad, 2019) Management Accountancy - provide financial expertise and insight internally within a company or organization. In the area of decision making, budget analysis and forecasting potential gains or losses. (U.K’s Specialist Accountancy Job Board, 2021) There are more than 35,000 qualified accountants in Malaysia; the target is to grow the number to 60,000 ( https://www.thestar.com.my/business/business-news/2019/10/11)
Accounting Education Accounting Streams Potential Accounting Profession To frame optimal mix of intellectual, technical and generic skills in accounting education to help students to develop a social identity relevant to their work context. (Herbert et al., 2021) Financial accountants - provide information externally to different clients either for individuals, shareholders, investors or creditors. (U.K’s Specialist Accountancy Job Board, 2021) Accountants will also play a key role in designing, implementing, and maintaining an integrated system of internal control over companies’ financial and sustainability-related objectives. (Hales, 2018)
Library search Google Scholar articles (2018-2021) Report from Accounting Bodies (2018-2021)
Findings & DISCUSSION
RO1 – Demand/Decline RO2 - S ustainability RO3 - Potential I ndustries Accountants (ranked Top 9) Accounting Assistants (ranked Top 15) of Top 50. (Malaysia Quarterly Labour Market Perspectives, 2020) Accounting Tasks Automation Cannot Perform: Interpretation, Decision-making, Advisory, Ability to make the client feel at ease, Creative Thinking, Handle unexpected situations, Ability of control, review and make judgments, Reasoning knowledge / cross competencies. Public Practice - audit and assurance, tax advice, consultancy, risk management The future of the accounting profession in more stable and resilient 21st-century markets. (Hales, 2018) Commerce and industry - banks, various sized organizations (Fin. Management & Fin. Reporting). The job outlook for accountants will grow 6% from 2018 to 2028. i.e. in audit, advisory and tax (U.K’s Specialist Accountancy Job Board, 2021). Charity and not-for-profit - budget and financial systems. The demand for accounting talent continues to be strong - expected to create 566 accounting jobs in 2020 (Singapore Accountancy Commission, 2020) There is significant career opportunities for professional accountants in the coming decade. (ACCA, 2020) Public Sector - health, education, housing, emergency services and local authority services.
CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS
Prospect of accounting profession in the future is promising. The future starts now – the need to re-skills, up-skills & up-grades for the profession to remain sustainable in the future. Machine capability could not replace human capability in many ways. Machines are tool to ease human tasks not to take place human thinking capabilities. Accounting profession is still relevant in any era of technological advancements – require re-skills , up-skills & up-grades to cope with the advancement in technology. Nurture accounting knowledge to secondary education –> prepare accounting talent pipeline to tertiary education -> prepare for labor market.