Non-major bank finds tech a mixed bag for accountants

A new report from an Australian bank has found that the accounting industry is seeing both positive and negative effects from the rise of technology.

This week Bankwest released its Industry Overview Report on accountancy as part of its Business Insights series.

The research found that the accounting profession generated $18.7 billion in revenue in 2015-16. The report indicated that is expected to grow by 8.3 per cent to $20.3 billion in 2019-20.

Breaking it down into service types, audit services made up 41 per cent of all revenue, up 2 per cent from the year prior. Advisory services made up 34 per cent, tax services contributed 22 per cent, and bookkeeping was responsible for the last 3 per cent.

This changing make-up of services is the result of increasing importance of technology in accounting services according to Sinead Taylor, executive general manager of business banking at Bankwest.

“Accounting firms are increasingly investing in information technology and telecommunications to open up new revenue streams and generate more value add for clients. This has led to the growth of real-time accounting services and cloud services,” Ms Taylor said.

“Conversely, it’s interesting to see that bookkeeping now makes up only 3 per cent of accounting service revenue. The rise of efficient and cheap bookkeeping software in the last 15 years has meant smaller companies are better able to manage their own affairs without hiring a bookkeeper.”

 

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