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Accountants' tech desires and concerns revealed


The future desires and concerns of accountants regarding technology have been unveiled in the 5th annual ATSA Technology Survey, conducted by accounting consultant firm, Smithink.

By Mitchell Turner 9 minute read

The location and safety of data proved to be at the forefront of concerns for many accountants.

Respondents who classified themselves as ‘very concerned’ by issues of data security remained stagnant between 2013 and 2014, contrasted by a 10 per cent increase in 2015, with 40 per cent of respondents now classing themselves as ‘very concerned’ regarding potential threats to data security.

David Smith, director at Smithink, highlighted his surprise that accountants were not feeling any more secure as time passes.

“You reckon that after this period of time people would be feeling more comfortable,” he said.

With concerns over security increasing, issues regarding the location of the data itself have also undergone a slight increase since 2013, according to the survey.

“When I started that particular part of the survey in 2011, I thought that it was going to move dramatically over the next few years, and it just hasn’t,” said Mr Smith.

Mr Smith noted that these concerns could have a potential impact on cloud providers as they seek to expand their market share.

“You do wonder whether it’s holding back the cloud providers, you do wonder whether their take up could be a lot faster and a lot harder if those stats were different,” he said.

Since the introduction of the technology survey in 2011, a demand for increased integration across suppliers has remained the number one desire for accountants, garnering more than double the support of the next most requested feature.

With Australia still lagging behind in terms of high speed internet offerings, improved broadband connections remained at the forefront of accountants' desires.

“Internet connection is still a big issue, and is one of the things that people say is holding them back,” noted Mr Smith.

As client portals and cloud app integration become a vital part of many accounting operations, the desire for efficient paperless workings also increased among respondents.

Mitchell Turner


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