How will the role of an accountant change post COVID-19?

Accountants computer equipment on a desk

As the pandemic swept the country, businesses had to quickly change the way they operated.

As the restrictions ease, everyone is now looking to see what the new “normal” is, so we’ve had a look to the future to see how accountants may be affected.

Working in an office or from home?

Many of us have realised that working from home is actually do-able, and that this way of working may be here to stay.

Obviously there will be some who have struggled to adapt, such as working parents, who’ve realised that there is little peace and quiet from youngsters demanding their attention. For them, the office may be a more productive environment to work in.

Also, younger members of the team may struggle working from home if they still live with parents, and their room has had to become their office. Home working is best with a dedicated space, which might not be possible.

It seems like there will be more remote working options, but businesses will still need office space for meetings, and for those who cannot work productively in their home.

Home working does have great benefits. It means no commute, and no need to be in a busy environment, plus there’s less risk of contamination. Ultimately it may be your decision, but you might find that your company decides that working from home is the way forward.

Adapting to new technology

Accountancy is one of those professions that can end up with a lot of paperwork. Maybe now is the time to look at how we can cut down on that and use software wherever we can to produce reports and accounts digitally.

Digital signatures can be made as secure as handwritten ones, and with the correct level of security settings there should be less risk than putting something in the post.

Meetings and conferences can now be done by video calls, as long as the internet speeds are up to scratch. Using up to date programmes and software, and helping your clients and staff use them too, should make home working easier, and cut down on travel hours.

Become the point of contact for clients

During the pandemic many people have been turning to their accountants for help and advice as they can’t talk to their banks as easily. It’s important to stay open to their concerns, and become that helpful point of contact where you can.

This could be the time to highlight the value of your advice, and demonstrate your expertise to make sure that you’re the go-to person post COVID-19.

Still studying? Don’t worry about your future

Accountants are always going to be in demand. Businesses can’t run without them. So if you’re still studying and worrying about your future, you don’t have to.

Be assured that there will always be jobs out there for you. It may just require a little bit of adapting to the post COVID-19 world.