Finance Automation From The Bottom Up

Questions around robotic process automation (RPA) have moved beyond whether it will disrupt the finance suite (the answer is “Yes”) to how quickly (the answer is “Right Now”) into exactly how and what practices need to change in order to adapt.
The consensus research around automaton puts the vast majority mid and entry-level finance and accounting jobs squarely in its crosshairs. A 2013 study by Oxford University researchers concluded that service occupations, where most us job growth has occurred bookkeeping and accounting employment, are “highly susceptible to computerization.”
Conversely, the study concludes that senior-level positions that “are intensive in generalist tasks requiring social intelligence” are at lower risk.
See the graph below.

In a report issued by Morgan Stanley last year, analysts spelled out the impact more specifically. [Basic data entry from standardized forms in an accounting role may be completely automatable, with relatively few robots and limited oversight, generating the greatest cost savings,” the report says. “Whereas, a more complex internal audit role may have only limited aspects that can be automatable and will require the output to be scrutinized by staff.” The Financial Executives Research Foundation is partnering with Workday to understand where senior-level financial executives are focusing their RPA efforts and where they plan to take automation practices next.

Updates this research coming soon.