Technology will evolve from screens, to seamless fully integrated extensions of ourselves.
As tasks done by Accountants and Bookkeepers will likely be automated, their role needs to evolve into consultants that guide the transition of their clients as they adapt to the new rules of the modern economy.
Trillions of sensors
It has been labelled the Fourth Industrial Revolution. A moment in time which will change the way our species exist. Trillions of sensors, all connected to the cloud on an ultra fast 5G network, will capture staggering amounts of data, feeding algorithms that power our lives. As the cost of hardware continues to plummet, and the power of technology skyrockets exponentially, our dependence on augmented computing will increase with every day.
Just like our household appliances are automatically factored into the design of our houses, so will the dozens of sensors that monitor and capture the data of our lives. They will be silent and invisible as they watch, listen and feel for what we are doing, capturing and feeding that data into algorithms that predict, plan and proactively make decisions for us. It is inevitable that after bouts of regulation, the tides will turn on tech giants who own and commerialse our personal data, shifting the power back to us. This will allow us to commercialise and leverage our own personal data for ourselves.
Outsource the tasks
The ones who will thrive in the future economy will be the ones who best automate the menial tasks, allowing the human resource to think on a whole new set of problems. Capturing, processing, formatting, and publishing data will be the work of robots. This will be enlightening for us as Accountants and Bookkeepers, as the big problems that require real creativity and human intuition will be the focus of all new ventures.
Our personal AIs will know everything about us, our business, our clients, and the economy. One centralised brain will manage the everyday tasks of Accounting and Bookkeeping, constantly updating with the latests algorithms that calculate and forecast the success of our clients.
The days of storing data in a paper ledger, catalogued and boxed up in the office garage will be a distant memory, as our roles will evolve into future focussed consulting.
5G Powered Cloud
The network will give an identity and voice to everything from our cars to the toaster. Sensors will be integrated into everything, and be continuously feeding data into the cloud.
Thousands of calculations will be made each minute by a constantly improving AI systems. There will be thousands of features of your personal assistants, available like any other SAS product. The smarts will be so in tune with us personally, we will trust it enough to make everyday decisions for us.
Mobile sensory technology
Mobile phones are already packed with over 20 sensors. This hardware will become a physical extension of our bodies, integrated into wearables such as contact lenses, rings and watches, and even implanted under our skin.
Living in an augmented world
The giant windows silently dim as afternoon sun lights beams into the office.
“The presentation to the team from Doze Inc is confirmed. Laura sends her apologies, and Yuri will be here in 5 minutes."
The softly spoken voice reminds Tess from a series of tiny speakers seamlessly integrated into her desk.
Tess is a Financial Consultant in Melbourne, with a focus on the retail sector. Her clients span pure ecommerce businesses to ones based on traditional bricks-and-mortar stores, all with an air of luxury to them.
One in particular, Doze Inc., is experiencing massive growth. They have Experience Stores at the Hyperloop Station in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. All their products and services offer a better rest, nap or sleep.
Today is an especially exciting day, as Tess has brokered a deal with the global leading facial recognition technology, Facey. This means anyone from Facey’s database of 2.2 billion travellers that pass by Doze Inc’s stores, instantly get an offer in context that moment. It takes into account things like who they are, where they are going, and how long they have been travelling for.
“Yuri has ordered coffee, are you ready for your second cup of the day?”
“No, thanks Jay, just water please."
Jay is her personal AI assistant. He manages all of her professional and personal life and is fed real time data from everything from her dog’s kennel to her savings account. Tess swipes through the alternate forecasts Jay calculated ahead of the momentary client meeting.
“I’ve had a look at what you’ve pulled together… i’m impressed as always. Can you please display in the presentation forecast A, D and B in that order, and then map the tax benefits for paying in Australian Dollar and LiteCoin? We need the benefits of going with Crypto to be obvious.”
She gets up from her desk, and heads to reception to greet the client. Jay’s voice seamlessly follows her from speakers in her private office, to the tiny pods in her ear.
“And remember, Yuri’s daughter is Ana, with one ‘N’. She was accepted into that Kindergarten you referred him just after they arrived from Russia”
Tess acknowledges with a smile, and continues walking through the heavy glass doors to greet her client. The coffee and water are waiting for them in the boardroom as Tess holds the door open.
“I’m so excited to run you through the Facey investment. As we know it has potential to totally transform how you market to foot traffic, which as of yesterday was 83.4% of your revenue. OK, Jay, can you beam us into the Sydney store, live? Here we go… our first customer.”
On the big screen, we see a 360 image of the storefront at the National Sydney Hyperloop Station. There are dozens of people streaming by the windows. The facial recognition highlights a male traveller walking in the direction of the shop.
A spinning wheel icon takes a fraction of a second to read the gentleman’s face and access his profile data.
“This is Anthony” interjects Tess, “he is from New Zealand. He has spent the last 4 nights travelling. And now… you can see on his personal Augmented Reality contact lenses, we are offering 8-hours in a Sleeping Pod on Level 12. How good is that?”
Yuri sits back in his chair and looks on in amazement as the customer walks into the store and immediately begins booking a Pod at a check out station.
“This is going to transform the business, your guidance through this has been invaluable. I can wait to share this with the board.”
They sit in silence, jaws open in amazement, watching as the sensors picked off every third person, and offered highly contextual offers, converting passers by into customers at an unprecedented rate.
“Jay, can you bring up the forecasts please? Let’s have a look at how this impacts the bottom line. After an initial license fee, Facey should pay for itself in just under 12 months, and if we accept LiteCoin exclusively, it will be 9 months with the tax benefits.”
The network of sensors is the catalyst for truly automating enormous chunks of Facey’s operations. Just like Tess, Bookkeepers and Accountant will consult on these transitions, and become an indispensable member of the team responsible for future-proofing the client’s business.
The big opportunity is to evolve to owning the conversation with your client beyond just Accounting and Bookkeeping, and consulting on broader business factors. Build your knowledge and connections to consult on factors beyond financial issues. Follow the progress and commercial potential of technologies that relate to sensors and algorithms.
Allocate an experimental fund to new technologies such as Google Home. Live with them, and study them. Be the leading edge Bookkeeper clients seek advice from.
Internet of Things Meetups
Visit IoT Meetups, and meet the engineers creating platforms of the future. The products you demo and connections you make will put you in the top 1% of knowledgeable people.IoT Meetups