Changes observed in the accounting profession include the usage of sophisticated smart technologies, such as robotics, and smart software systems. The profession is also experiencing changes in reporting standards, as they have to now link financial information to non-financial information, an example being ESG disclosure.

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By Ntokozo Nkambule

The Chairperson of the Eswatini Institute of Accountants (ESIA), Barnabas Dlamini says it is without a doubt that the accounting profession is facing significant changes and will continue to face them in the next two to three decades.

Dlamini was speaking during a workshop hosted by the Institute in partnership with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), held at the Hilton Garden Inn, Mbabane. The purpose of the workshop was to discuss and interrogate the report on the ‘State of The Accountancy Profession in Africa’.

Dlamini observed that professional organizations, their members, and educational institutions need to respond to changes, which include among others, digitization and automation of the accounting and finance function.

“We are seeing more and more entities using sophisticated and smart technologies which tend to replace the traditional ways of doing things. More entities are making use of robotics and smart software systems, which include cloud computing amongst others” he noted.

The seasoned practitioner further noted that they are also seeing changes in reporting standards. He said professional accountants are now required to have skills that provide all-inclusive corporate reporting which will tell less about financial information, but link the financial information to non-financial information, an example being Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) disclosure.

Moreover, Dlamini said they have also observed increased regulations as a result of public pressures and stakeholder expectations on social and environmental issues. He said because of such developments new forms of regulation were emerging and as professional accountants, they need to respond to them.

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