The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) is a global body for professional accountants. It defines a commercial accountant as a: person responsible for the efficient running of the commercial elements of an organisation’s finance function. Definitions for the role vary, but usually include aspects of a traditional finance function that are associated directly with profitability and liquidity in a business. One of their key responsibilities is to be involved in monitoring and developing financial processes to ensure the business finances are well controlled. This simply means they can never escape analytics in their daily routine.
Why Commercial Accountants?
Before we explore the correlation between commercial accountants and analytics, let us understand who they are in a professional setting. They play a crucial role in strategic and commercial decision-making and without a doubt, the career calls for high analytical skills.
Commercial accountants are key in supporting boards of directors through providing quality analysis. This also means they are instrumental in strategic business planning by ensuring the bulk of the decision making is data-driven.
Data and Technology
The typical commercial accountant should possess relevant skills in understanding data analytics and extracting them to form a cohesive conclusion. Usually, they would identify strategic data sets to work with depending on the query of business planning; analyse data using appropriate tools such as Power BI or Python; visualise the data into digestible formats for easy consumption; and apply ethical judgement to the outcome.
“The human element of data analytics is the most critical factor in building a successful program,” said Roshan Ramlukan, EY principal and global assurance analytics leader. “But it’s also the least understood and an impediment to further growth in this area. Leaders must also recognize that analytical skills must be developed in all of their people, not just a few data analysts.” This exceprt, taken from Journal of Accountacy, could not present a more stronger case. The human factor is simply the most potent criterion in the evolution of technology. With it, businesses can flourish and without it, brands can easily flop.
Duality Exists For A Reason
Just like day and night, commercial accountants and analytics can never be separated. As with waves breaking on shore, the onset of data brings forth many ups and downs. These challenges come with equal amounts of opportunities. Fortunately for us, as human beings, we will always find a way to improvise. Challenges in learning about technology can be solved by attending appropriate training and development programmes. Opportunities in advancing technology allows for a more transparent and thorough reporting which makes for better decision-making.
The year 2020 is upon us all and the latest economic situation has put a few things into perspective. How can you ensure your business stays evergreen and put up a fight against a looming recession? As a commercial accountant who has seen the industry pivot in the past, you would have all the knowledge to survive and making sure your leaders and clients are on your side as time goes by. Are you ready to be an accountant that stands out in the new normal? The answer lies in here. Accounting is way more than bookkeeping and filing tax returns and we couldn’t agree more. To some, it may just be a department, to the majority, it is the lifeline of a company.