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Accountants ‘fatigued’ by technology choices, study claims

Accountancy professionals are finding that quality in the industry is “suffering” due to technology choices, according to a recent survey by Huddle.

The survey revealed that employees found that the technology used to manage client engagements has become “increasingly fragmented”, and that quality is suffering under “increasing time pressures and the need to juggle multiple applications to keep work on track”. 

The survey features interviews with more than 250 partners and senior executives across the UK, and was launched to understand how firms are using technology to work with clients.

It found that 38% of respondents believed their organisation was “far too slow” in adopting appropriate technologies to accommodate client demands. 

As a result, many felt “fatigued” by the complexity of technology solutions options available to them when working with clients, which has reportedly fragmented workflows, slowed productivity and introduced risk.

Some 32% of employees said they had to move between multiple applications to keep track of client updates, whilst 26% said it was increasingly challenging to control document revisions.

A further 31% cited increased instances of missed deadlines being missed, while 24% reported “inefficiencies caused by duplication of effort”, with multiple people working on the same piece of work.

Huddle CMO, Tim Deluca-Smith, said: “UK accountancy firms are ramping up their digital transformation initiatives. 

“However, the results suggest that teams are now being bounced between different apps to manage their client engagements.” 

He added: “Combined with ever-growing client demands, it can be challenging on teams to keep control. Productivity is quickly damaged and the audit trail of activity is immediately broken.”

“Given these findings, we believe the need for a more holistic and collaborative approach to managing client engagements is paramount to delivering on the client experience and to protect the firm from potential data breaches.”

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