How Automation Solves the Finance Team “Tedium” Problem

Plugging tax preparation tasks into artificial intelligence is a big priority with CFOs in 2023.

One recurring issue arising with CFOs and potential artificial intelligence rollouts is how badly companies need help filling corporate finance roles at the staff level.

The issue isn’t necessarily salaries or perks (although those factors could easily be in play), it’s recognizing how potential finance team members don’t want to be tied down with tedious tasks day after day.

A case in point.

A fresh study from Avalara, a UK-based tax compliance automation software provider, finds 84% of CFOs surveyed in the United States (U.S.) and United Kingdom (U.K.) face a significant talent shortage within their accounting and finance teams.

It’s a legitimate issue that shines a new light on how AI can be a game changer in the finance and accounting realm.

More specifically, 47% of CFOs believe employee burnout around hours and menial tasks, as well as accounting and finance professionals changing careers “were notable factors for the diminishing talent pool.”

The study notes how AI can help CFOs fill those roles and keep employees engaged, productive, and – most of all – happy.

“Finance leaders must balance their company’s business dynamics while navigating unpredictable waters, given the pressures of high inflation, growing talent gaps, and concerns over an impending recession,” notes Ross Tennenbaum, CFO of Avalara. “The rise of artificial intelligence will help finance leaders around the world find new ways to drive savings and help make their current teams more energized by streamlining and automating repetitive accounting and financial tasks to help manage the accountant talent shortage gap that the majority of CFOs are facing.”

Chasing the Blues Away

The ”tedium” factor would likely go away if a company deployed AI in the finance suite, the study notes, primarily as company finance leaders seek to “equip their existing teams with intelligent automation technology that will streamline work.”

Overall, the report shows 92% of finance professionals surveyed agree that AI tools will help businesses find efficiencies, drive productivity, and increase profitability. “These CFOs are acting on this belief, with 89% planning to invest in AI to streamline their finance functions,” the study states. “Furthermore, nearly half (44%) of CFOs are making immediate moves and are set to adopt AI by the end of 2023.”

Is that enough to turn the tide and shut down that tedium factor for workers?

Study analysts sure think so.

“AI holds transformative potential for finance and accounting. Imagine finance professionals conversing with their data as they would with an assistant. AI can act as a research and data analyst, boosting productivity,” says Vsu Subramanian, SVP of Content Engineering and AI at Avalara. “By automating mundane tasks, AI can empower teams and uncover savings.”

“Companies that embrace AI now will stand out and reap greater benefits than those who hesitate,” he adds.

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