ICAN urges accountants on relevance, bridges skill gap

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The President, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, Onome Adewuyi, has said to remain relevant, accountants need to keep pace and embrace the changing dynamics linked to disruptive technology.

She also said in its resolve to bridge the capacity building gap in the profession, it had reached an advanced stage in the establishment of a specialised International University of Management, Nigeria.

She spoke during the 15th Western Zonal Conference of ICAN with the theme, “Disruptive economy – Implications for the accounting profession,” in Ogun State.

Adewuyi said, “To remain relevant, accountants will need to keep pace and embrace the changing dynamics linked to disruptive technology.

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“The profile of the profession is rapidly changing towards a more cloud-based services, significant harnessing of the power of big data, integration of non-traditional financial information and a more efficient and mobile profession.

“Accountants must, therefore, examine the new/evolving processes and ensure that they provide safeguards for any existing loopholes capable of being exploited.”

Presently, she added, robotic process automation was being implemented at different levels of the profession and various repetitive processes were already being automated.

Increased application of robotics was providing an opportunity for accountants and finance staff to spend more time on higher value add activities and participate as strategic thinkers in business development, she said.

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According to her, the blend of skills and competencies required by professional accountants was evolving quickly, and the types of services provided by accountants developing rapidly.

Speaking on the specialised university, she said it would address the challenge of thousands of students seeking post graduate in management courses such as accounting, finance, economics and business administration but could not gain admission due to limited spaces in existing tertiary Institutions.

She said, “Our target is to get the University operational by September 2021.

“We have acquired and paid for a 108 hectares of land in Kwali-Abuja, FCT where the permanent site will be located. We are almost concluding payment for the take-off of temporary site.

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The Chairman, ICAN, Mowe and District Society, Nyakno Ololade, said the disruptions by COVID-19 presented opportunities for accountants to build their skill sets in order to be able to adapt to the changing world of work.

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