The vast majority of accounting professionals see their roles developing as a result of technology in the next few years, according to new research by recruitment consultancy Renaix.

But that is not a bad thing, they believe. In fact, nine out of ten (92%) of the 200 respondents are optimistic about the impact of increased automation on the profession.

Four in five are already seeing an influence from emerging IT on their day-to-day tasks. Advanced data analytics (63%), cloud computing (42%), robotics (17%) and artificial intelligence (15%) were cited by the accountants. Only one in ten (12%) think their role will be completely automated in the near future, with 69% believing automation will make them more efficient and 59% believing it will open up opportunities to provide greater value to clients. Four in ten say it will reduce the transactional work they undertake.

More than half of respondents said they’ll have to up their game on tracking new tech developments, while also developing softer, communication-based skills.

“Finance and accounting organisations have a fantastic opportunity to drive forward digital transformation, empowering all employees to play their part in developing and implementing new ways of working,” said Renaix managing director Paul Jarrett.

“However, to do so effectively, employers need to ensure they are equipping the workforce with the right skills, as well as investing in bringing in the right talent.”