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KARACHI: A survey among members of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) sees a range of key organisational benefits in adopting digital technologies including flexibility/ adaptability, quality of products and services, sustainability performance, transparency and regulatory compliance (72%).

However, The Digital Horizons survey – which garnered 1,074 responses from the ACCA members globally – noted that financial professionals still see the main benefit of technology as offering efficiency/process improvements: 52% ranked efficiency, internal process optimisation or cost savings in their top three objectives when adopting a new technology.

Only 18% included competition-related reasons, such as responding to customer demands, enhancing market insights, introducing 24/7 capabilities, or maintaining competitive advantage. Cost remains the top challenge, but organisational culture also remains a critical factor.

Productivity (cited by 85% of respondents), collaboration (76%) and career development (65%) were all strong. Only 30% saying technology was supportive in that respect.

Alistair Brisbourne, Head of Technology Research ACCA, said: “Leadership is generally considered to be a cornerstone of successful innovation. At its core, embracing digital leadership means fostering a culture of innovation and being open to change, while embracing new tools and methodologies, such as AI and advanced analytics to transform processes.”

ACCA members showed a trust in artificial intelligence (AI) and optimism. 70% agreed with the statement “AI can increase the amount of time I have to focus on business-critical tasks.” Although just under one-fifth report the implementation of AI within their organisation, and another 8% are trialing initiatives. Basic AI literacy is key to harness the true potential of technologies.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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