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AI will change professional landscape but not steal jobs

As a sell-out audience at Metro Bank hears from ICAEW Tech Faculty about the impact AI will have on the profession, a new report reveals how corporate deal-making could be changed forever.


August 2019

Last month in Croydon, Metro Bank hosted a sell-out event with Mark Taylor from ICAEW’s Tech Faculty discussing what effect technology will have on the accountancy profession.

He outlined the impact artificial intelligence will have on practices, businesses and finance functions as well as more broadly on the changing roles people will hold and the skills that we will need to fulfil these positions. 

While Taylor made it clear that AI is transforming the accountancy landscape, he reassured the audience that computers will not be stealing their jobs.

Taylor’s comments came as a new report from ICAEW and Drooms, a leading data solutions company, revealed that some key decision making may soon be taken away from humans and guided instead by the application of artificial intelligence (AI) in many stages of a deal process.

AI in Corporate Advisory focuses on the opportunities and risks of using AI for those involved in corporate finance transactions, including businesses, investors, advisers, bankers and the wider economy. 

It explores how AI technologies will augment the existing business models of advisory firms, corporations and consulting groups, allowing organisations to do better due diligence, make better predictions, and guarantee the success of deals.

To inform this project, ICAEW’s Corporate Finance Faculty and Drooms carried out extensive research and also convened an Expert Consultative Group that included many of those who are leading the development of AI-based services and applications within major professional services organisations including PwC, Deloitte, EY and KPMG, as well as many of the City’s leading law firms and banks. 

The group was chaired by Lord Tim Clement-Jones CBE, a leading UK parliamentarian and expert on the application of AI. He said: “AI, even in its narrow form, will have a profound impact on corporate governance. This report is the first in the world to specifically address the application of AI in the context of Mergers and Acquisitions. Potential benefits include faster, more accurate and more insightful due diligence processes. Professional judgment will become more, not less, important in the age of AI, but in a global AI market dominated by the US and China, countries such as the UK will need to increase public and private investment markedly.”

David Petrie, Head of Corporate Finance at ICAEW, said: “Over the next three years there will be a sea-change in the way global mergers, acquisitions and corporate investment decisions are evaluated and transacted.”

Rosanna Woods, UK Managing Director at Drooms said: “We all need to maximise the benefits of applying machine-learning by committing to value-based collaboration. Open dialogue will drive positive change.”

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