Is AI The Future Of Audit Or All Hype?
Artificial intelligence is billed as the future of everything—a magical panacea to all of the world’s challenges, heralding a utopian future where algorithms will know exactly what’s required and when. Is the future of audit really all about AI, or is it just hype?
Challenges Facing Audit
It’s important to start with a high-level overview of the challenges audit faces today. Solving the challenges of trust, talent and technology is going to be the key to getting a glimpse of what audit will look like tomorrow and beyond.
There is a general sentiment that auditors have lost the trust of the people who rely on them for accurate financial information. This isn’t pervasive or threatening, but for a profession that prides itself on its reputation, each new accounting scandal jeopardizes this hard-won stature.
The “Great Resignation” is well documented, as are statistics showing that numbers entering this industry are down across the board. Another key element here is that for audit—like many other professions—tomorrow’s auditors are looking to be proficient in coding and the latest algorithmic developments in order to remain relevant and be positioned to add value.
From a technological perspective, there are necessary advancements being implemented so auditors can provide the assurance that users rely on. Financial transactions are getting more complex, new technologies such as the blockchain are increasingly relevant and cryptocurrencies are becoming mainstream. If an auditor doesn’t have a deep understanding of these areas touching almost every business today, how can they render an opinion?