The Highly Automated Firm: What it looks like in practice — and how to achieve it

Accounting firms are ripe for automation. At any given moment, they are brimming with data that is moving in all directions, in all kinds of formats, from sources ranging from paper to email, software applications and more. But in practice today, firms tend to have highly manual processes in place to support these data flows, requiring resources and time that are too often in short supply.  

But there is now a compelling model for how automation can be put to work in firms of all sizes. Within this model, a growing number of firms have proven that today’s technology is mature and reliable, and these firms have achieved clear benefits from implementing automation. They also recognize that while automation may at first be disruptive, in practice it can be implemented with minimal drama and disruption.

This is the model of a highly automated firm: in essence, a firm that has adopted technology as well as automation tools and processes to simplify, streamline and standardize their workflows and interactions. This model shows that automation is one of the most powerful tools accounting firms can deploy to become more efficient and expand their revenue margins. In this article, we will offer a closer look at what makes a highly automated firm, as well as the maturity curve firms can follow on the path to automation.

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