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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Ekeigwe tasks accountants on technology adaptation

Information Technology (IT) audit expert, Mr. Chris Ekeigwe has identified technology as a big challenge to the accounting profession in the country, urging Nigerian accountants to adapt to technology.

This, he said, is to avert accountants’ extinction due to lack of knowledge, just as his firm has disclosed plans to host an empowerment session, tagged Finance Accounting and Audit Technology Conference (FAATech) confab in May this year.

Ekeigwe, who is the chief executive officer, EDP Audit & Security Associates, also said, at a media session weekend that this is more evident because there are software packages that could be installed to take the place of accountants and do even better jobs.

“This is because it’s now possible to put a package or application up to do all the work of an accountant and get non-accountant to manage it, who over time could master process, while you get better results,” he said.

According to him, about 70 per cent of all the frauds committed in banks nowadays were facilitated through technology, stressing that this is so merely because the accountants in those banks have been left in the dust; hence their inability to manage what happens.

“You can’t compete in digital age without technology know-how. You can’t be auditing a bank manually,” he lamented.

Ekeigwe noted that for adequate digital auditing at this era, accountants need to have what he described as electronic eyes to be able to monitor and know where things have gone wrong.

Presently, he said that Nigeria lacks sufficient accountants equipped with the technology wherewithal, even as he wondered how such an accountant would cope in a computerized bank or telecom environment.

Professionals like accountants, he said, needed to be convinced that they require knowledge to survive, asserting that in an information age, wealth is essentially digital.

“So, we need to take technology approach, which means that people have to invest in themselves if we must succeed. We must invest in knowledge,” he said.

Additionally, Ekeigwe enjoined Nigerian professionals, especially accountants to begin the process by investing in the infrastructure that would make the technology change to happen.

It is in this regard, he said, that EDP in effort at proffering solution is organizing a workshop, which he tagged ‘Finance Accounting and Audit Technology (FAATech)’ conference to be hosted in Lagos in May, this year.

As said by him, FAATech 2011, has compelling motivation and message for finance, accounting and audit professionals in the country, stressing that the professions must reverse their technology incompetence, take their rightful position in information systems ecology and lead technology in organisations.

“Or risk being relegated to tawdry professions or to obscurity at the margin of society,” he said.
This, he said, should be of a serious concern to be addressed with a sense of urgency.

FAATech, Ekeigwe pointed out, seeks to galvanize finance, accounting and audit professionals, leaders and institutions to focus them on technological adaptations vital to their survival, compete and prosper in the digital age.

“We intend to catalyze and motivate positive behaviour towards strategic technology competence for finance, accounting and audit professionals,” he said.

Maintaining that the clamoured change here, goes beyond word processing and spreadsheet skills, Ekeigwe noted that those are not strategic empowering technologies because they have been commoditized.

“The urgency of the times demands that we take necessary developmental steps to inject and entrench strategic technology competences in the profile of the finance, accounting and audit professionals now,” he said.

Ekeigwe concluded by citing the former vice president of United States, Al Gore, who said that nobody competes in capitalism without capital, just as “we cannot compete in the information age without technology competence.”

The future of accounting as a profession, Ekeigwe said, depends much on the degree to which accountants become technology competent and called on professionals to stand up to the technological challenges of this time.

Remmy Nweke:
ITREALMS Online ... delivering news for ICT4D

1 comment:

Janice Clements said...

Adapting technology in such tasks can really help in a lot of ways. I'm glad you considered it.

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