100 drivers of change for the global accountancy profession

Introduction

In this study, professionals working in and close to the accountancy profession identify 100 drivers of change shaping the landscape for businesses and professional accountants over the next decade. The potential impacts and 10 resulting imperatives are explored. Opportunities are identified for accountants to adopt a more strategic and trusted role. 

Foreword

ACCA has a long history of forward looking research into the future of business and
the accountancy profession. This report, builds on ACCA’s groundbreaking
research, Where Next for the Global Economy? A View of the World 2030, and
other strategic studies published by ACCA in recent years. That study considered
issues such as the (re) distribution of global power, the scarcity and competition for
resources, shifts in global markets and new business models, leading to new
paradigms for governance and assurance.

This report thoroughly examines the key factors that ACCA and IMA members
should be thinking about to prepare for future opportunities and challenges over
the next 5–10 years. In so doing, it identifies 100 emerging drivers of change that
directly or indirectly impact business and the accountancy profession. Additionally,
it provides a number of future scenarios for the profession while sketching out the
‘must do’s’ for them to be successful over the next decade.

How will businesses need to adapt to the myriad of changes? On one hand, they
will need to develop an understanding of these forces and their future implications.
This, in turn, will enable them to weather forthcoming shocks and capitalise on new
opportunities. On the other, there is a need to assess the skills implications for
accountants. The impact of the drivers of change outlined in this research
encompasses everything from the CFO’s role and reporting standards through to
the training and development of tomorrow’s accountants.

Uncertainty and volatility are the new normal. The global landscape will continually
be reshaped by a combination of market volatility, globalisation and innovation in a
climate where shifts of wealth and power, economic uncertainty and political
transitions are also occurring. These challenges are also exacerbated by rapid
advances in science and technology, demographic changes and the emergence of
new business models. In a shifting social and economic environment, all of these
will have serious implications on businesses and the accountancy profession.
This research draws on inputs from members of the Accountancy Futures Academy,
members of IMA, and ACCA’s other Global Forums to form the basis for high-level
practical debates on how the profession can be better prepared to respond to the
changing needs of businesses.

Ng Boon Yew FCCA
Executive Chairman
Raffles Campus

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100 drivers of change for the global accountancy profession (full report)
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Five minutes on 100 drivers of change (executive summary)
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100 drivers of change: appendix
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