Accounting firms are under immense pressure. Finding talent is challenging, and so is living up to client expectations. Fortunately, the latest advancements in artificial intelligence provide a way to enhance productivity.
Generative AI (GenAI) is a game-changer, offering productivity boosts comparable to the impact of yesteryear’s electronic spreadsheets. I'm already leveraging GenAI chatbots to complete tasks with 50% or greater efficiency—and you can, too! You just need to know how to start.
It's important to know which tasks AI chatbots are most suitable, because number-crunching is not their strong suit. GenAI chatbots, such as ChatGPT and Claude, excel in language-related tasks. You might think that makes these chatbots unsuitable for accounting, but you'd be wrong. There's plenty of reading and writing in accounting.
For an industry built on asking and answering questions, GenAI is a game-changer. These chatbots can understand nuanced questions in everyday language and provide highly accurate responses. In addition, they can search the web for information and seamlessly incorporate it into their answers.
Answering repetitive client and team member questions is an obvious application. Document analysis is another clear fit. But the possibilities extend much further. Let’s explore three ways AI chatbots can save time for accountants.
#1: Answering client questions
Here's an example of how ChatGPT saved me a lot of time by answering a real-life question.
A close friend of mine—let's call him Mike—sent me a text saying, "I have an accounting question to ask. Lemme know when you have 5 minutes for a call."