3 Tech Trends for Professional Service Firms

Rupert Walmsley
Author
Dubai, Guernsey, Jersey
22nd January 2024
Digital Transformation

Three Tech Trends Professional Services Firms Should Keep an Eye on in 2024

2023 was a big year for tech in the professional sector, and 2024 has plenty more in store.

As always, the industry is evolving. Trends such as artificial intelligence (AI), bespoke app development, and Microsoft 365 are at the forefront of this transformation.

Dubai Managing Director, Rupert Walmsley, explores the three tech trends for professional services organisations to take advantage of this year.

Artificial Intelligence

According to Nvidia’s ‘State of AI Report’, more than 90% of finance companies use or are considering using AI in their operations. Many finance companies have used AI for some time to combat fraud, forecast trends, and provide customer support. GPT and other large language models are another step in this development. Earlier this month, Deloitte launched an AI chatbot to boost employee productivity. However, AI isn’t solely for large organisations like the ‘Big Four’. Smaller professional practices will benefit, too.

While AI can’t replace trustful and solid professional relationships between accountants and clients, it can automate specific tasks. As Stuart Miller, Head of Product Compliance & Industry Engagement at Xero, pointed out:

“Today, [Data analysis] tasks are handled by AI and technology, which allow us to focus more on advisory work and adding value to help clients thrive”.

Despite this, only a quarter of financial organisations see themselves as industry-leading when using AI. Throughout 2024, we expect more organisations to consult experts on AI and make the most of it.

Bespoke app development

In 2020, the global market for bespoke app development was over USD 24 billion and is expected to increase by more than 20% by 2030. This growth is unsurprising. Many companies prefer in-house software solutions due to how cost-effective and scalable they can be.

For professional firms, these benefits go further. Bespoke apps help meet niche and technical challenges, including better following local compliance and regulatory laws in offshore markets and smaller jurisdictions.

Likewise, bespoke apps are far more secure than third-party equivalents. Last year, 53% of all data breaches related to third parties, with software accounting for 23% of all instances. Data security is crucial for finance companies handling sensitive personal and business client information. As we head into 2024 and the risk of cyber-attacks increases, thanks to AI, we can expect more finance firms to move software functions in-house with bespoke application development.

Microsoft 365 

The last two years have seen significantly more professional service companies adopt Microsoft 365 for their digital operations. It’s unsurprising, as Microsoft 365 user base grew more than 20% during the pandemic and has maintained a solid market lead since.

For example, Microsoft 365’s Copilot gives it a massive productivity boost over competitors by mixing generative AI directly into Word, Outlook, and Excel. This means tasks such as analysing data, generating reports, and speaking to clients can be done faster.

Microsoft is also launching industry-specific AI tools. At the start of this year, it launched Microsoft Cloud for Retail, which uses AI to automate retail processes. The Microsoft AI for Finance research project is planning something similar for the financial sector.

2024 will likely see more developments by 365 for specific industries, and professional service companies would be wise to take advantage of these opportunities when they happen.

Looking ahead

2024 promises another year of technological advancements for the professional services sector. With the continued growth of AI, bespoke app development, and Microsoft 365, organisations have plenty of opportunities to stay ahead of the curve and streamline their operations.

If you would like to learn about digital training, bespoke app development, or Microsoft 365 for your business, book a free consultation here.

Rupert Walmsley

Rupert joined Resolution IT as the Managing Director for our Dubai branch after an expansive career within the industry and success in running his own business.

As Dubai Managing Director, Rupert’s primary responsibility is ensuring Resolution IT’s clients receive the highest level of service from the team. Another priority for Rupert is helping clients achieve their business goals through strategic guidance and best-in-class, secure technology solutions.

As Rupert always says, secure systems + safe data = happy clients.

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