ChatBots in Accounting
ChatBots are sophisticated computer programs used to communicate either via text or audio. A ChatBot is designed to mimic the way a human would communicate with another person while having a conversation. These Bots are being used in several industries to help facilitate communication with customers. As the demands of customers increases, the ability for a company to meet these demands is often not possible. However, many companies have found the use of Bots to provide basic customer service needs, to be a cost effective way to meet their customer’s demands. In the business of accounting, there have been many recent developments of ways to use this technology to perform a number of tasks.
Providing Customer Service
One of the ways ChatBots have been used in the accounting industry is by answering customer’s inquiries. Many companies have found that customers often ask the same types of questions. As a result, a ChatBot program is able to communicate with a customer over text to answer a number of questions they may have. One example of this is in the tax accounting arena. Many people dread doing their own taxes, mainly because they do not understand all of the rules and regulations surrounding personal taxes. However, services like AskMyUncleSam provide an opportunity for customers to ask their personal tax questions through chat. After their question is asked, the computer program is able to search for keywords in a database and provide answers to the customer.
ChatBots and Payroll
Many companies have a payroll department to help ensure their employees payroll needs are met. However, many companies have a significant number of employees, who have some common payroll questions which take away from the other payroll accounting duties. As a result, larger companies have looked for ways to answer their employee’s questions without taking time away from other duties. The use of a ChatBot program can help these companies to answer questions about how to complete direct deposit information, completing a W-4 form, or questions about pay periods and pay dates. The use of these programs make it possible for the accounting department to complete other tasks and only get involved in answering questions that are more complex than what the Bot is prepared to answer.
ChatBots and Tracking Finances
Another recent development in the use of ChatBots is in the ability to submit expenses and track receipts. The user is also able to track outstanding invoices so the user can follow up with customers to ensure invoices are paid in a timely manner. An example of this would be when a ChatBot allow the user to ask a question, like, “Do I have any outstanding invoices?” The program then is able to search the finance information to locate any outstanding invoices and communicates the findings with the user. As a result, the ability to track expenses is able to be completed quickly and accurately.
There is no telling what is next in the way ChatBots are going to be used in the accounting world to make the accounting process easier. The possibilities are endless as the technology continues to evolve daily. Only time will tell how ChatBots will continue to infiltrate the accounting industry.