As old as the invention of currency, money management itself has been an inherently important tool for humanity. Knowing where to invest, when to save, and how to make our money grow have always been important money principles and thus key roles of money management. Today, this money management we refer to is collectively embodied by the professional accounting industry.

Resource: 50 Best Accounting Schools in the USA 2016

Enter Technology

Up until the most recent of times, accounting was a more 2-dimensional practice. Although yesteryear’s accountant was concerned with achieving the same financial-wellness goals for clientele as accountants today, his or her main arsenal of tools consisted more of paper, pencils, calculators, and calendars. Today’s accountant is almost completely dependent on a very different and singular tool: accounting information technology, or AIT.

With the advent of the computer, the boundaries of information management have become practically endless. Within that same computer realm exist many categories of data use and management. IT is one of those categories and the one particularly relevant to the financial industry.

IT Defined

According to the Science and Engineering Research Support Society, information technology itself is defined as “the application of computers and telecommunications equipment to store, receive, transmit and manipulate data. This may also be described as anything that renders data, information, or perceived knowledge in any visual format through any multimedia distribution mechanism.”

An accountant’s work itself is, at its most basic core, simply the handling of financial information. Likewise, IT is the technological end of handling information, but within computer systems. Hence the perfect marriage of industries: AIT.

Real AIT in Motion

Having covered the specifics of this inherent matrimony in industries, we shift to taking a look at a few, particular examples of this concept in motion. In what ways is it used? What functions does it provide an accountant in their daily work?

Management Software

Software programs are a primary tool in today’s accountant’s toolbag. Programs such as QuickBooks and Peachtree can be found on accountant’s computers worldwide. Within such programs, the user is able to enter, track, analyze, and change data for all financial accounts for which they are responsible. Spreadsheets, graphs, calculators, and other facets of the programs provide an entire virtual office and record-keeping facility by which the accountant professional can provide the very best in money management services to clientele.

Security

Virtual security is also a considerable facet of an accountant’s daily IT dealings. With so much sensitive information being handled, methods of securing it become absolutely necessary. How the accountant is operating and personal choice often dictate the specifics of security used. However, virtual security in the field is usually provided in at least two layers. One layer is that provided by software makers of the money management programs being used by accountants. The other consists of outside security including antivirus programs, data movement monitoring, and individual database security tools.

Data Storage

Information storage is also priority in the IT functions of many modern accountants. The volume of data being stored is quite vast in some cases. Cloud storage subsequently becomes the IT solution. With such online storage options, the accountant has the ability to move data to the cloud, securely storing it outside of his or her own personal storage constraints.

This is the Future

AIT is perhaps best described as the intersection of modern technology and the world of money management. This coupling of concepts has seen single individuals as well as top corporations through all of their finite, financial dealings. Unless some new, great, and unforseeable revolution in technology and methods is to take place, this perfect marriage in the industries will continue through AIT.