Generative AI in business: Top 5 use cases to know, including accounting

/ Posted By - Bradleys Accountants / Categories - Business start-ups

Few topics are as polarising as the Generative AI in business debate. While some hail it as the biggest game-changer since the Internet, others criticise it for poor-quality output and the many ethical concerns related to its data usage.

Keeping opinions aside, though, the fact is that whether you’re a startup, an SME, or a CIS contractor, Generative AI tools can simplify your workflows in multiple ways, often without you needing to spend a lot of time. Let’s find out how:

Highlights of the UK Spring Budget 2024

1. Task automation

Data entry. Lead mining. Cold emailing. Content scheduling. These are vital tasks for any business, but they can be extremely time-consuming and often detract from the more strategic tasks.

Generative AI in business can handle these much faster and more accurately than humans, leaving you free to focus on the most important things. Some tasks to automate include:

  • Lead generation from website forms, social media pages, and elsewhere so that you have a ready list of leads that you can then nurture
  • Data extraction and entry of any kind, such as scraping customer reviews from multiple platforms to analyse customer sentiment
  • Email marketing by crafting personalised emails at scale
  • Automatic content scheduling across multiple platforms

2. Content creation

One of the first and most common uses of Generative AI in business is its ability to create content for various platforms.

While it cannot completely substitute for human creativity, the technology can certainly save you a lot of time by sharing tailored content at scale, designed to appeal to your target audience.

You can use Generative AI to write short blog posts, longer articles, social media posts and press releases, all with the proper structure and keywords to reach the right people. Always make sure you check the content for accuracy and put your own spin on it.

With suitable prompts, Generative AI in business can even generate high-quality images and videos—thanks to DALL·3 and Sora, both inventions of OpenAI.

3. SEO

Generative AI can quickly analyse large volumes of data and identify relevant patterns, allowing you to know exactly which keywords to target. It can also study your website’s layout and offer recommendations on improving your structure and navigation to make it more user-friendly.

This technology can keep tabs on how your website’s SEO is doing over time, monitoring KPIs such as keyword rankings, backlink profiles, and changes in Google algorithms and sharing alerts as necessary so that you can proactively make adjustments to stay ahead of the curve.

4. Hyper-personalisation

In its capacity to analyse and predict, Generative AI in business can be a valuable asset for creating hyper-personalised experiences. You can use it to study customer behaviour, simulate different scenarios and determine the most effective response for each.

The more personalised the campaign, the more conversions it will drive, and your brand loyalty will increase.

In addition, chatbots powered by Generative AI can provide 24×7 personalised communication to customers, answering any queries they may have and undertaking core actions on their behalf, like scheduling a return or editing an order.

5. Risk mitigation and compliance

Generative AI in business enables you to adopt proactive risk mitigation measures by watching for potentially compromising behaviours, such as improper data sharing practices or poor data governance.

This is beneficial on two counts:

  • First, compliance is paramount today, and many industries have strict compliance standards about how businesses can use customer/partner data.
  • Second, prevention is much less expensive than cure, especially for small businesses watching their finances.

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    6. Accounting

    a. Data analysis and back office functions

    The technology can offer important insights into how your business can minimise its back office costs and better plan its finances.

    For example, if you’re an online retail company, you can analyse your procurement and inventory management processes using Generative AI.

    By examining historical data and identifying patterns, AI can suggest optimal stock levels and reorder points, reducing carrying costs and minimising stock outs.

    b. Fast and accurate tax research

    Tax research tools powered by AI algorithms can promptly and accurately provide authoritative tax-related results from sources vetted by human experts.

    For instance, if you’re a tax consulting services provider managing global clients, you can quickly sift through the latest tax regulations and cross-border tax treaties using Generative AI to provide up-to-date, accurate, and compliant tax planning support.

    c. Document processing and analysis

    Generative AI in accounting can quickly extract data and relevant insights from financial documents like annual reports, helping with quicker decision-making.

    You can, for instance, process thousands of annual reports from potential investment targets, extracting key financial indicators, risk factors, and growth metrics to make informed decisions about where to allocate funds for the best ROI.

    d. Bookkeeping automation

    Bookkeeping is a critical accounting function that lends itself easily to automation. Suitably trained Generative AI tools can categorise transactions, reconcile ledgers and even pull up tax returns, all quickly and error-free.

    The technology can automatically categorise expenses from bank feeds, reconcile transactions with invoices and receipts, and generate quarterly tax returns. This automation saves hours of manual bookkeeping each week and eliminates errors.

    e. Report generation

    Generative AI in accounting can convert available data into structured, relevant reports with visualisations as necessary to convey insights appropriately.

    For example, if you’re a non-profit organisation, you can leverage Generative AI to generate monthly financial reports.

    The AI can compile data from various sources, including donations received, operational expenses, and funding, and then present it in easy-to-understand visual formats.

    This speeds up the reporting process and makes it easier for you to understand the financial health of your business.

    Benefits of Generative AI in accounting

    1. Time-saving

    Generative AI can be implemented to gather and cleanse data, making it available for internal and external audits and running advanced analytics. This technology automates checks for completeness of fields, duplications, and validations.

    Moreover, Generative AI processes data populations much more accurately and efficiently than humans, who are prone to errors. This is a major advantage, especially when dealing with large data sets.

    2. Seamless risk assessment

    This technology automates the initial data gathering and classification process for risk assessment. It collates feedback to identify core trends, allowing you to run control testing, especially in standardised areas.

    Generative AI in business decreases the time required to detect anomalies in data transactions, enabling focused discussions on trend analysis and deep dives into potential risks.

    3. Expanded audit capabilities

    Generative AI in accounting enables you to move beyond traditional preventive methods and focus on continuous auditing, reducing the length of the audit cycle.

    When the data-gathering process is automated, the system corrects process gaps and errors in real-time, notifying you of any anomalies. This reduces the overall burden and allows for closer monitoring of controls and compliance.

    4. Effective management of analytical procedures

    In revenue audits, Generative AI assists you by accessing secure data sources to extract valuable evidence related to auditing, including listings of current and previous years’ sales and trial balances. If you do this step manually, it’ll take your hours.

    On the other hand, AI tools can calculate total sales per listing and compare these to trial balance totals. They can estimate material differences in revenue amounts and generate alerts if discrepancies exceed thresholds, making your job a lot easier.

    5. On-demand visibility into division performance

    The power of Generative AI in business is undeniable in areas such as:

    • Identifying open items like follow-up emails and documentation status
    • Automating the creation of report templates and audit committee decks
    • Tracking progress against the project plan
    • Monitoring KPIs of the annual audit plan

    This technology enables real-time project tracking and reporting, enhancing the visibility of business performance both against the plan and within specific KPIs.

    Harness Generative AI in business for the ultimate transformation

    For small business owners especially, time is money, and Generative AI helps you save on one while making a whole lot more of the other.

    By automating routine tasks and efficiently handling large volumes of data, Generative AI can streamline functions across the board and make life easier for everyone in your business.

    And the best part – whatever people might say, the benefits of GenAI will never replace human creativity and strategic thinking. Therefore, you’d do well to embrace Generative AI as a valuable aide and enjoy its competitive advantage.

    Whether you want to learn more about this technology or receive simple yet efficient help in bookkeeping, company accounts, Corporation Tax returns, payroll, Self Assessment tax returns, and more, get in touch with Bradleys Accountants.

    We measure our success by how happy our clients are with our bespoke accounting services, and we know we won’t disappoint you.

    So give us a call at 020-8303-1287 or fill out this contact form. We’re a friendly customer support team that’s always just a click away. Speak soon!

    Final words

    Opinions are mixed on the new budget from all quarters, and several moves may be completely unexpected for small businesses who were hoping for more support.

    As a UK small business owner, it is vital that you speak to your accountant about exactly how the new changes affect you, so that you can stay prepared when they come into force. And we at Bradleys Accountants are forever ready to help you with any query. Contact us today.

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