According to the Association for Financial Professionals (AFP), half of finance and treasury professionals believe that blockchain and IoT are going to have a significant to moderate impact on their profession.
The professional body interviewed 279 finance and treasury professionals as part of its MindShift study.
While many professionals can see major changes to their working lives rumbling over the horizon, only 11% believe that their organisation is adequality prepared for the onset of blockchain, AI, IoT and automation. 36% believe that their employer is not prepared at all, or only ‘minimally prepared’.
So, what is holding companies back? The study highlights two main factors.
Firstly, many companies simply do not have any current plans in place to adopt blockchain. Just over half (51%) of the professionals asked by AFP said there were no current plans to begin using blockchain.
Secondly, 58% reported a lack of awareness and engagement as the biggest hurdle stopping their company adopting emerging technologies.
“Heads in the sand”
The AFP hopes that the results serve as a “wake up call”, with CEO Jim Kaitz commenting:
“The benefits of new technology for finance and treasury are clear: increased productivity, reduced costs and better decision-making.
“However, the challenges are just as clear: lack of control over technology, cybersecurity, company-wide consistency, maintaining employee skills, and the potential loss of jobs. Treasury and finance needs to get their heads out of the sand and begin to grapple with these challenges.”
Only 1% of the organisations surveyed had implemented blockchain, which indicates that the technology is still very much in its infancy in terms of adoption and awareness. Among those that do know about the technology and its benefits, however, there are still a number of important doubts.
51% of those surveyed were concerned about the potential costs of implementing a blockchain solution. 42% listed obtaining buy-in from senior management as a major concern and 40% worry about blockchain’s ability to integrate with other technologies.