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Industry 4.0: Employers' Expectations of Accounting Graduates and Its Implications on Teaching and Learning Practices

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Document pages: 11 pages

Abstract: This study aims to examine employers expectations of knowledge and skills in accounting graduates before hiring them. Using a qualitative approach on accounting practitioners and academics, this study shows that the expectations employers place on accounting students in the Industry 4.0 environment is set to change significantly, particularly in technologies used in the preparation, reporting and dissemination of financial information. Specifically, this study showcases the strong views expressed by a panel of experts comprising accounting practitioners, particularly on the subjects of job redundancies and the degree of replacement of human activities by electronic devices and machines. The replacement of physical human activities by machines is therefore expected. In addition, accounting practitioners see the need for accounting graduates to focus on continuous learning and education, particularly in acquiring knowledge and skills in IT. Hence, there is a need for academics and universities to incorporate various accounting technologies and simulations that are applicable to the Industry 4.0 environment, in their teaching and learning activities. This study contributes to existing education literature by providing new findings on the expectations of employers of future accounting graduates. In addition, this study contributes to the further understanding of academics and universities in strategizing ways and innovating new teaching and learning approaches so that accounting graduates employability can be enhanced and the needs of the current market for accountants can be accommodated.

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