By Rubendran Sathupathy
Professor Teeroven Soobaroyen, Deputy Dean of Partnership and Professor EBS – Accounting at the University of Essex, spoke regarding “The Role of the Accountant in Tackling Uncertainty and Change” at INTI International University on 18th October.
He came with Ms. Aruna Dhevi Vijiaretnam, Deputy Marketing Manager at the University of Essex.
The Industry and Student Experience Taskforce in the Faculty of Business and Communications (FBC) organized the lecture.
Although most people think of numbers and money when it comes to accounting, Prof. Teeroven explained that “accountants are becoming increasingly concerned about the non-financial side” of accounting. For example, the satisfaction of companies’ customers and staff and the efficiency of their product deliveries.
“These are all metrics that we (accountants) need to measure, not just profits,” he said.
He cited Garry Carnegie, Professor of Accounting at RMIT University, stating “Accounting is a technical, social and moral practice concerned with the sustainable utilization of resources and proper accountability to stakeholders to enable the flourishing of organizations, people and nature.”
Prof. Teeroven warned that accountants hold “enormous power” over decisions and “there will be consequences” if they misuse it.
“For instance, the stock market might react negatively, and employees may be fired due to the company losing money. The company might also be unable to pay the suppliers’ bills, ” he said
He emphasized the importance of accountability in accounting and how accountants have a role to speak out against injustice.
“As accountants, our role is to communicate information to the market or other people about what is happening. For example, the gender pay gap ratio is a required reporting standard in the United Kingdom,” he said.
Prof. Teeroven discussed the evolution of accounting. Previously, accountants had to manually calculate transactions and balance them. “Now, we have automated software that automatically captures transactions and payments to make sure everything is accounted for,” he said.
“The role of an accountant is not to process unnecessary information but to analyze and communicate relevant information to your organization.”
Dr. Yip Foon Yee, Head of Program at FBC, presented Mr. Teeroven with a certificate after the event.
125 people, including students and committee members, attended the event.