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How Will AI Transform The Financial Sector And Its Jobs?

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“The last 10 years have been about building a world that is mobile-first however in the next 10 years, we will shift to a world that is AI-first.” quoted by the CEO of Google.

A Brief About Artificial Intelligence

The capabilities of AI become well-known after AlphaGo Zero, an AI-based computer programme that became a master in the Chinese famous board Game Go in three days after defeating other computer models that had already beat the best players in the world.

AI in Finance
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With the advent of Artificial Intelligence, a machine is made to learn and self-evolve from its current environment and adjust to become future-ready. AI has seen tremendous acceptance and growth because of the exponential rise in digital data and limitations in the computing power of existing systems. At present, AI is bringing a considerable change in different industries including and is not limited to healthcare services, the education sector, financial services, manufacturing and more.

Currently, in financial services, we are sitting on a huge amount of data and a lot of time. People are clueless about understanding the value of the insights that can be churned out and helping one get that competitive edge over others. AI in banking services, for example, is transforming the industry by automating a lot of manual and repetitive processes.

One such in-process example is the financial assessment automation that happens during the underwriting process of loans where accurate analysis is of more importance and helps reduce TAT and NPAs for the banks because of an accurate analysis of the creditworthiness of the borrower. 

Problem In Finance And Accounting

  • Dealing with a huge number of transactions due to millions of data points
  • Lots of time spent in manual and repetitive work
  • Accuracy in keeping records of each and every transaction
  • A lot of mundane transactional activities
  • Lack of quick actionable insights

Benefits Of AI In Finance And Accounting

AI in finance in the banking sector can help professionals by giving them more time to focus on their primary work and counsel their clients rather than spending time on transactional activities.

  • Increase in productivity and high quality of results with high transparency
  • Reduce the workload of finance team professionals
  • More accurate financial statement analysis
  • Can efficiently complete tasks such as extraction of data and structuring of the information
  • Saves time with the reduction of manual work when used in accounting
  • Automate procedures of accounting
AI in Accounting
Image has been provided by the author.

Functions Of AI In Finance And Accounting

  • Can replicate human tasks:
    AI can do human tasks that otherwise take a lot of time. These tasks include data entry and data reconciliation. Using AI can also reduce errors that occur in these tasks. Bots are the new thing that has already become prominent in customer service as well as chatbots and voice bots.
  • Reduce frauds:
    Each and every transaction can be tracked more efficiently and any fraudulent activity can be identified more accurately. With AI in finance, a professional can easily analyse different relationships, find out suspicious transactions and report it in a visual manner.
  • Invoices Processing work:
    Downloading invoices after going through emails and then manual extraction of data takes a lot of time. AI can automate the whole process of invoice processing and improve efficiency and productivity with zero chance of error. This does also compliment AI in accounting to streamline and automate the complete process. CART, an AI-driven software, saves time and improve productivity by 100% accurate extraction of data and invoice processing.
  • On-boarding of suppliers and procurement processes:
    AI can help in automated verification of tax details and in credit assessment so as to help in selecting the correct supplier. AI can also help in data segregation and categorisation for effective vendor management.
  • During Audit Processes:
    AI can help in the assessment of risk and tracking each and every record of transactions. With AI in finance, one can automate tasks (like data collection, following rules) and also find errors in case of any deviation from pre-defined rules. AI can save time by helping in analysing digital files with the highest accuracy and improved analysing capabilities.
  • Reconciliation of data:
    Reconciliation of data is of prime importance in places where highly confidential and sensitive data is being stored and is related to a high value of financial transactions. For example, to maintain accurate accounting records or generate required ABOR or IBOR reports for an asset management firm, reconciliation of data is very important. Genesis, a new age Investment Management platform, helps in data reconciliation and provides up-to-date reporting services according to requirements.
  • During Company expense management:
    Using AI, advanced rules with exception management can be created in expense management that helps to keep the overall costs of an organisation in check.
  • Follow-up process automation:
    Tracking of outstanding invoices can be done and the follow-up process can be automated with the help of an AI-driven Chat and Voice bot. Chatbots have also proven to be successful in handling customer service escalation or service management.
  • Assessment of Risk:
    AI can analyse a vast amount of data and also automate the processes to get the risk assessment done more efficiently. A relevant use case is the risk assessment that happens during the underwriting process of a loan application that needs to complement the repayment capacity of the borrower in order to propose the correct sanction amount and condition for approval. An even more advanced use is to identify the probability of default of a borrower by advanced AI- and ML-based models.
  • In the trading field:
    Prediction plays an important role in trading and I can do it by analysing a vast amount of past data. The prediction improves with time since AI, with its machine learning combination, self-evolves from its experience and results in even more accurate results. According to a person’s personality (high-risk taker or low-risk taker), the AI system can suggest when and what to buy, sell or hold in an overall proposition to have a system recommended robotics-based portfolio.
  • Personal Expense Management:
    An AI-driven system can help individuals understand their spending behaviour and better plan for the future that aligns well with a saving goal.
AI in finance and accounting
Image has been provided by the author.

AI in finance and accounting is still in the embryonic stages. However, we can say that AI has already started transforming the finance sector in a big way and companies that will embrace the new AI-age will flourish in coming times. Novel Patterns is a product-driven organisation enthusiastic to leverage AI and machine-learning techniques to solve real-life problems and build solid use cases.

One such product is Credit Assessment and Robotics Transformation (C.A.R.T), which helps in the automation of financial assessment happening during the underwriting process of a loan application, hence improving efficiency and reducing the turn-around time, leaving no room for the process to be error-prone.

As the AI revolution is rapidly overtaking traditional and tedious methods, we still cannot circumvent the human intelligence that will be required to efficiently supervise these technological marvels. The success mantra will be to pair AI machines and people together to get a more efficient and better future.

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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