EP#236 ~ Unravelling the future of AccountTech with experts in the accounting and AI fields.

| Tuesday June 4

Small Biz Matters: People, Policy, Purpose ~ Episode #236
Broadcast date: 4 June 2024
Host: Alexi Boyd, Small Business Advocate & Policy Advisor
Guests: Roger Gregg, Sabby Gill, Aly Garrett

We all know that data, in the wrong hands can be destructive. But we also know the power of data to make us more efficient, save us time and the potential to make us better advisors and business owners.

There’s a tug of war going on right now. As small businesses, advisors and Fintech companies, how do we work together to simultaneously embrace data’s potential and control its misuse? How do we take into account the needs of businesses and consumers and the advisors in the middle? And who owns the data anyway?

In today’s panel we unpacked all this and more including AI's impact on small businesses and software development and what Australian policy makers can learn from the rest of the world to resolve the issues around data privacy.

We’re lucky to have such an esteemed group of guests. Our expert panel consists of leaders in the fields of accounting and small business, Fintech Founders and renowned international software, data and AI policy experts.

Roger Gregg - Hospitality leader and founder of software companies like LightYear

Sabby Gill - CEO of Dext and Chair of the international Digital Leaders professional network,

Aly Garrett FCA - All In Advisory Architect and Accounting Adventures Podcast host.

This podcast was recorded back in 2023 at the Xero Mastermind Community Precon and co-hosted in collaboration with Heather Smith, Host of Accounting Apps podcast and international speaker on AccountTech.

PEOPLE –  - How should or could advisors embrace AI to make their practices run more efficiently (yes we do include some good practical examples). What is the reality and do small businesses in different industries even have the time to implement AI and what happens to them if they get left behind?

POLICY -   Potentially, we could be looking at more regulations placed on accountants and bookkeepers as government knee-jerk-reacts to community concerns. What will be the impact on advisors and clients if regulations tighten in data privacy with the number and severity of cyber attacks?

PURPOSE -   The impact of CDR consumer data rights could have been disastrous for advisors and their clients; luckily we dodged a bullet here in Australia but it’s a great example of how too much restriction can strangle innovation. From the perspective of those who rely heavily on data to function (the advisors and their clients) what would happen?

Roger Gregg is a seasoned professional with a diverse background in management accounting, manufacturing, retail, fintech and hospitality.

Born in Northern Ireland, prior to moving to Australia, Roger was involved in the manufacturing sector in Belfast, and was Chairman of the Northern Ireland Furniture Group.

Then when he moved to Australia in 2007, Roger was recruited to be Director of Operations for Keystone Hospitality Group, taking the group to win the prestigious Australian Group Operator of the Year award in 2008, 2009 and 2010.  It was there that he saw (and felt) the need for Accounts Payable automation and in 2011 he co-founded the Accounts Payable tech start-up invitbox with his brother Chris.  Despite neither of them having any tech experience, invitbox was awarded Xero’s Emerging App of the Year for Australia in 2013, just prior to being acquired by Intuit in 2014. 

Building upon their previous success they founded Lightyear in 2018 to continue their mission of solving Accounts Payable headaches for SMEs. The company operates both domestically and internationally, with a staff of 60 offices in Belfast and Sydney, servicing 6,000 businesses across 22 countries.

In addition to Lightyear, Roger is involved in a number of hospitality businesses as a partner in House Made Hospitality, as well as helping Bondi Brewing Company take it to the big guys.

Aly Garrett FCA is a multi-award winning fellow chartered accountant, tax agent and podcast host (check out Aly & Andrew’s All Aussie Accounting Adventures) who founded All In Advisory Pty Ltd in 2018.

All In has won Boutique Firm and Start up Firm of the Year at Accountants Daily and are Xero Cloud Champions of the Year.

Aly has worked in the accounting industry for 30 years, with big, small, traditional and innovative firms and everything in between and has helped many of them work through their digital journeys.  She knows the challenges and opportunities this can present and likes to use her experience to bring positive change in our accounting and bookkeeping communities.

Sabby Gill was appointed CEO of Dext in October 2022 and brings more than 35years’ experience in the technology sector, spanning sales, operations, development, support and customer service.  He has spent his career supporting businesses of all sizes with technology that looks to unlock their potential—both at home and in international markets. Prior to Dext, Sabby was CEO of Thomas International, which is a leading talent assessment and psychometric provider.  Other past roles also included UK & Ireland Managing Director of Sage, in addition to senior executive leadership roles at Epicor, IGT, HP, CA Technologies, Oracle, PeopleSoft and Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC).Sabby currently is a member of the UK’s Digital Economy Council with Secretary of State, and the Chair of Digital Leaders Advisory Board, which has over 180,000 members across the UK.

To find out more about the best Accounting podcast out there, check it out HERE