Building a more inclusive Accounting and Finance Industry: Empowering diverse talent into accountancy and finance roles.
Inclusivity has become an essential aspect of the modern competitive market. Businesses are now looking forward to hiring individuals from marginalized groups. That includes people of different races, genders, and, especially, abilities. The accountancy and finance sector has been one of the most prominent industries to promote inclusivity. It gives a good message to the public, empowers unemployed people, and solidifies your company’s credibility.
Today, the financial services industry offers frontline job positions to mentally and physically disabled people. That is one of the reasons why this market has grown exponentially. It has tapped the untapped potential of hiring people with disabilities and giving them suitable roles to expand their workforce. But how does it happen, and why is it even necessary?
Let’s look at everything regarding inclusivity in the finance industry!
The Rise of Financial Inclusion
Financial inclusion is a term that has recently developed hype in the market. It means making financial services and products accessible to a broader audience, including people with disabilities and businesses employing such people. This change in policy also benefits customers who usually have difficulty getting financial services.
The concept of financial inclusion can be summarized in one word: equality. The aim is to make financial services and products equal to all demographics. While it benefits consumers who are in marginalized groups, it also helps employees with disabilities. Financial inclusion empowers the engagement of differently abled individuals to participate in the workforce. That includes different financial sectors, like accounting, banking, taxation, etc.
Moreover, financial inclusion also relies heavily on digital financing. The technological advancement in the finance sector is remarkable. Today, most of the essential tasks are automated or handled by efficient tools. That is why the global fintech industry has crossed $179 billion market value.
But how does tech help in financial inclusion? Firstly, it makes challenging and time-consuming tasks significantly simpler and easier. Now, people can handle their online banking from their smartphones. Similarly, employees with disabilities can use the fintech advancements to their benefit. It makes the workload more manageable and accessible for them.
Why Is Financial Inclusion Necessary?
Financial inclusion has made great strides in various countries. It continues to progress in today’s competitive market. But why is it necessary? Let’s see why!
Hiring people with disabilities sends a positive message about your business. It encourages other unemployed individuals to join your financial services. Moreover, it also attracts more customers to your business, especially from the marginalized demographics.
It is important to note that the unemployment rate among the differently abled community is very high. But you can put in work from your end to encourage employment and inclusion of people with disabilities.
You might be surprised, but financial inclusion has a direct impact on the national economy. It provides opportunities to the disabled community with services and perks like credit, job security, insurance, and savings. This factor reduces poverty and prohibits discrimination against marginalized individuals. As more and more people participate in a country’s financial services, the economy snowballs.
Do you want to expand your financial business workforce? You can do so by employing people with disabilities. The differently abled individuals can participate in your workforce and handle some essential tasks.
They can increase the overall efficiency of business operations with their creativity, problem-solving skills, and productivity. These factors are vital, especially for small businesses to grow.
The financial industry utilizes modern technologies and tools to some extent. However, the participation of people with disabilities promotes digital utilization. Most differently abled people rely on technology to handle business operations. That benefits you with increased efficiency and saving your resources.
You can use this opportunity to introduce essential tools in your business, like speech recognition, text-to-speech applications, etc. These can help people with disabilities to handle tasks more effectively.
The Use of Technology in Financial Inclusion
As mentioned earlier, tech has been a steppingstone for financial inclusion. Even the World Bank states that the COVID-19 crisis opened doors for the digital revolution. Today, almost every financial service utilizes technology. It also helps make business operations easier and more accessible for people with disabilities.
Which technologies are part of financial inclusion? Here are all of them:
The rise of mobile banking can be observed in every country. It helps people with disabilities by cutting the need for physical banks. Instead, they can manage all the essential tasks like funds transfer, bill payment, etc. They can also check their account balances with a single click.
The finance industry understands the lack of facilities in public banking. They have also developed technologies, like Agent banking. It is a mobile app that offers financial services, like withdrawals, funds, and deposits. This agent works as a remote intermediary to provide these services. And that also opens doors for employment for people with disabilities. They can work as these agents to provide remote support for marginalized demographics.
One thing to consider is conducting training sessions before hiring employees. That also applies to employing people with disabilities. Financial education apps have essential tools that are useful for this purpose. They can help train your new workforce regardless of physical, mental, or emotional impairment. That is why apps like Tiller Money, Personal Capital, and Mint have millions of downloads in the Google Play Store.
Simple technologies, like a laptop or tablet, can be utilized to empower employees with disabilities. If you don’t have facilitated transport to offer, don’t worry. You can revamp your company policy to allow working from home for differently abled people.
They can get work done more effectively in a familiar environment, like their homes. This simple tip also cuts the need to redesign your place’s architecture to make it more accessible.
According to several studies, traditional banking is expected to become obsolete in the coming years. That’s mainly because of the rise of digital currencies and blockchain. Today, cryptocurrencies are all the buzzes. These are also integrated into the modern financial market to assist consumers.
People with disabilities can get a better experience using blockchain and cryptocurrencies. They don’t have physical limitations and are not bound to a national currency. Moreover, they offer a quicker transaction speed, increased security, and better convenience.
Challenges In Making the Financial Industry More Inclusive
Financial inclusion has seen a rise globally. However, it also has many challenges to overcome in today’s world. Let’s look at them:
The unemployment rate in disabled communities is high due to the lack of education. Not many businesses are willing to conduct training sessions, workshops, seminars, and webinars to train their employees. They consider that this will be another expense. That is one of the leading causes why new employees with disabilities hesitate to apply for a job.
Financial inclusion is an excellent initiative by almost all countries. However, some parts of the world still don’t know financial inclusion. Their traditional values have led them not to trust financial services. That also leads to distrust of the digital revolution behind this inclusion. The major problem is that industry has not identified this problem area. Hence, a suitable solution has not yet been thought out.
The 4 Pillars of Financial Inclusion
The concept of financial inclusion stands on four pillars. These are also known as the “areas” of financial inclusion. They are not limited to people with disabilities. Instead, these four pillars are for all marginalized demographics, including women and racially discriminated individuals. Let’s see these areas of financial inclusion:
As mentioned earlier, women’s empowerment is also a part of financial inclusion. Focusing on gender-specific financial needs, companies can create programs, products, and initiatives that help eliminate the gender gap in this industry.
A disabled individual is more likely to have a credit score with a limited history. Companies with financial inclusion aim to remove this traditional concept of credit scoring. Instead, they utilize rental history, bill payments, and other such metrics to promote better opportunities and replace the existing credit scoring system.
People with disabilities may find traditional banking challenging. However, financial inclusion makes it accessible by promoting security and savings. They enable affordable services that empower participation from people, including employees and consumers with disabilities.
Lastly, it is important to educate our marginalized groups about financial literacy. It will help develop the skills and qualifications required to take better opportunities within the industry. This simple factor enhances problem-solving abilities and enables newbies to make better decisions. Hence, it is a MUST for every financial company to promote literacy in its new workforce of differently abled individuals.
The Future of Inclusivity in The Finance Industry
The finance sector has benefitted greatly from its inclusive policies. These benefits are expected to grow by employing more people with disabilities. As a result, the unemployment rate will come down exponentially within the marginalized population. New technologies, including blockchain and artificial intelligence, further back this significant change.
The best part about financial inclusion with technologies is its data privacy. The latest technologies aim to focus on security by implementing better protocols. This way, employees, as well as consumers with disabilities, will not face data breaches and other security threats.
The short answer is yes! The governments of the UK, the US, and Australia have been openly supportive of financial inclusion. Furthermore, government-backed finance organizations have also adopted inclusive policies to embrace this change. It is a sign of support by the governments of various countries.
Financial inclusion relies heavily on technological advancements. Although it is a good sign, many companies may not view it that way. That’s because of the biggest risk: data privacy and integrity. Blockchain, digital currencies, and mobile banking have observed various cyberattack reports. But that is something financial inclusion aims to eliminate by implementing more robust protocols.
Yes, people with disabilities are welcomed in the finance industry and its sub-sectors, like accounting. A major part of these jobs is reporting, monitoring, and management. These tasks don’t require frequent movement, making them suitable for physically disabled people. At the same time, one can easily get familiar with the nature of these jobs, proving ideal for mentally impaired people.
PWDS stands for Persons with Disabilities. It is a part of financial inclusion to make banking accessible for employees and customers with physical and mental disabilities. This way, the finance industry can spread its services and products to a broader population.
Q: What is the role of Fintech in financial inclusion?
Fintech plays a key role in financial inclusion by providing scalable, cost-effective, and value-driven solutions to financial institutes. It is important to know the rise of banking and other financial services by mobile phones. The fintech industry understands this growth and provides efficient solutions for the marginalized groups. This way, they can handle their workload and buy financial services without inconvenience.
The rise in inclusivity in finance has been extremely positive for customers and employees. How is that? Well, consumers can find more accessible options for banking and other financial services. They can achieve better methods than traditional financial services.
Similarly, people with disabilities can also find better job opportunities. They can work in a finance company’s frontlines by utilizing technologies and tools of this digital era. To conclude, it is safe to say that the future of financial inclusion looks bright. With the advancement of better technologies and by enlightening a broader marginalized population, these financial organizations will directly benefit the country’s economy and minimize poverty.
If you found this article helpful, please go to the rest of the website for more information about accounting software, and financial topics in International Accounting, Audit, Taxation, Financial Planning, Cloud Software, and Financial Technologies (Fintech).