PwC was awarded the 2023 ‘Digital Innovation of the Year Award’ at the 12th annual International Accounting Forum & Awards in London, June 29, for its suite of AI services in support of its global auditors.
PwC’s award submission, entitled: “Next generation AI services for the next generation auditor,” focuses on PwC’s industry break-through capabilities like predictive analytics and AI-assisted financial statement disclosure checking, as well as capabilities exploring the potential of generative AI. A culture of innovation across the PwC network of firms continues to drive the creation of tech-enabled solutions which address both local and global needs, including the technologies underlying this suite of AI services for PwC’s next generation audit. The annual awards’ event brought together “global accounting firms along with regulators and industry bodies, consultancies and advisors, law firms, and technology providers to engage on the key themes impacting the sector and the opportunities for growth,” according to the event’s website.
“PwC is investing heavily in AI in our audit. This generational leap forward in the way we deliver our work will augment the capabilities of our professionals and free them up to do more of what they do best.”
Zia Paton, Digital Services Leader, PwC in the Caribbean, said:
“As a human-led, tech-powered organisation, PwC has the global reach that clients expect from a next generation professional services organisation Our AI-enabled, data-driven services — including generative AI and anomaly detection — help to solve age-old challenges, which in the past may have burdened internal teams and client organisations, as they support the audit process.
PwC’s recognised AI audit capabilities
PwC’s proprietary predictive analytics employs cloud-based machine learning and advanced statistical models to enable PwC auditors with the ability to predict client revenue. This technology enables full population analysis of transactions that make up a financial statement line item balance, and includes built-in data reliability and model validation checks helping PwC teams develop a better understanding of clients’ businesses, while delivering a more tailored, quality audit.
PwC’s proprietary AI-assisted financial statement disclosure checking uses AI capabilities to augment the review of financial statement disclosures, including sustainability and climate reporting, reducing turnaround times, enhancing quality and unburdening the auditing process.
PwC’s exploration of Generative AI and AI-enabled search functionality seeks to provide auditors with the ability to pinpoint relevant information with accuracy and precision and generate relevant summaries. The prototype capability enables PwC professionals to search through significant volumes of accounting and auditing guidance, or customise their experience by uploading and querying their own documentation – eliminating the need for manual search.
PwC has been pioneering AI and professional services
PwC has a history of integrating AI in the delivery of audit services. In 2017, PwC made a significant investment in pioneering AI for audit by building a revolutionary bot that used AI and machine learning to ‘x-ray’ a business, analysing billions of data points in milliseconds – seeing what humans can’t – and applying judgement to detect anomalies in the general ledger. Called GL.ai, it was named the ‘Audit Innovation of the Year’ by the International Accounting Bulletin in 2017.
Following PwC’s award-winning momentum, the firm’s work on Cash.ai won the 2019 ‘Audit Innovation of the Year’ from the International Accounting Bulletin. Cash.ai uses AI to automatically read, understand and test client documents, including cash balances, bank reconciliation, bank confirmation letters, foreign exchange and the financial condition of the bank.
At PwC, we are already transforming how our 328,000 strong global workforce delivers everything from audit, to tax and legal services, and consulting.
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