In an increasingly data-rich and technology-driven world, finance teams must have the ability to analyse and understand large quantities of data and provide evidence-based insights in making decisions.
Data analytics and data science skills are showing the biggest growth in demand in an increasingly digitised economy, and finance professionals are perfectly placed to upskill in this area.
ICAEW Malaysia, in collaboration with KAPLAN, worked with the Accountant General’s Department of Malaysia to upskill 20 accounting staff from various ministries – including the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation – to undertake the ICAEW Data Analytics certification to provide opportunities for more business and finance personnel at the government to master technology and data.
The ICAEW Data Analytics course is specifically tailored around advanced approaches to interrogating and understanding data, and allows the learner to play a pivotal role in combining commercial acumen and business knowledge with data analytics expertise.
The entire course is conducted online and hence provided flexibility for working adults to schedule sessions around their busy work schedule.
In a recent certificate awards ceremony witnessed by Deputy Accountant General, Haji Rozaimi Idris and the Directors of various units in the AG’s Department, the 20 accounting staff were presented the ICAEW Data Analytics certificates (after completing a 3-months intensive course) by Loh Wei Yuen, Head of Malaysia, ICAEW and coordinated by Zaiti Waddell of KAPLAN. These staff are now certified and have the ability to analyse larger datasets and are better equipped to provide evidence-based insights and assurance in making decisions.
Data analysis crucial in decision-making
Data analysis has had a profound transformational impact on governments around the world and exerts a fundamental structural impact throughout society.
While the use of data in the public sector is not new, the potential and actual use of data applications affects aspects of the theoretical and practical considerations of decision-making in the public sector. This is driven not only by the data revolution but also the accompanying development of advanced analytics.
Ever-changing technological advancements also means that having robust data analysis skills is essential. Finance professionals have an increasing opportunity to play a vital role in harnessing and making sense of data, by providing evidence-based, forward-looking insights and assurance that support decision making.
The Accountant General’s Department of Malaysia is leading the charge and providing a new skill-set for finance professionals within the government sector. The application of data in government has almost limitless potential for providing more efficient, effective, and trustworthy public services.
“The ICAEW Data Analytics Certification Programme is one of several certifications in which many accountants in the civil service had enrolled under The Accountant General’s Department. It is part of our effort in ensuring our people are equipped with the knowledge not only to fulfill their everyday jobs, but also to be able to evolve with the changes in the accounting profession, especially in the public sector,” commented Tuan Haji Rozaimi.
“Working in the public interest, ICAEW is committed to supporting our members, students, affiliates, and the government to maintain the highest standards of professional competency and conduct. In Malaysia, we provide this community of professionals with the power to build and sustain a strong economy. By training, developing, and supporting accountants throughout their career, we ensure that they have the expertise and values to meet the needs of tomorrow’s businesses,” said Loh, Head of ICAEW Malaysia.
The presentation ceremony earmarked an important first chapter in enhancing the accounting and financial management system of Government agencies.
Being the steward of public sector finance transformation, the Accountant General’s Department will now be better equipped to uplift the role of finance from being the custodian of public finance, to a strategic partner in driving nation building initiatives.
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