Working with Data: Basic Concepts

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It is common for many business users to handle data files in their daily work. However, many of them do not have systematic learning on data handling – for example, they learn through templates and programs setup by their previous colleagues, or informal guidance from their supervisors. Such fragmental learning does not allow users to establish proper understanding and concept in data handling.

Working with Data: Basic Concepts is a foundation course for all business users, which aims to provide systematic and organized learning on data handling. By understanding essential elements and techniques on data, users are able to handle data files effectively and avoid unnecessary hiccups arising from improper approaches used.

This course is suitable for business users from insurance, takaful, reinsurance & retakaful companies who are looking to strengthen their concepts in data handling. Please note that materials covered in this course is only limited to static data, such as data files downloaded from enterprise system on monthly basis.

Course Level: Foundation
Target Audience: Business users from insurance, takaful, reinsurance & retakaful companies who are looking to strengthen their concepts in data handling.


Course Outlines

Chapter 1: Organize Your Data in a Table
This Chapter explains the essential characteristics of a data file, which data used in the daily work are usually organized in table format. In addition, Course Participants also learn to identify examples of unorganized data files, which need to be replaced or corrected before feeding the files into the data handling process.

This Chapter also suggests a common workflow that can be applied to most of the data handling processes. Course Participants can refer to the suggested structure in designing or enhancing their data handling process.

Chapter 2: Perform Validations on Your Data
“Rubbish in, rubbish out” is one of the most important concepts in data handling. If the data we use are inaccurate, the results produced from the data are definitely wrong. Hence, we should always validate our data files before using for any calculations.

This Chapter explains common validations that we can perform on our data files, which are usually setup as the first or second steps of our data handling process.

Chapter 3: Incorporate Additional Calculations
Rather than summarizing data directly from the data files, we usually incorporate additional calculations in our data files, by using information from the data files. For example, we needs to insert a new column for turn-around-time (“TAT”), which is derived from notification date and completion date / paid date in the data files.

This Chapter explains how we can manage additional calculations in a systematic way, including “pitstops” concept that is particularly useful in calculation phase.

Chapter 4: Organize Your Data Files
This Chapter suggests a common approach that we can adopt in managing our data files. Instead of using complicated techniques or applications, we can manage our files systematically by adopting simple convention through folders and filenames!

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