Training Financial Modeling for Data Analysis & Dashboard Reporting

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Discover how to tame your data and make it work for you!  Learn to synthesise and summarise information into a logical framework. Gain key concepts in reporting and data visualisation best practice for presenting data graphically using tables, charts, reports and presentations.

Workshop Leader
Danielle Stein Fairhurst, Sydney – Australia

Financial Modelling Specialist & Presenter
Danielle Stein Fairhurst

She is the Principal of Plum Solutions, a Sydney-based consultancy specializing in financial modelling and analysis.  She is the author of Using Excel for Business Analysis: a Fundamental Approach to Financial Modelling, revised edition published by Wiley Finance in 2015.  With many years’ experience as a financial analyst, she helps her clients create meaningful financial models in the form of business cases, pricing models and management reports.  She has hands-on experience in a number of industry sectors, including telecoms, information systems, manufacturing and financial services.

The course material includes extensive use of Excel and participants will gain the maximum benefit from this course if they are already competent spreadsheets users. It is designed for users who do use (or will use) Excel on a regular basis, and are comfortable with using its tools and functions.

At minimum, it is assumed that participants will know how to:

  • Navigate confidently in Excel
  • Create and use formulas
  • Link between workbooks
  • Build a basic chart

Software Used
Each delegate must have their own laptop or workstation with their preferred version of Excel installed. The course is demonstrated using Microsoft Excel 2016, but students can use any version of Excel they prefer although it is highly recommended they use Excel 2010 or later.  Course materials contain instructions for all versions, including Excel for Mac. PCs are used during this course, so Apple Macintosh users will be catered for.

Course Materials
Each participant receives a revised edition of Using Excel for Business Analysis by your course presenter, Danielle Stein Fairhurst. Delegates are provided with over 50 Excel templates and examples with step-by-step instructions for case studies.

Many of us struggle to make sense of all the data that is available in this information age.  With such a deluge of reports and statistics which dont mean anything or cant be made sense of, its no wonder that data is often misinterpreted or not communicated at all.  This course will help you understand how to tame your data and make it work for you!  Learn how to synthesise information into a logical framework, summarise it into a meaningful format, and then display the summary into easy-to-read tables and graphs.  Covering dashboard reporting, balanced scorecards, visual design of charts and tables, we will also discuss the new charting and analysis features of Excel 2013 and 2016.

Who should attend?
This course is aimed at managers and other professionals who need to create dashboards and other reports in order to analyse interpret and present information.  It is expected that students should have had some exposure to business, finance and reporting principles. This course builds on students existing knowledge of Excel tools and functions and incorporates these into complex and dynamic reports and dashboards.

Learning Objectives
This course is very hands-on and practical.  Each participant will be expected to create their own reports, charts and models utilising the tools and techniques covered during the course.

By the end of the course, participants will:

  1. Understand the principles of data analysis
  2. Learn to synthesise and summarise information into a logical framework.
  3. Consider when to use a chart or a table
  4. Know how to use visual effects to improve their reports and presentations
  5. Explore how to summarise, present and communicate data clearly and concisely
  6. Learn the principles of good dashboard design and presenting data graphically
  7. Discover the tools to analyse data & build reports using your existing Excel tools and skills (and perhaps a few you didnt know you had!)

Course Content

Day 1 – Using Excel for Data Analysis and Analytical Tools
Data Analysis Tools

Tool selection

  • Evaluation of Excel vs. other BI alternatives, including Power Pivot in terms of speed, usability and cost

Whats new in Office 2013 and 2016

  • Technical differences between versions. Considerations when building data models for users of different versions.


  • Speed up your data manipulation in Excel with the use of shortcuts

Tables & PivotTables

  • Analysing data more quickly and efficiently using structured reference table and summarise using PivotTables

Power Pivot

  • Demonstration of the Microsoft add-in to Excel, PowerPivot

Using Excel as a Data Analysis Tool
Essential Excel tools & functions

  • Overview of must-know tools and functions for data analysis such as LOOKUPS, logical and aggregation functions

Creating a robust formula

  • Nest functions together to create succinct and robust formulas

Working with text

  • Using text and concatenation functions to string numbers and text together to show in a dashboard or chart.

Cleaning your data

  • Tools and tricks to clean data before using it to build a report or dashboard

Day 2 – Data Presentation and Reporting

Charting in Excel
Working with charts in Excel 2013/16

  • Overview of new charting features of Excel

Creating a Combo or Bubble chart

  • Show correlations by charting on different axes and chart types or bubble charts

Waterfall charts

  • Comparison of different methods of waterfall charts, create your own template for future use.

Charting with dynamic ranges

  • Explore various methods for dealing with varying data ranges in chart data sources

Chart and Table Design
Tables vs. Charts/Graphs

  • Deciding the best method for visual display

Visual Design

  • Design principles for effective graphic data presentation

Which chart?

  • Choosing the correct chart to use to display different data and messages from your findings

Charting dos and donts

  • Tips and tricks for a quicker chart build and was to making charts more robust and automated

Dashboard Reporting
What is a dashboard?

  • History and definition of dashboard reports

Purpose and benefits of Dashboards

  • Why dashboards are so popular

Common mistakes when building a Dashboard

  • Critique of poorly built dashboards

Creating a Dashboard in Excel

  • Using provided data, create your own dashboard in Excel

Dashboard Design
Principles of dashboard design best practice

  • Dashboard layout, colour choice and display principles

Selecting the correct chart to display data

  • Getting your message across most effectively by choosing the correct medium of display

Adding icons and images to dashboards

  • Quick and easy ways to add automated colour and icons to your reports

Effective use of colour and logos

  • Ways to make an impact with colour

Making dashboards dynamic

  • Save time by using clever formulas which automatically update information on the dashboard

Practical exercise:  Using your own data, or examples provided, create a dynamic dashboard template incorporating the tools and techniques discussed during the course.

Get discount 10% for register more than 1 person from the same company

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