Financial systems can be as simple a piece of ledger paper and pencil. But most modern systems are much more complex. This course helps lay the foundation for understanding the principles behind how financial systems work. It's ok if you've never used a paper ledger, but having used a spreadsheet and having looked at a checking account or credit card statement would be helpful in understanding these principles.

The course starts with structured verses unstructured data, transactions and events verses balances, measurement concepts, posting, ledgers, attributes for creating balances called the chart of account, step-ups, and basic computer processes like joins and more.

With this background you'll be ready to perform business analysis or contribute to a financial systems development project.

So let's get started.

Course Curriculum

  • 1


    • This is an intermediate course.....

    • ​Overview of finsysvlogger video series on You-Tube​

  • 2

    Transactions vs. Balances

    • Unstructured Data, Structured Data

    • Business Events and Measurement

    • Business Events and Transparency

    • What is a "Posting Process"

    • Data Warehouse vs. Finance System

  • 3

    Keys, Joins and Reference Data

    • A "Metric Engine" creates balances

    • The "Chart of Account" defines balances

    • "Joins" are often used in creating or reporting on balances

    • What is "Data Normalization"

  • 4

    Special Kinds of Balances

    • Metric Engine and Step-ups

    • The Power of Step-ups

    • The Swimming Pool Step-up Example

    • Metric Engine, Interim Reporting and Temporal Events

  • 5


    • Making it real

    • Course Evaluation

About the instructor

Financial Systems Expert

Kip Twitchell

Kip Twitchell is a global subject matter expert with IBM Global Business Services (GBS) Financial Services Sector. He has extensive experience as a consultant in financial management and business intelligence systems, having consulted numerous Fortune 500 companies and 12 of the top 25 banks in the world. He is a Certified Public Accountant in the US and expert in the field of business events-based reporting and financial systemsHe is the author of “Balancing Act: A Practical Approach to Business Event Based Insights” (2010), and “Metric Engine: Reinventing the Data Supply Chains for Business” (2015) and vlogs (video blog) in "Conversations with Kip" on financial systems as the @finsysvlogger. He began his career with Price Waterhouse , which became PricewaterhouseCoopers and PwC consulting in 1998. PwC Consulting was acquired by IBM in 2002. He attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

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