The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and Fourthrev have partnered to launch a global Financial Analytics Programme.
The online programme is designed for integration into the curriculum of accounting and finance degrees. It can also be used standalone by recently qualified accountants.
Based on industry feedback, the programme aims to enable learners to develop their mindset, communication, and modern financial analytics capabilities essential for forward-thinking finance professionals in the age of big data.
Consisting of 150 hours of study, the programme will be guided by financial experts. It has been built in collaboration with industry partners to provide authentic business projects.
The programme was created following interviews with several major accounting firms and multinational corporations in the UK, India and South East Asia including EY, Baker Tilly, KPMG, and Tech Mahindra. The interviews revealed that that the accounting profession is fundamentally changing as big data, technology and AI automate up to 42% of traditional finance activities, according to a study by McKinsey.
According to this consultation, prospective accountancy graduates not only need education in modern financial analytics, but crucially in the ‘human’ skills that will enable graduates to effectively engage and advise stakeholders across an organisation.
In light of this, the programme has a focus on combining ‘human’ skills with technical capabilities and aims to help develop:
- Critical thinking skills to ask the right questions of data to address business requirements
- Frameworks and approaches to conduct financial analytics, drawing upon datasets and their wider knowledge of the company/industry
- Technical skills with Excel and Tableau to perform analytics and develop insights and dashboards
- Methods to create compelling narratives to convey insights in slide presentation
- Best practice ways to communicate with internal and external stakeholders
- Positive behaviours around continuous learning and taking initiative
ACCA global partnerships lead Debbie Talbot said: “Accelerated digital transformation has vastly increased the amount of data and information available to us. With this influx of data, we can generate new insights and support effective decision making, and so it is essential that ACCA members are equipped for this analytics revolution. The ACCA Qualification prepares our future members for a digital future, and this programme is an excellent addition to our offering. Accountancy is a cornerstone profession of society and addressing this ongoing skill need is therefore imperative.”