Training Case Study
More than a dozen critical data models converted from SAS and MS Excel to Python.
80% reduction in turnaround time for project tackled during the training.
$500,000 in annual license fee savings after transitioning from SAS to Python.
As its data analysis and modeling needs grew quickly, this fast-growing mid-sized financial services company needed to train over 100 employees on its Credit Analysis team in Python.
The Credit Analysis team had been doing their work using a combination of SAS and MS Excel. However, as the team grew, SAS licensing fees were becoming a real problem, while MS Excel was becoming a serious productivity bottleneck for their increasingly complex analytical needs. Python was identified as a suitable solution given its free, open-source license and extensive ecosystem of analysis and modeling tools.
Furthermore, the client also wanted to ensure that the team would not only continue using Python after the initial training, but that they would hit the ground running with the new tool, and deliver tangible value and ROI as soon the initial training was completed. For this reason, the team also needed ongoing expert support through the process of converting all their legacy SAS and MS Excel models into Python code.
Edlitera had been working with other teams in the company, so we were consulted on possible solutions to this situation.
First, we mapped out the team’s analysis workflows in order to document the most common use cases, as well as internal, specific use cases that the team would need to handle first as they started with Python.
Second, we designed and built a custom curriculum on Python for Data Analysis that addressed the team’s most important use cases directly. Also, while some team members had some previous experience with other programming languages, most were learning programming for the first time. We made sure that the curriculum design accounted for the team’s different levels of programming experience.
As part of the curriculum design, we also outlined and scaffolded a custom project using the client’s data. This guided the team through how to build a usable and immediately applicable solution to a current workflow using Python, as well as how to export and present their results to their colleagues, managers and clients.
After teaching the curriculum to the entire team in a series of instructor-led workshops and guiding them through the custom project until completion, we launched a 1-on-1 mentoring program with the team to support them through the process of converting their legacy code and models into Python.
Results & Outcomes
As a result of our work, 100% of the client’s team graduated the training program with a working knowledge of writing Python code for data analysis and modeling. In addition, through their capstone project, they were able to use Python to significantly reduce the time required to complete a workflow previously done in MS Excel.
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