N Selvam, the Author

I always had a passion for writing.Writing is never easy especially when writing books on Application Software. You have to spend much time learning about the software and deciding what to write and who is target market. In 1987, I wrote 5 books on the IUS (Accpac) Accounting Software. The book were published in Malaysia. IUS was a very popular accounting system during this period and I sold over 3,000 copies. In 1987, I also started my own software consulting practice to sell accounting software and provide training, application and technical support for Sage 300 Accounting Software (Accpac). I was given the opportunity to lecture in a local university on computerized accounting. All my time and resources went into the business and I just could not find the time to write any more books. Then we had the lockdown in Malaysia in 2020 because of COVID 19. I now had the opportunity to write once more. I wrote 2 books on Data Visualization with Tableau for Beginners in 2020 (1st Edition and 2nd Edition). Why “for beginners” many people asked me?
I started my career as a production worker and I believe everybody must be given the opportunity to excel and this can only be achieved through education. I always believe for a company to grow, start by training the “lower level” and new team members. When companies upskill and reskill their workforce, there is greater staff loyalty and retention . The learning must never stop. Over the last 2 years, I have done over 50 hands-on training sessions for Tableau for students and fresh graduates. I get a lot of satisfaction from my training sessions. I feel really good when I get feedback from the participants telling that my training and my book opened new career opportunities for them. In 2022, I released another book.SQL for Non-Technical Users Volume 1. I wrote this book because during my training sessions, I discovered many companies do not have a full time IT on the payroll and reporting is handled by the Finance and Marketing department. Their biggest challenge was to get the data into Excel for extended reporting and to me using SQL Statements and Commands is probably the best way to do this. This new book teaches how to write simple SQL Statements for data extraction. In a short span of time, I managed to sell over 200 copies. All my books are now available on shopee.com.my . Shopee is the leading e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia.


Book 1 - Data Visualization


What is Data Visualization?

Data visualization is the graphical representation of information and data. By using visual elements like charts, graphs, and maps, data visualization tools provide an accessible way to see and understand trends, outliers, and patterns in data.

What is Tableau?

Tableau software is one of the fastest growing data visualization tools which is currently being used in the BI industry. It is the best way to change or transform the raw set of data into an easily understandable format with zero technical skills and coding knowledge.

Big Data

Big data is a term that describes the large volume of data – both structured and unstructured – that inundates a business on a day-to-day basis. But it’s not the amount of data that’s important. It’s what organizations do with the data that matters. Big data can be analyzed for insights that lead to better decisions and strategic business moves.

Data Visualization with Tableau for Beginners

There are 14 Chapters in the Data Visualization with Tableau for Beginners (2nd Edition).

Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Downloading Tableau Public, Installation and Creating a Profile
Chapter 3: The Startup Screen for Tableau Public
Chapter 4: The Data Source Page
Chapter 5: Tableau Workspace
Chapter 6: Exploring the Tableau Workspace
Chapter 7: 4 Pivot Tables, 3 Pivot Charts and 1 Dashboard built using Microsoft Excel
Chapter 8: Building Similar Tables and Charts in Chapter 7 using Tableau Public
Chapter 9: Build 6 popular charts to acquire additional skills sets
Chapter 10: Putting the Viz/ Charts together to build a Dashboard and share with others
Chapter 11: Introduction to Sets, Filters, Parameters and LOD
Chapter 12: Tableau with a Microsoft SQL Accounting System
Chapter 13: Plotting Malaysia 4D Lottery Results
Chapter 14: Tableau and the Stock Market

If you are using a SQL accounting system, you can use ODBC or SQL Scripts to export your data into Excel and then do the analysis using Tableau Public and share the visualization with your teammates.

Book 2 - SQL for Non-Technical Users


  • Purchase Book

  • SQL for Non-Technical Users Volume 1

    Many people told me that this book is connected with the earlier 2 books on Data Visualization with Tableau for Beginners.

    Why?

    To do data visualization or data analysis using Pivot Tables or Tableau Public, you need the dataset and you probably want it in Excel

    The challenge is most business applications you access run on Ms-SQL. Excel and Tableau Public will not read SQL Databases

    What if you can write SQL Queries or Statements to extract data you need for your analysis

    This is where my book comes in “SQL for Non-Technical Users” You will be given access to the SQL Databases for the hands-on training My book will get you started with SQL Queries to do data extraction for extended reporting You will get the opportunity to learn so many SQL Keywords and Functions You will have access to more than 30 hands-on exercises The learning must never stop. Learning a new skill will open new opportunities

    The 11 chapters in Volume 1

    Chapter 1 - Introduction to SQL
    Chapter 2 - Downloading SQL Express in your Local Machine and Restoring the Databases for the Hands-on Training
    Chapter 3 - Start-up Screen for Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio
    Chapter 4 - Data Dictionary
    Chapter 5 - SQL Keywords and Functions
    Chapter 6 - Query Pane vs. Results Pane
    Chapter 7 - Hands-on Exercises. Your starting point. Getting SQL to build the Queries for you
    Chapter 8 - 20 Hands-on Exercises. Build your own SQL Queries
    Chapter 9 - Using SQL Query in MS-Query
    Chapter 10 - Extended Reporting using Pivot Tables and Tableau Public
    Chapter 11 - Assignments. 10 Exercises to test your skills

    Book 3 - Excel Made Easy


  • Purchase Book

  • Excel Made Easy

    As an experienced ERP Software Consultant, I noticed that all Application software is as good as the person using it. This also applies to Excel.

    Why?

    Companies across various industries rely on Excel for crucial tasks such as month-end reporting, reconciliation and ad-hoc jobs. The mere thought of Excel suddenly failing highlights its critical role in business operations.

    Thanks to its user-friendly interface and user control over the data, Excel remains a popular choice among students and professionals.

    By learning tips and tricks, users can streamline their workflow and achieve greater efficiency in their tasks.

    To support this goal, I wrote a book that provides over 100 practical shortcuts, tips, and tricks. This book is specifically designed for beginners to intermediate Excel users who want become more efficient in their tasks and possibly open new opportunities,. You get to download the Workbook and also the Answers to all the hands-on exercises. The book has received positive feedback from a group of university students who did the testing and proofreading, with many describing their experience as "amazing." In fact, it's often the smallest tips and tricks that can make the biggest impact. For example, simple shortcuts such as Ctrl A, Ctrl C, Ctrl N and Ctrl V can quickly duplicate an entire worksheet, saving valuable time.

    The 4 chapters

    Chapter 1 - About Microsoft Excel and Short-Cuts
    Chapter 2 - 50 hands-on Tips and Tricks
    Chapter 3 - Another 50 hands-on Tips and Tricks
    Chapter 4 - ChatGpt and Excel

    Book 4 - ChatGPT


    Purchase Book

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    ChatGPT

    "ChatGPT Unleashed: The Power of AI Conversation" takes you on an exciting adventure into the world of artificial intelligence and how it talks to us. With AI becoming a bigger part of our lives, this book shows you how ChatGPT, a smart AI, can have lifelike conversations that help us in amazing ways. Discover how ChatGPT grew from basic conversations into the incredible technology it is today. You'll learn how it understands and writes like a human, changing how we use technology for chatting, learning, working, and having fun. Explore the different ways ChatGPT is used in jobs like customerservice, making content, teaching, and even supporting mental health. Real examples show how people and businesses make the most of AI conversations to be more creative, efficient, and connected. But there's a lot to think about. We'll talk about important questions like fairness, privacy, and how AI affects our relationships. You'll also see how experts are making AI conversations better and safer for everyone. Whether you're a fan of technology, work with it, or just want to know more, this book explains everything about ChatGPT and where AI conversations might go. Get ready to see how AI could change the way we talk to machines and each other. Get started on this journey now!

    Thank you for your support!

    Frequently Asked Questions

    FAQs

    • From April 2015 to August 2018

      If you have registered for GST Malaysia, you could have done more than 40 Tax Filing until August 2018.

      Most likely, you would be using an Accounting Software accredited by JKDM. All accredited Accounting Software must generate GST03, GST Audit File (GAF) and TAP.

      Typically, you would have printed the GST03 Tax Filing Form or generated schedules from your Accounting System or generated the TAP Import File & manually entered or uploaded your GST Values into the KASTAM TAP Portal & hope for the best.

      You could be in a paying position or you could be in a refund position.

      Did you check your GST03 values before doing your submission or you reported whatever values that was generated by your Accounting System.

      I have done more than 300 GST Audit File (GAF) hand-on training and more than 50 GAF Audits on-site. The GST03 values generated from GAF did not agree with the GST03 values that was submitted and for some companies, the variation is significant.

      There were 5 major reasons given for not checking the reported values before submission.

      a. Insufficient time or lack of resources
      b. Assumption that the reported values are good for submission
      c. Lacking skills on how & where to check
      d. Wrong advice given
      e. Should be “safe” if you are in a paying position

      6. Challenges experienced during my audit

      a. No reconciliation done when GST03 values extracted from GAF did not agree with the GST03 Tax Filing Form generated by the Accounting System
      b. GST03 values amended in the KASTAM TAP Portal without proper controls or authorization
      c. Not reporting net realized forex gains and Interest received
      d. Not charging GST for supply transactions
      e. Not reporting purchases of Fixed Assets
      f. Assigning incorrect Tax Codes for overseas purchase and supply transactions
      g. Questionable exchanges rates for overseas purchase and supply transactions
      h. Not accounting for reverse charge for imported services
      i. Misuse of Tax Codes OP & OS (used as a dumping tax code)
      j. Using self-created Tax Codes and GST03 Tax Mapping Table not available. e.g. Tax Code : DNC
      k. Never reported OS in GST03 (required to report in Field 15)
      l. GST% not equal to 6%
      m. No GST Number and BRN Number in GAF for TX & SR Transaction reported in GST03
      n. Non Registered Vendors reported as OP rather than NR
      o. Transactions which are blocked (BL or TX-NC) are assigned Tax Code TX and reported in Field 6a/6b
      p. Too many blank fields in the GST Audit File (possibly software issue)
      q. Invoice date in GAF is not the actual date of the document
      r. Back-posting of transactions after GST03 has been reported
      s. K1 & K2 numbers not appearing in GAF
      t. Differences in opinion to when to assign the K1 number
      u. GAF is damaged and cannot be opened in Excel
      v. GAF is in Excel Format (should be in TXT or XML format)
      w. GAF can only be generated once
      x. Blank “key” fields in GAF & cannot proceed with the audit (e.g. blank Tax Code)
      y. GAF generated using 3rd party software and lines can be amended or deleted
      z. The GAF is incomplete (cannot find all 5 record elements C,P,S,L,F)
      aa. The values in F Record Element is incorrect
      bb. Purchase Tax Codes appearing in S Record Element and Supply Tax Codes in P Record Element
      cc. Cannot reconcile certain values in GAF with GL (e.g. GST Input)
      dd. Failure to charge GST for inter-co transactions
      ee. The GAF is a “nightmare”, possibly build by someone who has no idea what Malaysia GST is all about

      GST Audit File (GAF) is not important

      If someone tells you GAF is not important and can be safely ignored, get it in writing & send it to JKDM to “protect” your company

      The GST Audit File is there for a good reason. It contains all your Accounting Transactions and in simple words “whatever you enter in your Accounting Software, the authorities will find it in GAF”. Therefore, it make perfect sense for KASTAM and Income Tax to use GAF for Audit. They don’t need to know how your Accounting Software works

      The GST Audit File was mentioned many times during the MyGCAP Reviewers Course

    • You must remember you could have done more than 40 GST03 submissions and someone in your company has to take ownership when there is staff turnover. Likewise when you join a new company, you have to be responsible for the previous submissions given your position.

      You challenge will start when the management asked you to verify the previous submissions or you cannot verify how the ex-staff obtained certain values or you receive a letter from KASTAM telling you they are coming in for an audit or asking for breakdown for specific fields in GST03.

      You must remember:

      Accounting staff will leave without doing any “proper handover”. Typically Excel Files used for reconciliation are never handed over.

      Company can change Accounting Software but never generated or verified the GAF from the previous accounting software.

      The GAF never “worked” from worked from Day 1 and all parties choose to keep quiet.

      The programmer who developed the GAF resigned without fixing outstanding issues/bugs.

      The Software Developer/Vendor who sold you the Software “close shop”.

      You could join a new company & you have no idea how the Accounting System works and how they generated GST03 from Day 1. What would you do when you cannot verify any of the values in GST03. Would you leave the organization.

      The company can use their own Tax Codes which are new to you & you do not have a GST03 Tax Mapping Table.

    • Make sure you can still generate GST03, GAF and TAP File for the historical periods.

      Make sure your GST Tax Codes are not removed or replaced.

      Make sure your accounting software can generate separate reports for GST & SST as you will still have GST Transactions for September 2018, possibly right up to December 2019.

      You are expected to keep records for a minimum of 7 years. This also means the GAF will also stay for 7 years.

    • We will be conducting GAF hands-on training for July & August 2018 at subsidized rates (1 full day session @RM350/pax)

      During this training, you will learn:

      How to load the GST Audit File in Excel & naming conventions
      a. The 5 Records Element in GAF and what they represent
      b. Check if the GAF File complies with the requirements as per the GST Software Guide
      c. How to check the integrity of the F Record Element
      d. How to build the GST03 Mapping Table
      e. How to generate GST03 from GAF using Pivot Table & Tax Code Mapping Table
      f. How to generate Supply & Purchase Reports using different parameters (by Tax Code/Supplier/Customer/Country)
      g. How to do exceptions reports (e.g., GST% <> 6%)
      h. How to generate the Trial Balance and Ledger from the L Record Element as well as locate double entries
      i. How to generate reports for multi-periods
      j. How to build audit templates that you can re-use for different periods and different companies

      Participants are encouraged to use their own GST Audit Files for this training (best to have at least 3 Reporting Periods). It would be to your advantage to working knowledge of Excel & Pivot Table for this hands-on training