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Learn PQL with these free online courses from Celonis Academy

BlogProcess in Practice

Understanding and being able to effectively use the Celonis Process Query Language, also called Celonis PQL, is an important skill for Celonis EMS users. Celonis Academy offers free, online PQL courses that will help both processing mining beginners and experts get up to speed with this custom-built query language.

What is PQL?

PQL is a domain-specific, programming language designed to help business users analyze processes by running process-related queries on a custom-built query engine, the Celonis PQL Engine (a column-store main memory database system).

PQL is a declarative language and was originally released in 2014 as an extension to SQL (Structured Query Language). In this first PQL version, the custom PQL commands were translated into standard SQL and executed on the source database system. In 2016, Celonis PQL was released as a completely independent language, inspired by SQL, with queries now being executed on the Celonis PQL Engine. Because the PQL Engine was optimized for process mining, this change improved run time performance and made it easier to support more source systems.

 

As of today, PQL, the SaolaDB (a custom-built, in-memory analytics database), the Celonis Process Mining Engine, and Action Flow automations combine to create the Celonis Execution Management System (EMS). Using the Celonis EMS, over 10,000 users conduct more than 5 million queries per day.

Free PQL training courses from Celonis Academy

Celonis Academy offers both individual courses and Training Tracks (guided learning paths that consist of multiple courses). Learners can complete a course or track in a single session or break up the learnings over time. The following courses can help you master both PQL basics and advanced techniques.

PQL and the Celonis PQL Engine

Start your Celonis PQL journey here. This course covers the history and core design goals for PQL as well as the Celonis Software Architecture and PQL Engine. You will also learn how to differentiate between SQL and PQL statements and apply the main PQL operators. The course takes about 30 minutes to complete.

The Celonis Software Architecture: Celonis applications use Celonis PQL to query data from a data model.

The Celonis Software Architecture: Celonis applications use Celonis PQL to query data from a data model.

Basic Coding with PQL

This course will teach you how to code basic queries with PQL. After completing this course, learners should be able to apply basic Celonis PQL queries containing conditions and basic functions, modify string input and timestamps and use basic process-related functions. PQL best practices and library sources are also covered. The course is available in English, German, French and Japanese. It is designed to take about 2.5 hours.

Apply PQL in Analysis Building

Designed as a follow-up to Basic Coding with PQL, this course will show the learner how to use PQL, including PU functions, for building and enhancing analysis components. This is one of several courses that together form the Build Analyses - Advanced training track. It’s a short course, and should take about 15 minutes to complete.

Joins and Filters in PQL

This course starts with a deep dive into Data Models with multiple tables, relationships between tables and joins. It will also show you how to find the Data Model visualization in Celonis Process Analytics and Studio. Next, it covers the execution order of joins and aggregations and teaches you how to handle the error “No common table”. Lastly, learners will explore the concept of filters, discussing basic filters on a single table as well as filter propagation to multiple tables. It is recommended that learners take Basic Coding with PQL or have a solid understanding of PQL basics before taking this course. A basic understanding of relational databases and completing the PQL and the Celonis PQL Engine course would also be beneficial but are not a must. The course is designed to take about 45 minutes.

Use PU-Functions in Analyses

This course will help learners take their analysis building skills to the next level by using PQL's Pull Up (PU) - functions.After completing this course, you will be able to apply PU functions instead of standard aggregation where necessary, understand underlying table structure and filter behavior, act on error messages like “no common table” and “PU-function could not be executed” and apply correct syntax. It is highly recommended that learners complete both Basic Coding with PQL and Joins & Filters in PQL before taking this course. The lesson is designed to take about 1 hour.

Learn PQL, process mining and execution management skills

Data-centric employees (data scientists, data engineers, strategy managers, etc.) with process mining, process management, or execution management skills are in demand. For more information on Celonis Academy and the free, on-demand training courses and learning material available from Celonis, check out the following resources:

If you want to help build the execution management and process mining systems that will be part of every enterprise IT toolkit, comework for Celonis!

Bill Detwiler is Editor for Technical Content and Ecosystem at Celonis. He is the former Editor in Chief of TechRepublic, where he hosted the Dynamic Developer podcast and Cracking Open, CNET's popular online show. Bill is an award-winning journalist, who's covered the tech industry for more than two decades. Prior his career in the software industry and tech media, he was an IT professional in the social research and energy industries.
Bill Detwiler
Editor, Technical Content & Ecosystem

Bill Detwiler is Editor for Technical Content and Ecosystem at Celonis. He is the former Editor in Chief of TechRepublic, where he hosted the Dynamic Developer podcast and Cracking Open, CNET’s popular online show. Bill is an award-winning journalist, who’s covered the tech industry for more than two decades. Prior his career in the software industry and tech media, he was an IT professional in the social research and energy industries.

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