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Recommended Reading: The Best Stories on Proformative from February

Recommended reading about finance, accounting, treasury issues.

Tying Together Risk, IT, and Finance for the Sake of Data Security
Thanks to deeply ingrained ways of thinking about controls and budgeting, senior finance executives, in general aren’t always seeing the full picture when it comes to data security. “Security is invisible and most C-level folks spend their time on visible things, so they don’t see it among their top 25 priorities until they have a data breach,” says Larry Ponemon, founder of the Ponemon Institute, a data security and privacy research organization.

Finance executives who make the effort to proactively collaborate with IT and their risk colleagues can prevent many disasters from happening. The proliferation of technologies that bring the average employee autonomy from IT are making this need between the functions evermore crucial. 

Get to Know Rex Jackson, CFO at JDSU and Keynote Speaker at the Upcoming ProformaTECH Event
Rex Jackson, who took over the top finance spot at JDS Uniphase in January, will be the keynote speaker at this year’s ProformaTECH conference, taking place March 20 in San Francisco. In anticipation of the event, Jackson spoke with Proformative CEO John Kogan, who himself is a former CFO. Jackson’s speech will provide finance executives with insight into how their organizations can streamline their operations by taking the complexity out of enterprise systems.

CFOs on the Hiring Line: Can You Be Picky?
In the renewed war for talent, can beggars be choosers? If the beggars are CFOs, looking to fill their ranks with qualified, talented, and agreeable employees, then the answer should be yes. Unfortunately, unlike most other hiring managers, finance chiefs don’t have the luxury of being too choosy. While a high unemployment rate still dogs the overall U.S. economy, those in the accounting and finance profession are not having trouble finding jobs and are in high demand (only 1.9% of financial analysts are unemployed, according to staffing firm Robert Half International).

Here are the interview questions to ask to make sure you get a full picture of what a person will really be like on the job. 

6 Ways to Make Sure Your Banker Approves Your Request for an Extension of Credit
Your small business needs cash. Perhaps you want to purchase new equipment that will make your manufacturing process faster and more profitable. Or you want to expand into other areas and need funding to do so. When approaching a financial institution for an extension of credit, how do you put your best foot forward?

How to Improve the CFO-CMO Relationship
Traditionally, the two positions have bumped heads as both positions have operated under different goals and separate agendas. “CMOs [tend to] run guns blazing forward with a brand investment without proper analysis only to have the CFO come along and stop it dead in its track,” says Colin Funk, a CFO and partner with B2B CFO, a provider of financial executive services. For years, CFOs have been frustrated by the inability of marketing to show an ROI on substantial investments, points out Debbie Qaqish, chief strategy officer of The Pedowitz Group, a revenue marketing agency. Similarly, CMOs have not always been satisfied with the help they have needed from CFOs – if they’ve been able to get their attention at all.

Tech Trends That Should Be at the Top of Every Finance Department's Watch List
While every senior executive should pay attention to the latest technological trends and how new tools will impact their company's ability to stay competitive, outperform rivals, and better serve clients, finance chiefs in particular have to be in the know. Corporate finance departments at firms that fail to adapt to new devices and methods will directly feel the effect of missed opportunities or security breaches that could have been prevented if they had a better reading of the latest tech solutions. 

Are Your Employees "Average?" How to Boost Worker Performance and Productivity
How would you describe your employee performance? While most companies want their worker performance to be extremely strong, many executives don't believe their teams are doing the job they could be, according to new research.

Pay Raises vs. Vacation Time: Which Perk Benefits Everyone?
Employers often struggle to keep their employees satisfied; unhappy workers can lead to a high turnover rate, excessive resources spent training new hires and strained client relationships. Companies are sometimes torn on how to keep employees satisfied and working hard. They struggle to determine what will keep them happy and balanced. 

Two of the most common perks a firm offers workers? Paid vacation time and pay raises. But which benefit provides the most advantages for both the business and the employee? There are plenty of factors for companies to consider when doling out perks in the new year, and management teams should be aware of them when reworking policies or rewarding employees for exemplary work.

Enterprise Operations in the BYOD Age
The consumerization of IT has led to a massive and rapid influx of personal smartphones and tablets in enterprises, as manufacturers and software developers continue to balance products between consumer-friendliness and employee productivity. Executive jobs now require a broader knowledge of new technologies – and the strategies to capitalize on advanced products - than ever before.

As a result, enterprise decision-makers must first look to build bring-your-own-device (BYOD) strategies to ensure productive and secure use of employee-owned smartphones and tablets.

When It Comes to Accounting, Cloud Computing Benefits May Overshadow Challenges
The cloud presents CFOs with an opportunity to improve productivity, open up lines of communication throughout the company, and make employees more efficient. However, many CFOs are fearful of moving accounting to the cloud, and they have good reason. There are several concerns that can stem from the migration to an online storage solution, but the question is: Do the benefits of the cloud outweigh the challenges that stem from implementation and integration?