January 2018: What We’re Reading

By The Center Team on January 30, 2018

News and insights to keep you up to date and on track—emerging tech trends, best practices for visualizing data, the keys to business agility, and more.

We’re here to help you make your business spending more strategic, intelligent, and connected. Stay up to date and on track with recent insights from business strategy experts and fintech thought leaders.

Top 18 Tech Trends at CES 2018
Daniel Newman for Forbes | @danielnewmanUV

CES, one of the largest tech conferences in the world, is one of the premier places to spot the emerging technologies that deserve a place in your product plans and budgets, from convertible tablet/laptop devices to 3D printers and wireless charging.

“From a budgeting standpoint to simply knowing what’s around the corner in your industry, keeping up with enterprise tech trends is a key to staying competitive in the digital world.”


The Problem with Pie Charts
Vincent Ryan for CFO | @vincerCFO

Starting with the invention of the pie chart in the late 1700s, this article explores a variety of visual tools used to depict and present financial data, with an analysis of which strategies work hardest for clear communication.

“A good graphic represents quantities accurately; makes it easy to compare them and see how they relate to one another; and makes it easy to see a ranked order of values.”


How Agile Businesses Eliminate Threats Before They Strike
Charles Orton-Jones for Raconteur | @CharlesOJ

Many companies call themselves agile, but these elite players have proven they know how to move quickly to identify threats, dodge market risks, and successfully course correct to stay relevant.

“One frequent factor found in companies with a track record of agility is an overriding purpose. This North Star offers a way to navigate through the chaos.”


Top CFO Priorities for 2018: Taking Aim
CFO Magazine Staff | @cfo

CFOs from a diverse range of industries share their goals for 2018, detailing their plan of attack based on market conditions, macroeconomic trends, and the unique demands of their businesses.

“Overall, finance chiefs will have an abundance of ‘levers’ they can pull to influence business outcomes next year. But which ones will they use? The choice is highly dependent, of course, on the businesses they run.”


Delivering Growth Through Diversity
McKinsey & Company | @McKinsey

The business case for diversity is clear: gender and ethnic diversity is correlated with profitability. Companies worldwide are employing inclusion strategies as a source of competitive advantage and growth.

“Our latest study of diversity in the workplace, Delivering through diversity, reaffirms the global relevance of the link between diversity—defined as a greater proportion of women and a more mixed ethnic and cultural composition in the leadership of large companies—and company financial outperformance.”


The FP&A Evolution: A Reality Check
Ernie Humphrey | @ErnestHumphrey

Over the past five years, the FP&A function has evolved into a more strategic—less tactical—function. But do today’s finance leaders truly have the tools they need to make data-driven decisions?

“Most FP&A teams are empowered to deliver strategic value across the enterprise—perception or reality? Unfortunately, based on data obtained from over 500 companies across the globe, it appears to be much more perception than reality.”