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6 Ways to Get More Value From an IT Consultant
IT consultants are many things — experts in their field, champions of the workaround and, generally, the “people persons” of the tech field. But they’re not magicians who, with the wave of a smartphone, can solve any dilemma you throw at them. Here are six ways to get more value from your company’s next IT ...

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Are Your Managers Overriding Fraud Controls?
Your company may have strong fraud prevention controls in place. But they do little good if a senior manager overrides those controls. In the worst cases, managers may alter records, manipulate financial results, intentionally misstate the timing of transactions or use any of dozens of other tactics to hide financial problems. Something Isn’t Right Management ...

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Protect Your Peace of Mind With a Trust Protector
Irrevocable trusts can allow for the smooth, tax-advantaged transfer of wealth to family members. But there’s a drawback: When you set up an irrevocable trust, you must relinquish control of the assets placed in it. What you can control is who will eventually oversee distribution of the assets after your death. That is, you can ...

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Contemplating Compensation Increases and Pay for Performance
As a business grows, one of many challenges it faces is identifying a competitive yet manageable compensation structure. After all, offer too little and you likely won’t have much success in hiring. Offer too much and you may compromise cash flow and profitability. But the challenge doesn’t end there. Once you have a feasible compensation ...

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Even Voicemail is Susceptible to Fraud
In a world of increasing exposure to online security threats, it’s nice to be able to rely on voicemail for risk-free communication. The problem is, you can’t. Your voicemail system can easily be hacked if you don’t take some precautions. Passwords as Passports In the most common scheme, hackers figure out the passwords for voicemail ...

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Provide for Family Members With Special Needs Using an SNT
If you have a child or other family member with a disabling condition that requires long-term care or prevents (or will prevent) him or her from being able to support him- or herself, consider establishing a special needs trust (SNT). Also known as a supplemental needs trust, an SNT allows you to enhance a family ...

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Is There a Weak Link in Your Supply Chain?
In an increasingly global economy, keeping a close eye on your supply chain is imperative. Even if your company operates only locally or nationally, your suppliers could be affected by wider economic conditions and developments. So, make sure you’re regularly assessing where weak links in your supply chain may lie. 3 Common Risks Every business ...

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Missing Inventory? Fraud Experts Can Help
One of the most difficult administrative tasks for retailers, manufacturers and contractors is keeping tabs on inventory. If the numbers don’t seem to add up during your physical inventory count, it may be time to bring in a fraud expert to uncover the source of the discrepancy. Stolen or Misplaced Before assuming theft, a fraud ...

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Have You Ever Made Your Burial Wishes Clear?
It may be difficult to consider, but funeral arrangements are a critical component of your estate plan. Failure to clearly communicate your wishes regarding the disposition of your remains can lead to tension, disputes and even litigation among your family members during what is already a difficult time. Address These Issues The methods for expressing ...

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Get SMART When it Comes to Setting Strategic Goals
Strategic planning is key to ensuring every company’s long-term viability, and goal setting is an indispensable step toward fulfilling those plans. Unfortunately, businesses often don’t accomplish their overall strategic plans because they’re unable to fully reach the various goals necessary to get there. If this scenario sounds all too familiar, trace your goals back to ...

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Tools for Disabling Disability Fraud
The Social Security Administration isn’t the only organization that needs to worry about disability fraud. Many employers provide private disability insurance policies. Self-employed and some traditionally employed individuals also purchase private disability coverage. Fraud perpetrators can file false claims under any of these types of policies, leaving insurers on the hook — and the rest ...

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Double Duty Giving With Charitable Gift Annuities
If you’re charitably inclined, you may wish to consider a charitable gift annuity. It can combine the benefits of an immediate income tax deduction and a lifetime income stream. Furthermore, it allows you to support a favorite charity and reduce the size of your future taxable estate. What is It? A charitable gift annuity is ...

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Trust is an Essential Building Block of Today’s Websites
When business use of websites began, getting noticed was the name of the game. Remember pop-up ads? Text scrolling up the screen? How about those mesmerizing rotating banners? Yes, there were — and remain — a variety of comical and some would say annoying ways to get visitors’ attention. Nowadays, most Internet users are savvy ...

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Fraud Prevention is a Cost Small Businesses Can’t Forgo
In June, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced “Operation Main Street: Stopping Small Business Scams,” a partnership between federal and state authorities and the Better Business Bureau. The initiative supports what fraud experts have long known: Small businesses can be easy targets for scams because they don’t always have the staffing or financial resources to ...

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21st Century Estate Planning Accounts for Digital Assets
Even though you can’t physically touch digital assets, they’re just as important to include in your estate plan as your material assets. Digital assets may include online bank and brokerage accounts, digital photo galleries, and even email and social media accounts. If you die without addressing these assets in your estate plan, your loved ones ...

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