By George Martinson. Developing a truly efficient administrative process doesn’t happen overnight. There is quite a bit of planning and practice involved to create a well-oiled machine. From internal reporting to gathering grant approvals and maintaining recurring employee communications, every company has a different formula to manage these processes. Industry events and networking with peers provide stock option administrators the opportunity to gather best practices and helpful tips to fine-tune your method, increase efficiency and decrease pain points. If you’ve taken the first step towards improving your stock plan management by implementing a software solution, are you using all of the functionality? In the spirit of the ever popular internet life hacks, here are a few tricks to consider in improving your everyday equity administration processes.
Online Grant Communication
What does your participant portal look like today? Can employees easily log in through the cloud, from anywhere, anytime? Or is it a convoluted mess of paperwork and tracking signatures? In 2015, it has become overwhelmingly common to leverage an online portal to help employees track and accept their grants, as well as to streamline the process for plan administrators to account for each employee and their awards. Organizations who complete this process by primarily issuing paper, find themselves drowning in a flood of documents and signatures. Tracking participant paperwork is cumbersome, much less hunting down outstanding forms from non-responsive employees. If employees have not completed the necessary forms to claim their equity awards, a follow up must be sent out to those who have not yet replied. An online system alerts the equity administrator of those red flags, and will send out an automated message to the participant reminding them to complete the grant process within a given timeframe.
Develop Grant Package Codes
For organizations that issue multiple grant packages to a variety of employees and management levels, a bottleneck can occur when individually uploading the grant agreement for each participant. If you issue a similar package to a variety of participants, you can save time and energy by creating and uploading a template for those grant particulars to be used within your online equity management platform. Next time, simply select the appropriate package when issuing a grant to a specific employee and say goodbye to the days of manually inserting that agreement into the system. You will be able to appropriately allocate the number of shares and effective dates, but the plan details – which may not change from one employee to the next – can be in the system ready to go at a moment’s notice.
We all have those same handful of reports we run every week, month, quarter or year, so why log in and manually run these reports each time? Set it and forget it. An email can be generated by your online equity compensation management system, alerting you to log in once your reports are ready. Quarter and year-end closing time is defined by tight deadlines and mountains of reports. Leverage the functionality of your stock plan solution and let your online system do the heavy lifting. Depending on your needs, the reports can be set for any recurrence – saving you precious time and energy. Another added benefit of batch reporting is the reduced chance for error. Once you have confidence in the report and criteria being used, you can be certain the data is consistent and correct time after time.
Be sure to take advantage of the functionality of your stock plan management solution to make your day-to-day processes more efficient. Whether you are using online grant communication, grant package codes, or batch reporting, the objective for all administrators is to save time and streamline workflows. Post a comment and share how you take your stock plan management to the next level!