The cross-departmental nature of managing an equity plan can make gathering data and keeping up-to-date records a nightmare. There is no time more crucial than year-end to make sure you reconcile equity plan data across all of your internal stakeholders and departments.
It’s not often that the worlds of professional sports and equity compensation intersect. True, I have a Google alert set up for “stock options” that sometimes returns articles about how the stock of football players impacts their career options (as in “Joe Schmo played really well in the last game; his stock is really rising”), but that’s not what I’m referring to. I’m talking about domestic mobility. While we are struggling with how compensation is taxed when employees travel from one state to another, this is an issue that professional sports has been dealing with for a long time now.
Designing and managing equity plans is half the battle – effective communications represents the other half and requires equity plan managers to put on their marketing caps. I know that you already have a ton on your plate, so here is a quick “Marketing 101” that will help you gain awareness for your equity plans.
When it comes down to it, we grant equity compensation for the benefit of the recipients. We aren’t granting awards for the joy of accounting for them, nor for the fun of taxing them. We want employees to be happy with their awards, and we want the awards to drive motivation, loyalty, and retention. Because inquiring minds want to know, Fidelity Stock Plan Services undertakes an extensive biannual survey to understand the participant side of the story, which can help plan sponsors to be more effective with their offerings. Here are a few of the results.
With the 24th Annual NASPP Conference and Exhibition coming up next week, we wanted to make sure you get the most out of your time in Houston. Attending conferences can be a struggle when trying to choose from a jam-packed schedule full of inspiring breakout sessions and balancing that with authentic, meaningful networking all while maintaining your day-to-day workload. You need to make the most of your time at the conference and here are 7 ways to do it.
Earlier this year, I was lucky enough to attend the 17th-annual Global Equity Organization conference in Boston. I feel right at home at conferences like this: They are teeming with people who love equity compensation as much as I do. I always look forward to hearing what people are talking about, whether it is in the keynote speeches, the more detailed breakout sessions, or just networking over a lobster roll in the Boston-themed exhibit hall. These conversations give me a glimpse of what the future holds, and when I hear the same topic addressed in a keynote, in a breakout, and in the exhibit-hall chatter, I know it must be a hot topic. So, what’s everyone talking about? Millennials!
A fast-growing medical device company expects to file for an initial public offering (IPO) next year. The company has offered incentive stock options (ISOs) to their executives and these execs now have the opportunity to exercise early, if they choose to. After the IPO, executives will be forbidden to sell during the 180-day lockup period and there will be limits detailing how much company stock an executive can sell all at once. The executives realize that these economic and tax decisions are more complex than those they have had to make in the past.
A couple of years ago, UBS started a research project called UBS Participant Voice, a series of surveys seeking to canvas the attitudes of stock plan participants toward their equity awards (see our blog commentary on the first survey). The latest survey in the series, which obtained responses from more than 1,000 stock plan participants across a variety of industries, delivers some interesting insights into the value employees both perceive and actually get from equity awards. These insights may be useful both to equity-granting companies and to financial advisors who have clients with stock compensation.
Everyone was stunned when Liam, the hard-charging chief logistics officer, suffered a heart attack at the pharmaceutical company where he works. While he’s mostly recovered, Liam is retiring on doctor’s orders and has reached out to Margaret, his company’s stock plan administrator. Liam qualifies for permanent disability, which would allow him to retire sooner than expected. The question remains how to put together the resources.
In Equilar’s recent issue of C-Suite Magazine, Dan Martec, Editor-in-Chief, discusses the future of shareholder engagement and the impact on companies. In his article, Be Prepared to Perform, Martec explains that while typically 75% of companies pass their Say-on-Pay vote, shareholders will continue to demand more transparency. And because there is a concern about the shift in balance of power, identifying and addressing shareholder concerns is critical. Here are a few ways to be prepared.