Blog, Equity Management, Stock Plan Accounting and Reporting, Stock Plan Administration, Equity, Compensation Benefits, Spreadsheets, Compliance

Competing Priorities: How to Ease the Equity Plan Management Workload

By: Jennifer Baehr, CEP - Director, Solutions Engineering

Equity plan managers don’t have all the time in the world – but they do have a huge amount of responsibility. Here’s how to lighten the load.

In any organization, in any industry, it’s standard for someone to take on multiple responsibilities within their role – and it’s not unusual for people to pick up extra tasks outside their job description, either.

The problem is, when someone wears too many hats, all their tasks can suffer. And when you’re managing employee benefits and grants, that’s a high-effort, high-risk scenario.

Small teams, complex roles

The workload for equity plan management is diverse. Reconciliation, accounting, statements, calculations, disclosures, routine administration… there’s a whole host of tasks that have to be handled for effective plan management.

We understand how difficult it is if you’re the person wearing all those hats – but it’s not unusual to find yourself in this position.

Equity plan management teams are often small. Our research has shown that a massive proportion of organizations have fewer than three stock administration personnel on the team (69%). Only 3% have ten or more people on board specifically to manage this work.

What’s more concerning is that 19% of the organizations we surveyed don’t have any dedicated personnel for equity plan management, instead, they pull people from generalist HR, accounting and finance roles to cover the workload.

Traditional methods

With so few resources on the ground to handle equity plan management, organizations are opening themselves up to a whole array of risks.

From compliance issues to potential data loss, the traditional methods of management are no longer fit for purpose.

If your organization uses Microsoft Excel, you’re likely compounding many equity plan management challenges by using a tool that’s not designed specifically for the task.

You can read about the risk - and how to overcome them - in our new white paper, The Seven Risks of Spreadsheets and Three Routes to Eliminate Them.

A solution to competing priorities

Equity plans are a vital component of the employee benefits package – so they deserve more focus than many organizations are currently able to give them.

There are three ways you can reduce the stress and complexity of equity plan management:

  1. Outsource to an expert partner – ideal if you don’t have the resources in-house, but potentially expensive.
  2. Co-source with an expert partner for a flexible way to balance your own resources with an external support system.
  3. Deploy dedicated software to give your team a way to use their own resources on a platform that’s built specifically for the task.

Our Equity Compensation Management Platform is designed to help organizations like yours dedicate the resources these plans need to be an effective employee benefit, without adding more burden to your teams.

It includes automated workflows for key tasks such as reporting while introducing employee self-service capabilities to help you distribute some of the responsibilities to your people.

Take a look at our two-pager for more insight into how the platform works, and how support from Certent experts can help you minimize the risks and manual effort involved with managing employee compensation plans.

And, if you’d like to talk to us about your challenges directly, don’t hesitate to get in touch and talk to one of our experts today.

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