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As the Race for Top Talent Intensifies, US Tech Firms Ratchet Up New-Hire Equity Awards

As corporate valuations climb, so too does the value of unvested equity awards. This makes it harder to recruit talent and drives demand for larger and larger new-hire equity grants. In our latest article, we unearth a little known pay metric to highlight the dramatic uplift in new-hire equity award sizes over the past five years.

When is it Time to Get Worried about High Sales Force Turnover?

Our recent article on sales force turnover at software companies turned a few heads and prompted a number of interesting questions from readers. With those inquiries in mind, we decided to dig deeper and explore the potential impact of sales rep turnover on revenue goals, as well as turnover rates across key US regions.

Software Sales Professionals are on the Move as the Technology Sector Booms

Voluntary turnover among sales professionals at technology firms is rising, with the highest rates at software companies. A number of factors are contributing to the increase: an improving job market, demand for cloud-based selling experience, and a growing field of innovative products. HR managers shouldn't feel defenseless, though. Find out what you can do to stem the turnover tide.

Accelerating Sales without Breaking the Bank

Most companies have sales commission accelerators in place. However, few are well-equipped to know if their accelerators are optimized to meet business needs. In this article, we explain how a data-driven approach can be used to design accelerator programs in-tune with both market trends and sales team performance.

As the Life Sciences Sector Soars, It's Time to Examine the Risks and Rewards of Your Annual Incentive Plan

Valuations for life sciences companies continue to soar, boosting stock prices and outside investment. For employees, the good news does not end there— annual incentive payouts are also on the rise. However, as above-target payouts become more prevalent, companies may want to consider raising the bar.

Boards Face Pressure to Ban Accelerated Vesting, but Market Practices Tell a Different Story

The number of shareholder proposals calling for bans on the acceleration of equity after a change-in-control is on the rise. So, too, is shareholder support for these initiatives. Radford's recent survey of severance practices at technology and life sciences companies shows that equity acceleration is still the norm, but policies in this area are slowly evolving.

Switzerland Reminds us of the Importance of Currency Conversions for Global Relative TSR Plans

When the Swiss Bank decided it would no longer tie the Swiss Franc (CHF) to the Euro, the value of the Swiss Franc skyrocketed, immediately impacting equity markets and foreign exchange traders. However, bankers were not the only ones affected by this move. The results of your global relative TSR plan could change as well. To find out why, read our latest expert insight.

Taking Stock of 13th and 14th Month Bonus Requirements in Latin America, Europe, and Asia

Global HR administration is hard work, especially when it comes to navigating the labyrinth of rules and regulations governing 13th and 14th month bonuses in Asia, Europe and Latin America. Fortunately, our colleagues in Aon Hewitt's Legislative Reporting practice have just published a fantastic summary of the global requirements you need to know.

Global Job Leveling at Radford: A Tailor-Made Approach for Companies Driven by Innovation

Our clients in the technology and life sciences sectors share many traits in common: they are innovative, they grow fast, and they need to be flexible. These traits demand a new approach to global job leveling, one that easily scales as companies mature and also evolves as firms add or acquire new types of talent.

ISS Releases Details of Scoring System Under New Equity Plan Scorecard Approach

This year, ISS is adding a number of factors to how it evaluates equity pay plan proposals beyond the cost of plan administration. Technology and life sciences companies, which often rely more heavily on equity for their overall pay mix at all levels of the organization, should be aware of how ISS's new scorecard approach could impact a favorable proxy vote.

As the German Technology Market Heats Up, Global Rewards Benchmarking Becomes Critical

A new digital economy has arrived in Germany, and its impacting every business sectors. Consequently, engineers are in high demand, but a shortage of talent is forcing companies to recruit from outside markets. Big differences in total compensation levels and pay practices across Europe, the United States and Asia mean German companies need to up their global benchmarking game.

Getting Severance Right: An Overview of Current Policies and Practices at US Technology Companies

Radford's 2014 Severance & Change-in-Control Practices Survey provides detailed information on how technology companies treat involuntary termination and change-in-control (CIC) scenarios on an organization-wide basis. At their core, severance programs did not change dramatically since our 2011 survey; however, we still observed several meaningful trends worth noting.

Getting Severance Right: An Overview of Current Policies and Practices at US Life Sciences Companies

Radford's 2014 Severance & Change-in-Control Practices Survey provides detailed information on how technology companies treat involuntary termination and change-in-control (CIC) scenarios on an organization-wide basis. At their core, severance programs did not change dramatically since our 2011 survey; however, we still observed several meaningful trends worth noting.

Managing Compensation Programs in the Face of Russia's Sudden Currency Devaluation

Depressed by Western economic sanctions and a sharp drop in the price of crude oil, Russia's economy and currency have weakened considerably in the past few months. This dramatic change is prompting multi-national companies to consider quick adjustments to pay programs for employees in Russia. We recently surveyed clients to see how they are tackling this issue.

Like "Check Engine" Light, Use Compensation Cost of Sales to Look for Trouble

In the January 2015 issue of WorldatWork's Sales Compensation Focus newsletter, Radford's Scott Barton discusses how key business metrics can be used to determine if your sales incentive plans are properly designed and functioning at maximum efficiency. Measuring the rate of change in sales costs vs. revenue growth is a simple step that can open up a world of insight.

SEC and FASB Disclosure Requirements for Holding Periods and Illiquidity Discounts

The adoption of mandatory post-vest holding requirements is on the rise, yet disclosures relating to illiquidity discounts associated with this governance practice are often lacking. Companies that fail to appropriately address the methods and assumptions used to quantify discounts could soon face more scrutiny.

Mandatory Post-Vest Holding Requirements: A New Approach for Mitigating Your Company’s Equity Compensation Expense

Companies often adopt mandatory post-vest holding requirements to achieve governance benefits, including the creation of a pathway for executives to meet ownership guidelines. However, holding periods, when designed to meet accounting standards, have significant potential to deliver valuation savings.

The Many Governance Benefits of Mandatory Post-Vest Holding Requirements

Although ownership guidelines and holding periods are increasingly common, few companies understand and take advantage of the full breadth of governance benefits associated with holding requirements. From building an ownership culture to enforcing clawbacks, there's more than meets the eye.

Maximize Your Investment in Equity Compensation and be a Good Corporate Citizen at the Same Time

Mandatory post-vest holding requirements are a rare find; they allow companies to maximize their investment in equity compensation while being a good corporate citizen at the same time. From numerous governance benefits to reduced accounting costs, holding periods are worth the investment.

Life Sciences Companies Are Increasingly Divided Over the Use of Salary Structures

Although a majority of life sciences companies still have salary structures, it's no secret that the use of formal salary systems is on the decline. New research from Radford shows this trend in action, but also points to why it could start to slow down soon.

Relative Total Shareholder Return (TSR) Plan Design Across the Atlantic

Performance-based equity plans with Relative TSR metrics arrived in Europe well before they showed up in the US. As plan design practices begin to mature in the US market, it's time to take a fresh look at what we can learn from the European experience.

Tracking Employee Promotion Practices across China, India, the United Kingdom and the United States

It's common knowledge that promotions lead to engaged employees. And while promotion rates at technology firms in the US are up, the same can't be said everywhere. New research from Radford explores promotion practices in China, India, the UK and the US.

Time is Money: Exploring the Costs of Hiring a CFO in Preparation for an Initial Public Offering

For private technology and life sciences companies on the path to an IPO, does it matter when you hire a CFO? When it comes to their pay, the surprising answer is that it all depends on how you look at it. Read our latest article to find out why.

Deciphering the Latest Compensation Trends in India

When it comes to benchmarking pay, India is not an easy market. With shifting labor pools, highly uneven annual increases in fixed compensation, and stark differences in pay between local firms and multinationals, getting rewards right in India is a big challenge.

Equity Strategy Across the Atlantic: Comparing and Contrasting Equity Practices at Big Pharma Companies in Europe and the United States

In this article, Radford's team in Europe conducts an in-depth, side-by-side comparison of big pharma equity practices in Europe and the US. The results reveal a few important similarities in equity strategy, and several striking differences, all of which point to new viewpoints on how best to attract and retain talent across the Atlantic with equity.

Linking a Broad-Based Equity Strategy to Higher Returns at US Biopharmaceutical Companies

While companies face intense outside pressure to reduce the costs of administering broad-based equity plans, new research from Radford indicates that high-performing biopharmaceutical companies are actually aggressive users of equity, both in terms of grant values and participation rates.

Restricted Stock Units (RSUs) Are Everywhere, But Are They Right For You?

For more than 10 years, the pendulum of equity compensation strategy has swung firmly in the direction of RSUs and away from stock options. Now it's time to ask a few hard questions: Is this shift in strategy working, and who wins and loses?

Disclosure Requirements for Relative TSR Plans: SEC Requirements for Form 10-K and Form 4 Filings

As the popularity of performance-based equity awards with relative TSR metrics surges, regulators, shareholders and proxy advisors are sure to pay closer and closer attention to plan disclosures. This article examines key disclosure requirements.

Percentile Rank: A Big Problem for Relative TSR Plans with Small Peer Groups

There's more than one way to calculate percentile rank, and the methodology choices you make could have a big impact on the results of your next performance-based equity grant with relative TSR metrics. Read this article to find out why.

Taking Control of Your Company's Executive Compensation Narrative

It might be hard to fathom in a world so often dominated by complex legalese, but taking a proactive, marketing-minded approach to communicating your executive compensation program is increasingly the safest way to travel in a rocky compensation governance landscape.

 

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