Community Corner

Technology enhancements help Schwab stock plan clients more effectively manage equity compensation plans



Charles Schwab has announced several key enhancements to its Schwab EquiView® recordkeeping system and Equity Award Center® website to improve the client experience for stock plan sponsors and their employees. 

“We know plan administrators place high value on innovative technology that helps them manage their stock plans more effectively and more efficiently. The enhancements we are announcing provide powerful new tools that streamline plan operations for our clients and help them do their jobs better and more easily, every day,” said Trish Cox, senior vice president of Corporate Brokerage Services at Schwab. 

Schwab EquiView – Exercise Restrictions Now Automated 

Monitoring and tracking non-U.S. participant transactions can be complex, and different countries often have different rules affecting what a participant can or can't do with their equity awards. To help reduce the risk of error and improve the participant experience, plan sponsors can now auto-assign exercise restrictions in Schwab EquiView. This helps minimize the risk of exercise errors since participants with restrictions against specific transaction types on their awards will not have the option to select those transaction types when placing a trade. 

Restrictions can be set around common transactions such as exercise-and-hold, same-day sale and sell- to-cover. For example, a business rule may take the form, “If Country equals China, then Same-day Sale only.” For convenience, plan sponsors can also assign an exercise restriction by including the appropriate code on the grant import file. 

Schwab EquiView - Deferral Functionality to Handle Restricted Stock Units 

As more and more plan sponsors offer restricted stock units as part of their stock programs, they need a recordkeeping system that can help them manage these complex grants. The recordkeeping and reporting functions in the Schwab EquiView system have expanded to include support for restricted stock unit deferral provisions. Enhancements include new data areas in EquiView to store deferral-related data, expanded capabilities to handle the appropriate tax treatment for restricted stock, and the addition of corporate and participant reporting to capture deferral events. 

Schwab EquiView Modeler™ Enables Scenario Testing and Team Training 

Schwab EquiView Modeler helps sponsors more effectively manage their stock plan programs through a duplicate, non-production environment of the EquiView recordkeeping system for testing and trial purposes. Through EquiView Modeler, plan sponsors can test various scenarios with their data, such as grant modeling or checking forfeiture rates and valuation, before actually implementing changes that affect plan administration and financial reporting. Sponsors can also use the modeler to help train new administrators without affecting live plan data and can preview new features in EquiView Modeler before they are introduced in EquiView. 

Plan Sponsor View into Equity Award Center® Improves Participant Experience 

Based on growing demand from sponsors to provide participants with additional support, sponsors can now view their participants’ accounts on Equity Award Center, Schwab’s website for stock plan participants. This allows the client to see a participant's equity award information as the participant sees it, in real time. Useful for troubleshooting and participant education, this feature also allows sponsors to review messages as they appear in the participant's Equity Award Center account, as well as review online grant agreements. To protect participant privacy, sponsors are not able to view select information such as participant trade transactions and personal information updates. 



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