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Share-based rewards

Making equity-based rewards work for your organisation

Tax-structured share schemes linked to appropriate performance-related targets provide an opportunity to deliver meaningful rewards among employees depending on the future success of the business. Some schemes offer equity throughout the workforce, while others focus exclusively on senior executives. Equity-based rewards can have a significant impact on staff retention, participation levels and personnel performance while managing remuneration costs through social security savings.

Create effective remuneration strategies

Our workforce team designs innovative remuneration strategies that not only promote loyalty, but also enhance the employer's brand. In this context, we advise a wide range of Irish-owned and multinational companies on all aspects of equity-based reward, including the effective administration of share plans.

Design, implement and administer

When considering equity-based reward, choosing the right plan, or plans, is vital. The issues you may need to consider include:

  • the consistency with your corporate goals;
  • obtaining shareholder and institutional investor approval;
  • motivating participants to achieve results;
  • keeping up with market best practice;
  • achieving Revenue approval (where necessary);
  • effectively communicating the key features to participants;
  • maximising value for money through appropriate performance measures;
  • tax effectiveness and the accounting treatment of various plans;
  • managing payroll costs; and
  • ensuring effective administration of shared plans.

To ease both the strategic and administrative burden, our expert team can help you design and develop effective equity-based reward plans, assist in the Revenue approval process and implement the plan. We can also create appropriate employee communications and assist with the ongoing administration and management of the plan where required.

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Employer-share reporting obligations

All employer-share reporting is due by 31 March following the tax year-end. The annual reporting obligations for employers who operate share schemes for their employees include:

  • Form RSS1: Share Option Plans;
  • Form ESS1: Revenue-Approved Profit Sharing Schemes (APSS);
  • Form SRSO1: Save As You Earn (SAYE) Schemes; and
  • Form ESA. This is an all-encompassing employer share scheme reporting return. All share awards (or cash-settled share awards) not otherwise reportable must be reported through this form.

Revenue's digital capability is continually evolving alongside increased scrutiny of employer returns. With that in mind, all returns should be submitted correctly and on time to avoid subsequent Revenue intervention.

Our team can help you ensure that your organisation's reporting obligations are met. We can also manage your organisation's employee communications regarding employees' personal reporting obligations.

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Contact us

Pat Mahon

Partner, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Tel: +353 86 172 6745

Sean Walsh

Director, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Tel: +353 85 142 4544

Sinead Kilgannon

Senior Manager, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Tel: + 353 87 614 6103

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