United Kingdom

Employee Incentives 

We advise on all aspects of employee incentives and executive compensation, helping companies recruit, incentivise and retain the senior executives and key employees necessary to deliver their business goals. Through a multi-disciplinary team we are able to advise on the tax, regulatory, accounting, market practice and corporate governance aspects of UK and global employee incentive plans. Clients range from FTSE /AIM companies to unlisted companies, as well as multinational groups headquartered outside the UK.

What's on your mind


  • Recruiting, incentivising and retaining key employees to achieve business goals 
  • Managing the cost  and maximising the tax efficiency of executive and employee incentives 
  • Turnaround plans; incentivising executives for the upturn 
  • Compliance with the new financial sector remuneration code of practice 
  • Tax and regulatory compliance of global share plans; maximising local tax efficiency


Bringing you piece of mind


  • We have significant experience of advising on all of the following matters: 
  • Design and implementation of plans
    o Design and drafting of UK and global incentive plans
    o UK and overseas tax and regulatory advice
  • Tax effective plans for growth companies
  • Corporate transactions:
    o Advice on the share plan aspects of all types of deals
    o Design of bespoke exit and transaction-related plans
    o Post-IPO plans - market practice and implementation
  • Executive compensation:
    o Benchmarking of executive pay and incentives
    o Design and calibration of performance conditions
    o Corporate governance and shareholder consultation
  • Financial sector remuneration:
    o Advising on the impact of the FSA code of practice on pay policies and procedures
    o Designing and implementing new plans and procedures to reflect emerging best practice
  • Accounting, valuation and modelling:
    o IFRS 2 / FRS 20 valuation opinions / specialist advice
    o Share valuations for unlisted companies
    o Financing, hedging and modelling of plans
  • Ongoing operation of plans:
    o Ongoing care and maintenance of share plans.
    o Assistance with HMRC enquiries / reviews.
    o Web-based tools for global share plans.


What's in it for you?


  • Managing employee cost  
  • Maximising tax efficiency of executive and employee incentive plans 
  • Retention and motivation of senior executives and key employees 
  • Compliance with FSA code of practice on remuneration 
  • Operating shares plans in compliance with global tax and regulatory requirements




  • Our broad client base with significant representation in the FTSE 350, AIM and unlisted environments, as well as with multi-nationals, demonstrates our wide ranging technical expertise, practical experience and commercial know-how. 
  • Our multi-disciplinary team has senior specialists in key locations throughout the UK and access to employee incentive specialists in over 140 countries worldwide, offering both local specialists and access to truly global expertise 
  • We are able to provide comprehensive expertise across the tax, regulatory, accounting, share valuation, market practice and corporate governance aspects of employee incentivisation


Case study


  • Global bank
    o We carry out annual tax and regulatory reviews for a number of large global financial sector companies to help ensure that the different types of share plan they operate around the world are locally compliant as well as globally consistent. This has included implementing local tax-qualified arrangements where these work well and assisting with employee communications


  • FTSE company
    o We have worked on a number of turnaround plans and other bespoke plans for UK listed companies, ranging from leveraged plans designed to reward significant share price improvement to cash-based plans for companies operating predominantly outside the UK. More recent work includes enhancing the tax efficiency of existing deferred bonus and long-term incentive plans


  • AIM company
    o We advise a broad range of FTSE SmallCap and AIM companies across all sectors and have in-depth knowledge and experience of the opportunities and limitations with incentive plans for these groups of companies. Recent projects have included joint share plans, introducing executive and all-employee arrangements on listings, and advice on improved performance measures for new plans




David Ellis

David Ellis


KPMG in the UK

020 7311 2021


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KPMG’s Guide to Directors' Remuneration 2014

KPMG’s Guide to Executive Remuneration 2014 surveys market practice in relation to executive pay and incentives and non-executive directors’ fees in FTSE 350 companies over the past 12 months.

In the Boardroom with Lucy Marcus

Watch KPMG’s head of remuneration, David Ellis, discuss the role of pay advisers on Reuters’ “In the Boardroom with Lucy Marcus”.