On January 1st, 2020, QPS became 100% employee-owned through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP), a program that provides shares of ownership to eligible employees. These shares, and their value, accumulate over time as the company grows. When an employee leaves the company or retires, they receive a financial benefit by cashing out the shares.
Becoming an ESOP company might be the most significant thing that’s happened to QPS and its employees. It’s not just an employee benefit – research shows that ESOPs provide job stability, a highly productive workforce, better growth and a wealth-building tool for employee-owners.
An Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) allows owners to sell a business in a way that benefits the company, employees and the selling business owners. Business owners sell shares of the company to a “Trust” (a buyer) who owns the shares on behalf of the company’s employees.
For employees, ESOPs are a wealth-building tool that grows over time for each employee-owner. At the onset, the benefit is minimal, but as the plan matures and the company performs, the benefits can grow quickly. ESOPs are regulated by federals laws, much like 401(k) plans, to ensure they are administered fairly and equitably. But there are two big differences from a 401(k) plan:
- When your actions positively affect the value of the company, you benefit directly because the value of your shares goes up. 401(k) plans, on the other hand, are dependent on the investments you choose.
- Employees do not put their own money into the ESOP. QPS grants this ownership at no cost to employees.
ESOPs can provide exceptional financial rewards for employees who stay with the company and think like owners – making prudent decisions as though they own the company. Employees of ESOP companies are focused on what’s best for the company in the long run.
Ownership offers each employee owner the opportunity to participate in QPS’s future. As an employee owner, you have a financial stake in the company. Your efforts to make QPS a success go a long way toward determining your individual personal rewards.
Over the years, studies have shown that ESOP companies grow faster after becoming employee-owned than would have been expected otherwise. These studies seem to provide strong evidence that ESOPs can make a significant and positive contribution to corporate performance. Other research, however, suggests that it is the combination of employee ownership and employee involvement that really makes the difference. Company performance can be improved by good work habits, efficiency, and conservation.
As an employee owner, you earn a year of vested service for each calendar year you work 1,000 hours. Your vested percentage is determined based on your vested service years:
Less than 2 years of service - 0%
2 years of service - 20%
3 years of service - 40%
4 years of service - 60%
5 years of service - 80%
6 years of service or more - 100%
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