Consultation on SAYE and SIP Employee share schemes
In a call for evidence launched recently, the UK government wants to hear views on Save As You Earn (SAYE) and the Share Incentive Plan (SIP), as it seeks to improve the schemes and expand their use by making it easier for businesses to set them up and offer them out to staff. The government is considering more simplified schemes to support business growth. The changes also aim to boost participation among low earners.
This comes as a HMRC evaluation report shows that 81% of businesses say these schemes help boost their business, with almost three quarters of these saying it has helped them retain and recruit staff. 31% of businesses which do not use these schemes say they are too complicated to set up.
The call for evidence comes after venture capital firm Index Ventures praised government reforms to a separate scheme, the Company Share Option Plan, placing the UK as joint top among G7 countries in share option policy.
These reforms saw a doubling of the amount of share options employees can be granted and removed restrictions on which kind of shares could be included. Index said the moves the government took were “helping scale ups attract and retain the talent they need”.
The government is looking to replicate this success through similar reforms for SAYE and SIP and is particularly interested in understanding whether the schemes are attractive to lower income earners.