StockOpter.com: System Overview Questions

StockOpter.com (www.stockopter.com) is a unique platform that provides equity compensation recipients and their financial advisors with information that facilitates informed and profitable diversification decisions.

StockOpter.com integrates proprietary decision metrics within customizable reports, interactive "what-if" dashboards and monitoring alert emails. An overview diagram of StockOpter.com is available at: https://stockopter.com/stockopter-overview/

Bill Dillhoefer   June 20, 2016  


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StockOpter.com and StockOpter Pro are both professional "Equity Compensation Diversification" tools but they are VERY different.

StockOpter.com is web-based, easy to use and creates a risk analysis client deliverable that serves as a framework for having a proactive diversification discussion with equity compensation recipients.

StockOpter Pro is an Excel add-in with a full tax engine that enables advisors to model and compared goal-based diversification scenarios over a 15 year horizon.

Refer to the following PDF document for details on the differences:
   StockOpter.com Vs. StockOpter/Pro Comparison Matrix

Bill Dillhoefer   April 6, 2019  


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Advisors: User Tips

Although StockOpter.com users can modify grant expiration and vesting dates/shares to model post employment provisions (e.g. Retirement, Severance, Termination, Change of Control, etc.), it is tedious to have to edit the grant data each time to switch between scenarios.

To avoid this click the "Add Company" button on the "Company Information" page to add a "dummy" company ticker to the participant's record (I.e. IBM2).  You can then enter an alternative set of grants to reflect specific post employment provisions.  Make sure the dummy ticker isn't an actual company to circumvent nightly price updates and irrelevant monitoring alerts.

Participant records are allowed to have a maximum of 3 associated company tickers, but since most clients receive equity compensation from a single company the spare tickers can be used for modeling purposes.  The alternative holdings can then be viewed in the StockOpter Dashboards to run what-ifs and printed as reports to give to clients.  Keep in mind you will have to manually change the stock price to generate an updated "alternative" analysis.

Bill Dillhoefer   May 22, 2016  


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We occasionally receive technical support calls or emails reporting that StockOpter.com is not functioning correctly in a situation where the user is familiar with what should be happening. This is entirely different from support calls where the user is new to a particular function in StockOpter.com and hasn't reviewed the HELP text. In these situations we remind users to always read our help text when they get stuck.

Situations where the system isn't working the way it has in the past are usually due to problems with ones browser application (i.e. Edge, Chrome, Internet Explorer, etc.) or with their internet connection. When this happens we suggest doing the following:

  1. Logoff StockOpter.com
  2. Close your browser
  3. Restart your browser
  4. Log back on to StockOpter.com
  5. Resume what you were doing

You may even need to restart your computer. If this doesn’t solve the problem, send a note to stockopter@networthstrategies.com and we'll take action to resolve it.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 20, 2016  


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Financial advisory firms interested in acquiring new high net worth clients and assets under management by engaging executives with equity compensation grants can use this outline (or attachment) to implement an executive assistance program:     Implementing-Executives-Services-w-StockOpter

Overview:

This list of tasks is designed to assist financial advisory firms to implement an Equity Compensation Assistance program using StockOpter.com.  For additional information contact Bill Dillhoefer at bdillhoefer@networthstrategies.com or 541-383-3899.

Tasks:

  1. Establish detailed project plan (e.g. tasks, dates, responsibilities, costs)
  2. Define the Executive Services Offering (questions that need to be answered):
    • Who is the target market: clients, prospects, companies ?
    • What are the deliverables:
      • Personal Equity Compensation Profile Report?
      • Quarterly report updates and review session with advisors?
      • Nightly monitoring of individual’s diversification criteria monitoring?
      • Online “Participant” access to do what-ifs?
    • What is the dollar value of these services and when are the fees waived?
    • How is this program marketed and to whom (i.e. Companies or Individuals)
    • Who is involved in the delivery of these services?
    • What is the process for getting referrals?
    • How is this program measured for success?
  3. Review StockOpter.com Data Privacy and Security documents:
    • Detailed information can be found at under the “StockOpter.com for Advisors FAQs in Advisors: Data Privacy / Security topic
    • NWSI ISO 17799 document (detailed security information)
    • NWSI Data Security and Policies document
  4. Setup StockOpter.com System:
    • Establish account at: https://stockopter.com/stockopter-products/stockopter-com-for-advisors/
    • Create sample “Participant” case for testing and training purposes
    • Review “Import” and “Prospect” functions for potential corporate offering
    • Create company branded and approved report template using standard templates
    • Create UserIDs and set appropriate functionality level
    • Establish participant data access standards (who can see/modify which clients)
    • Review monitoring alert defaults and determine who they are sent to (i.e. main contact advisor, participant or both)
    • Review and modify “Alert” templates as necessary
    • Review “Participant Site” functionality using test case for potential use
    • Contact Net Worth Strategies to discuss customization requirements
  5. Define & Document StockOpter.com Usage Process (e.g.…..):
    • Acquire equity compensation data (electronic for groups or individual grant summaries for manual entry)
    • Enter/import data into StockOpter.com and verify via Dashboards
    • Select report template and create reports (individually or in batch)
    • Share analysis with client via StockOpter report and/or online dashboards
    • Take action as required and update data on StockOpter.com (e.g. grants exercised or shares sold)
    • Set or modify monitoring alerts based on participant criteria (e.g. next review date, Insight ratio, concentration, grant expiration, vesting, goal attainment, etc.)
    • Contact participant when alerts are triggered
    • Setup periodic review sessions with participant (i.e. quarterly) and produce updated report for discussion
  6. User training:
    • System Administrators
      • System admin (e.g. UserID creation, usage monitoring, etc.)
      • System setup (see above)
      • General functions
      • Data access controls
    • Financial Planners (create the analysis/report)
      • Analysis concepts
      • Data entry / importing
      • Dashboards
      • Report creation
      • Alert monitoring
      • Participant access
    • Relationship Advisors (deliver/explain the analysis)
      • Analysis concepts
      • Dashboards
      • Participant access
      • Alert monitoring
  7. Conduct Pilot Program (to confirm process and make adjustments)

Bill Dillhoefer   June 20, 2016  


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The monitoring function of StockOpter.com is probably its most powerful and useful feature. This is because it automatically alerts users and/or plan participants by email of critical decision triggers based on the daily closing stock price.

Decision triggers are set for individual participants and include: grant vesting or expiration, Insight/VaR ratios, goal attainment, concentration level, stock price and participant case review or renewal date (e.g. Insight Ratio < 10%, Expiration = 6 months prior, etc.). Here's a brief overview of how to use the monitoring function to help participants make timely and prudent decisions regarding their company stock and options:

  1. From the Monitoring menu select: Participants to Monitor and review the HELP Text, How to Video and Disclaimer information.
  2. Identify the participants you wish to set monitoring triggers for and click the Triggers (decision values) or Reminders (decision dates) link. The adjacent Emails link will show a list of the archived alerts for this participant.
  3. Click the New Trigger or New Reminder button and select the Type and Criteria/Period from the drop downs. Enter criteria values and then check the appropriate recipient boxes for who the alert should be sent to (Main User and/or Participant) and choose the Template from the drop down. Lastly, check the Active box.
  4. Create as many different trigger/reminders for each participant as needed and Edit or Delete them as required. HINT: set a "Participant Renewal Alert" to let you know when their case renews so you can control this billable event (use the Active Participants function under My Accounts to control the Auto Renew process)
  5. The archive of triggered alerts can be viewed using the My Alerts or Company Alerts functions. The Participant Alerts function archives all the triggered alerts that were set by participants from the "Participant Site".
  6. The Alert Types functions allow authorized users to customize the alert template: NOTE: the disclaimers must not be altered or removed.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 20, 2016  


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Just because a stock option is "underwater" (current price less then the exercise/grant price) doesn't mean it is worthless.  Stock options have a value greater than just the intrinsic or in-the-money value due mainly to stock price volatility and the time to expiration.  This is called "Time Value".  StockOpter.com calculates this value and explains why participants need to understand it to make informed decision.

Stock options are generally granted for a period of 7 to 10 years so it's likely that they will be in-the-money at some point.  Consequently it is a good idea to use StockOpter.com to track the grant over its lifetime in order to help clients make timely diversification decisions based on decision triggers and important dates.

The attached article by John Olsen, CLU, ChFC, AEP does a good job of explaining why "Under water" doesn't necessarily mean "drowned".

File Attachment(s):
   John Olsen Review of StockOptercom 3-17-09.pdf   (20kb)

Bill Dillhoefer   June 20, 2016  


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StockOpter.com users can allow participants to sign on to the system to facilitate collaboration with their advisors.  The participant interface enables clients to:

  1. Update their outstanding grants (e.g add new grants/vesting's, delete expired grants, update exercise/sale transactions, etc.)
  2. Modify their personal assumptions (e.g. tax rates, held shares, diversified investment value, etc.)
  3. Create an updated report using the current stock price and modified assumptions
  4. Model "what-ifs" using the Dashboards
  5. Set decision monitoring alerts (participants are emailed when the triggers are met)

To enable participant access: 1) Verify the participant's email address on the Participant Information page (the participant's email address serves as their user name to sign on to StockOpter.com), 2) From the Participant menu select the "Enable Participant Access" function (requires Level 2, 4 or 5 user status), 3) Use the column filters to identify the participant and click the "Edit" link, 4) On the form check the "Active" box, enter a temporary "Password" (the participant will be prompted to change this upon initial logon) and hit the "Update" link. More information on this can be found in the help text panel.

Note: Participant access is automatically disabled upon expiration or de-activation. It can also be manually disabled by un-checking the "Active" box.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 20, 2016  


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StockOpter.com is designed to be shared with participants. Here are a few ways to do this:

  • Create a report from the "Reports" menu and take them thru it in person or over the phone
  • Use the Dashboards to describe the StockOpter concepts to the participant either in person or via a web-conference
  • Enable Participant Access to let them sign-on to StockOpter.com to create a report or use the Dashboards (this should initially be done under the guidance of an advisor.)

Note: For more information on enabling participant access see the separate usage tip on this topic.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Participant/Client cases in StockOpter.com will generally renew automatically one year after creation and annually thereafter.

To change the Auto Renew setting: 1) From the "My Account" menu select "Active Participants" (this requires Levels 3-5 user status), 2) Use the column filters to identify the participant and verify the current renewal and service option selections, 3) Click the "Change" link to modify the Service Option from the drop down list, check or un-check the Auto Renew box as required and hit the "Update" link. For more information see the help panel "?".

Note: Participant cases that have been changed so as not to renew automatically can be accessed and monitored through the current renewal date. Upon expiration, participant cases are de-activated and can be re-activated at any time using the "Activate Participants" function in the "Participants" menu (this is a billable event).

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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The initial StockOpter.com user in a company by default has access to the participants created by any system user. However, additional StockOpter.com users have access to only the participants they create unless they are provided with "All Participant Access" or are granted individual access by the "Main User".

To enable a company user to access all participants in the system: 1) From the "Security Setup" menu select the "All Participant Access" function (this requires Level-5 user status). 2) Click the "Add User" button, select a user name from the drop down list and hit the "Update" link.

NOTE: The user must be created using the "Company Users" function beforehand.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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The participant reports created using StockOpter.com can automatically include your company branding and disclaimers by adding it to the report templates.

Steps: From the "Reports" menu select the "Manage Templates" function and "Download" the template you would like to brand. When prompted, "Open" the file, copy your logo to the page header and do a "Save As" to rename the template. Then hit the StockOpter.com "Add Template" button to upload it back to the system. More information can be found in the "Manage Company Templates" page help and in the "Report Template" FAQs.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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StockOpter.com was designed to be used by multiple users within the same company. This feature facilitates the collaboration of people who need to share client cases. There is NO cost for creating additional users for your StockOpter.com account.  Furthermore, the sharing StockOpter user IDs is HIGHLY discouraged because it increases security risk.

Steps: From the "Security Setup" menu select the "Company Users" function and hit the "New User" button. Additional information about this function can be found on the "Company Users" page and in the "My Account/Administration" FAQs.  Access to the "Company Users" function requires a Level 5 user type.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Advisors: Participants Menu

Yes! Use the attached document.

NOTE: The form does not request additional required assumptions such as volatility, risk free rate, financial goal or tax rates. It is up to the StockOpter.com user to estimate these assumptions.

File Attachment(s):

 StockOpter Analysis Client Data Requirements (57kb)

Bill Dillhoefer   June 1, 2016  


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The following information is needed from your client in order to run an analysis in StockOpter.com:

  • Current grant summary with vesting schedule
  • The estimated value of the client’s outside investments not including any company stock or options (1 number)
  • The total quantity and approximate cost basis of any company shares owned outright

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Yes, when users add new participants they are given the option to create the case from scratch or clone/replicate one from an an active or inactive case.

Participant replication or cloning may reduce the amount of data entry required to setup a new case especially if the new participant has a number of similar grants from the same company.

NOTE: New participants must have unique "Participant IDs" and contact information.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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YES! Use the Create Transfer File function under the Participants Menu to download an Excel file containing selected participants' data and then import it back into StockOpter.com using the Import Transfer File Prompt function under the Import Menu.

NOTE: View the Help panels for each function for detailed instructions.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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StockOpter.com does not automatically update/remove past vesting events and expired grants on the “Grant Input” or “Vesting Input” pages because our policy is not to alter user inputs. However, vesting events and expiration's ARE calculated correctly in the Dashboards and Report tables (with the exception of the Grant Summary / Future Vesting tables and Vesting Events Dashboard which reflect what was input). Users need to delete expired and exercised option grants and to adjust the "Owned" share and "VDP" values when restricted stock grants vest.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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The system will automatically send an email alert to the account Main Contact 7 days prior to a participant coming up for renewal. Users can also choose to set up their own alert for a participant with other date ranges if so desired. To do this you will need to go to the "Monitoring" section, select "Participants to Monitor", find the participant, click the "Reminders" link, click the "New Reminder" button, using the drop down on the field "Reminder Type" choose "Participant Renewal Date" and finish entering the criteria for the Reminder. You can also access the Help section by clicking on the "?" box in each section for further instructions.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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No. All data entered into StockOpter.com is never deleted. De-activating a participant will take them out of your active list of participants and can be re-activated at any time using the "Activate Participant" function.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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You can grant other users in your company account access to your participants by selecting the participant and using the "Participant User Access" tab. Please refer to the HELP text for additional information.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Under the "Participant" menu, select "Activate Participants", search for the participant and hit the Activate button.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Under "Participants", select "De-activate Participants", search for the participant to de-activate and hit the de-activate button. Please be aware that if you de-activate a participant before the renewal date, you will no longer be able to access that participant unless you activate them again.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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In order for a participant case NOT to renew automatically at the end of a subscription period an authorized user must go to "My Account" and select the "Active Participants" function. You will then need to select the participant, hit "change", uncheck the auto renew box and click the "update" link. This will ensure that the participant is not renewed at the end of the subscription period but will allow access to the participant until that date is reached, at which time the participant will be deactivated.

Participant cases can also be deactivated using the "De-activate Participants" function from the "Participants" menu. Deactivation takes affect immediately so it might be better to use the "Active Participants" function.

Note: If a participant does not renew or is deactivated they are no longer accessible or monitored. Deactivated participants can be re-activated at any time using the "Activate Participants" function from the "Participants" menu.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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StockOpter.com is designed to support an unlimited number of vesting events and multiple schedules (e.g., annual, quarterly, monthly, etc.). For a vesting schedule that first vests annually after one year and then monthly for 3 years, enter these periods separately.  The vesting table on the right will be updated accordingly.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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NO. This is a violation of our services agreement. Participant cases can't be used for multiple clients. The exception to this is husband and wife participants.

Bill Dillhoefer   April 2, 2018  


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Advisors: Report Templates

The StockOpter.com client report templates are Word documents containing variable tags (e.g. TICKERTAG) and table bookmarks (e.g. ITM) that are used to merge data from the program into a report. The system comes with a variety of sample templates to assist users to develop their own. The "All Tags" template lists the names of all available output variables and bookmarks.

Note: Users are free to create custom branded templates but a registered StockOpter copyright must be preserved at the bottom of each page.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2015  


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The following report templates are included with a subscription to StockOpter.com. They can be customized using the "Manage Templates" function under the "Reports" menu by "Level 5" users only. When run using the "Create Reports" function these templates produce reports that serve specific purposes. StockOpter's client deliverable templates can be used as output or as a framework for building your own custom branded deliverables.

*YEAR SO Analysis (Options & Owned): This report is for clients with only employee stock option grants and owned or long shares. It excludes the sections pertaining to Restricted / Performance shares.

*YEAR SO Analysis (Options ONLY): This report is for clients with only employee stock option grants. It excludes the sections pertaining to Restricted / Performance and Owned shares.

*YEAR SO Analysis (Restricted & Owned Shares): This version of the StockOpter report is designed for clients who just have restricted/performance and owned/long shares. It excludes sections pertaining to employee stock options.

*YEAR SO FULL Analysis (Options, Restricted & Owned): This report is for participants who have stock options, restricted/performance grants and owned/long shares. It provides a comprehensive analysis of the clients company stock and option holdings.

*YEAR SO SHORT Analysis (Options, Restricted & Owned): This report is a shorter version of the "FULL" StockOpter Report for Options, Restricted and Owned shares (see above). It is ideal for providing clients with periodic updates.

*All Output List (NOT a Client Deliverable): Displays all the output (e.g. data input tags, tables & charts, and calculated values) that can be produced by StockOpter.com for a selected participant. It is designed to be a comprehensive list of the different information that can be included in StockOpter reports.

NOTE: The old Benefit Statement, Report CoversPolicy Statements and Teaser templates have been deactivated.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 13, 2016  


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  1. "Download" the template using the "Manage Templates" function under the "Reports" menu in StockOpter.com. This will open a Word document on your system.
  2. Go to the place in the document where you want to add the new table and use the "Insert" function to insert a "Bookmark".
  3. In the bookmark dialogue box enter the name of bookmark (e.g. LA3) and click the "Add" button. A list of all the StockOpter table/chart bookmarks can be found in the "All Tags" report using the "Insert Bookmark" function in Word.
  4. After completing the bookmark dialogue, enter a description of the new table (e.g. LA3TABLE) on the line where the invisible bookmark was placed (this allows you to easily locate the bookmark). You can also add descriptive text above or below the bookmark at this time.
  5. Use the "Save As" function to save your new template with another name.
  6. Use the "Add Template" button on the "Manage Company Templates" page. In the dialogue box enter a description, browse for the saved template file, check the "Active" box and click the "Save/Upload Template" button.

That's it. Now you can select this template when you are producing reports and it will include the new table or chart.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Yes, the CURRENT StockOpter All Tags template includes all the current report variables.

Note: Reports created by this template are NOT designed to be used with clients.

To view the template itself (no client data just the data replacement variables), use the Manage Templates function under the Reports menu and Download the template.

To produce a report containing all the tables, charts and data produced by StockOpter.com, use the Create Reports tab after selecting the client and choose All Output List (alternatively you can use the functions under the Reports menu).

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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To force a participant report to paginate as desired automatically when run, you must open and edit the template in Word (refer to the Reports FAQ on "Page Breaks" on how to do this).

Go to the location of the pagination error in the template and highlight it using your mouse. In Word 2010, 2013 and 2016 use the dialog launcher located in the bottom right corner of the Paragraph group of the ribbon on the Home tab to access the dialog box. Then select the "Line and Page Breaks" tab.

To keep a section of the report together so that it doesn't break between two page check the boxes for: Keep Lines Together and Keep with Next. After completing your changes, Save, Upload and test your template by creating a report. You may have to go thru multiple iterations to get the template to paginate the way you want it. For more information on how to "Control Pagination" in Word use the help function.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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StockOpter.com uses tags and Word bookmarks to merge data into report templates. Tags are used for single variables and are displayed with capital letters (e.g. CLIENTNAME = Sally Sample or CURRENTPRICE = $50). Word bookmarks are used for tables and charts (e.g. ITM = In-the-money value table or CON = concentration graph).

NOTE: Word bookmarks are managed using the "Bookmarks" function on the "Insert" menu.The bookmark label (i.e. ITMTABLE) is for identification purposes only and is NOT the bookmark itself. Bookmarks can't be copied or moved manually. To add, delete or go to a bookmark use the "Insert/Bookmark" function.

To view the position of bookmarks check the "Show Bookmarks" box under the "Advanced" section of the "Options" menu on the "File" tab in Word 2010, 2013 and 2016.

The text following the bookmark symbols in the StockOpter.com templates is for identification purposes only and is not part of the bookmark itself. This text is removed during the report creation process.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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You will need to download the template you want to modify from the "Manage Templates" page using the "Download" link. This will give you the option to "Open" or "Save" the template on your computer so it can be edited in Word. Once you've completed and saved your modifications you will need to either replace the existing template using the "Upload" link or use the "Add" button to add a new template. Read the HELP text on the Manage Templates page for more information.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Level 5 users can add and remove the report templates listed when creating client deliverable report by using the Manage Templates function on the Reports menu to activate and deactivate templates. Only "Active" templates show up on the various report selection lists. For more information refer to the HELP text on "Manage Templates" page.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Advisors: Reports Menu

No, but the "Investment Risk/Reward" section of the StockOpter report contains tables and graphs that show options and share valuations at various different stock prices.

Bill Dillhoefer   January 24, 2016  


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If you don't have MS Office installed on your computer you may not be able to "Open" participant reports that have been downloaded from StockOpter.com. The system may prompt you to either "Find" an application that can open a ".docx" file or "Save" the report. Some systems (i.e. Apple) have the ability to view Microsoft Word files.

There are a variety of no cost ways to open a Word document without having Microsoft Office installed. Here are 3 alternatives, but there are probably others that can be found by searching the internet.

  1. Obtain the "Word Viewer" from the Microsoft Download Center. This function will allow you to view, copy and print Word documents but you won't be able to edit them.
  2. Download and install "Open Office" from www.openoffice.org. This open source application will allow you to edit .docx files as well spreadsheets and presentations.
  3. Upload the .docx file to "Google Docs". You will need to sign up for a Google Account, but you will be able to view and edit .docx files, spreadsheets and presentations.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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StockOpter participant report page break problems are usually a result of merging a large number of grants into the report template. Participant reports with more than 7 option or RSA grants may not paginate as desired. You can fix the page breaks in the report manually using the "Insert/Breaks" function in Word, but this treats the symptom not the cause and the participant's report will paginate incorrectly each time it is run. To automatically paginate participant reports you will need to modify the report template as follows:

An authorized user can modify templates from the "Manage Templates" function in the "Reports" menu. To edit a template click the "Download" link and then "Open" this document for editing in Word. To change the way a report paginates you will need to adjust the "Line and Page Breaks" setting in the "Format/Paragraph" function. After the adjustments are made the template must be "Saved" and then "Uploaded". For more information on adjusting the "Line and Page Breaks" in Word review the "Report Templates" FAQs.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Using the "Manage Templates" function, templates can be modified by clicking the "Download" link which will "Open" or "Save" the template for editing in Word. You can then use the "Upload" link to replace the existing template but we strongly suggest using the "Add" button to create a new template. This will preserve the original template so you can modify it again if needed.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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This is because a template has not yet been selected or remembered. Choose a template from the drop-down list and the "Download" links will be activated.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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This is because the grant data has not been entered for the selected participant.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Advisors: Monitoring Menu

When participant cases are created in StockOpter.com the system automatically applies the following default monitoring triggers (values) and reminders (dates) to keep advisors informed by email of key decision criteria without having to set these up manually:

* Trigger: Insight Ratio < 15%
* Reminder: Grant Vesting - 1 day prior
* Reminder: Grant Expiration - 6 months prior
* Reminder: Grant Expiration - 1 month prior

Default triggers and reminders serve as "early warnings" to alert users to look into the participant's situation. A participant's individual triggers or reminders can then be modified or delayed as required using the "My Alerts" function under the "Monitoring" menu.

To modify or add to the defaults, use the "Company Default Trigger/Reminder" functions under the "Monitoring" menu (requires Level 5 access). Information on how to use these functions is provided via the "HELP" text.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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No. Once a participant case is no longer active via non renewal or de-activation all monitoring activity ceases. If the participant is re-activated, any formerly established "Triggers" and "Reminders" will commence monitoring again at that time.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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StockOpter.com runs a nightly monitoring program at around 8 p.m. (PST) using the closing market price to send participant alert emails to the "Main User" and/or the participant themselves of any "Triggers" or "Reminders" whose criteria have been met.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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You will receive an email with a link that takes you to the "My Alerts" page upon login where you can view the alert, change the criteria or delay it for a specific number of days (i.e. for Blackout Periods).

You can also view alerts after logging on to StockOpter.com in the following ways:

  1. Clicking the "You have # alerts waiting for you"
  2. Using the "Participants to Monitor" function and clicking the "Emails" link for the participant
  3. Using the "My Alerts" function (Main Users)
  4. Using the "Company Alerts" function (Level 5 Users)
  5. Using the "Participant Alerts" function (Shows the alerts set by the participant.)

Bill Dillhoefer   June 21, 2016  


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Advisors: Import Menu

Yes, the "Import" menu that is accessible to user Levels 3-5 enables users to import Participant, Company and Grant information from Excel files into StockOpter.com. For more information on this function read the "HELP" text on the Import Prompt page.

Note: The import spreadsheets need to be in a very specific format so if you are only importing 1 or 2 client cases at a time, it is quicker to enter the data manually.The import function is best suited for entering groups of clients by firms that do stock plan administration.

Unfortunately, there is NO data aggregation service that provides outstanding stock plan grant and share information.

Net Worth Strategies can build a custom import interface that simplifies the standard process for firms that have online access to company stock plan data. Contact Bill Dillhoefer for more information.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Advisors: My Account Menu & System Administration

Don't panic. There are links on the StockOpter Login Page that will allow you to identify your user name and reset your password.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Yes, there is a Failed Login Report under the My Account menu. Users need Level 5 access for this function which lets them view and export a list of failed login attempts by any of their company User Ids.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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If you are logged on to StockOpter.com there is a View Terms link on the My Account page that will display the StockOpter.com Managed Hosting Services Agreement.

Alternatively, you can find a link to our Hosting Services Agreement under the Legal tab on this website page: https://stockopter.com/stockopter-products/stockopter-com-for-advisors/

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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No, there is no charge for adding StockOpter users. Accounts are encouraged to create separate user IDs for anyone who will be using the system and calling NWSI for support. To add or deactivate users, click the Company Users function under the Security Setup menu (Level 5 users only).

By default StockOpter users can ONLY access the participants they create unless they are given All Participant Access under the Security Setup menu.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Go to the My Account menu and select the My Company function. Find the User ID in the Main User Contact drop down list or Billing User drop down list, make your selection and hit the Update Company button.

Note: you will need to create the user with the Company Users function if they don't already have a StockOpter User ID.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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StockOpter.com was designed to be used by multiple users within the same company. This facilitates collaboration between people who need to share client cases. Level 5 (Admin) access is required to add, change or deactivate StockOpter.com users.

Steps: From the Security Setup menu select the Company Users function and hit the New User button.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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StockOpter.com has 5 different user levels (Levels 1 - 5) that provide users with different types of functionality. Level 1 contains the lowest level of functionality and Level 5 the highest. The link below contains descriptions of each level and a matrix of the permitted functions.

https://app.stockopter.com/Security/LevelPageNew.aspx

Custom company user levels can be setup for a fee. Contact NWSI at stockopter@networthstrategies.com or 541-383-3899 to discuss your requirements.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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There are 3 different places for changing StockOpter passwords:

  1. Users can reset their password on the StockOpter Login page
  2. After login, users can go to the My Account menu , select the My Account function and then click Change Password link at the bottom of the page
  3. Level 5 (Admin) users can reset passwords using the Company Users function under the Security Setup menu using the Passwords link

.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Advisors: Participant Case Access Controls

There are 2 ways to let other StockOpter users in your company to access the client cases you've created (this assumes these user DON'T have All Participant Access).

  1. To give a user access to ALL of your participants go to the My Account function on the My Account menu and use the Allow Users window. Click the New link and select a current user from the drop down. If the desired user is not in this list they will have to be added by a Level 5 administrator using the Company Users function under the Security Setup menu. Access to view but not change your participant data is granted by checking the Read Only box. For more information on the Allow Users function refer to the HELP text on that page.
  2. To give a user access to only a specific participant use the Participant User Access tab after selecting the participant with the Add/Select function under the Participant menu. Start with reading the HELP text then use the New link to add users via the drop down. The list of users can be managed using the "Edit" and "Delete" links. Check the Read Only box if you don't want the user to be able to modify the participant's data.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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The initial StockOpter.com user set up in your account by default has access to all the participants created by any other user. However, additional StockOpter.com users have access to only the participants they create unless they are provided with All Participant Access or are granted access by the Main User (the user who initially created the participant case).

To enable a user to access all participants in the company account: 1) From the Security Setup menu select the All Participant Access function (this requires Level-5 user status). 2) Click the Add User button, select a user name from the drop down list and hit the Update link.

NOTE: the user must be created using the Company Users function beforehand.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Advisors: Data Privacy / Security

A comprehensive security questionnaire for StockOpter.com was completed in October 2016. This document is available at the link below.

Note: subsequent to the completion of this questionnaire the StockOpter application was moved from Rackspace to Microsoft Azure. The Azure data center is located in Des Moines, IA.

File Attachment(s):
  Net Worth Strategies, Inc. - StockOpter.com Security Questionnaire  (102kb)

Bill Dillhoefer   October 20, 2014  


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StockOpter.com has separate development, test/quality and production environments. All modifications to the system are coordinated by the VP of Operations as follows:

  1. Modifications are specified in writing to the "Development Team" by the VP of Operations
  2. The Development Team then creates the code on our development environment
  3. When the modifications are ready for testing the Development Team promotes the new code to the Test/QA environment
  4. The "Test/QA Team" then thoroughly tests the modifications which often takes several iterations
  5. Upon completion of testing and acceptance by the Test/QA Team, the new code is promoted to the production system by the "Production Team"
  6. A final test of the modification is done on the production system by the Production Team

Bill Dillhoefer   June 20, 2016  


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Net Worth Strategies, Inc. pledges that all information collected on our Web sites will be used for internal purposes only. No information will be shared, given, or in any way distributed to any third parties, other than the minimum data needed to complete a credit card purchase.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Here is the most current Microsoft Azure SOC/2 report that audits the hosting environment used by StockOpter.com.

File Attachment(s):
  Azure-SOC-2-Report  (2,190kb)

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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    • Q: Where is the source code located?
    • A: StockOpter.com is not a compiled program so the source code exists on the NWSI Development machine and the Azure server.

 

    • Q: Are there specific control management tools used to manage the StockOpter.com source code?
    • A: No.

 

    • Q: Who has access to the source code and how is access granted or controlled?
    • A: Only the NWSI development team has access to the source code and access is granted by the head of development.

 

    • Q: What is the DR / redundancy strategy of source code?
    • A: NWSI does a nightly backup of the source code machine and the Azure server is a backed up weekly.

 

    • Q: How are changes to source code tracked and approved?
    • A: By NWSI development team and the head of development.

 

    • Q: Can anything be published that did not go through an approval process?
    • A: No.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Detailed security information pertaining to StockOpter.com can be found in the attached ISO 17799 document. Note that since this document was created, the StockOpter application has been moved from Rackspace to Microsoft Azure.

File Attachment(s):
  NWSI ISO 17799 StockOpter-com 4-18-12.xls  (83kb)

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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StockOpter.com user passwords are stored as a salted sha-1 hash (e.g. Base64{sha1[password.salt]). The salt is a minimum of 8 bytes in length and is generated using a random number generator. There is a unique salt per password and the salt is stored in a separate column of the database and is not encrypted. To verify passwords the user’s input is concatenated with the user's salt and a sha1 hash performed to compare it to the password. If they match, the user is logged in.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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The StockOpter.com database retains all participant records indefinitely (deactivated cases can be reactivated using the Activate Participants function. Participant cases can be permanently removed from the database for a fee upon request.

Tape backup media and disk drives containing StockOpter.com data will be DOD Secure Wiped when no longer needed.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Yes! Net Worth Strategies, Inc. currently uses Microsoft Azure (https://azure.microsoft.com) to host StockOpter.com. We switched hosting service providers in January 2017. We were previously using Rackspace. Here is our current Network Diagram - Azure.

 

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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User Names:

  • Are created by authorized users (Level-5)
  • Can contain letters (case does not matter), numbers or special characters (i.e. JOE.USER1)
  • The minimum length = 5 and the maximum = 20 characters
  • Can't be changed or removed from the system after creation (they can be deactivated / disabled)
  • Must be unique within StockOpter.com
  • Should NOT be assigned to multiple user for security reasons
  • Do not automatically expire from inactivity (an authorized user must deactivate them)
  • Created and managed by authorized company users as required

Passwords:

  • Minimum length = 5 characters, maximum = 20 characters
  • Passwords can't contain user names
  • Any combination of upper/lower case letters, numbers and special characters is allowed
  • Users can reset their passwords at any time (they will receive an email confirmation)
  • Fail attempts are logged

Custom Password Validation Settings:

  • Minimum & maximum lengths can be specified (max can't exceed 20)
  • Number of day to reset password
  • Can be set to require an upper case, lower case, number or special character
  • Users locked out after X number of failed attempts
  • Passwords must not match X pervious passwords (max 10)
  • Setup fee to implement these validations: $250 / account
  • Additional password validations can be provided via custom development

Contact Bill Dillhoefer at 541-383-3899 or bdillhoefer@networthstrategies.com for more info.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Yes. The entire StockOpter SQL database is encrypted using the AES encryption algorithm and a 128 bit key.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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A "Dynamic" penetration test was performed by Veracode (www.veracode.com) on May 27th 2017 on the StockOpter.com application (https://app.stockopter.com) hosted by Microsoft Azure.  No "Very High," "High" or "Medium" security flaws were identified.    Only 4 "Low" issues were detected.  For more information and/or a copy of the Summary Report contact Bill Dillhoefer.

Bill Dillhoefer   May 30, 2017  


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Advisors: Pricing & Terms

Please see the attached "Hosted Services Agreement." (Below)

File Attachment(s):
  SO.com Click Thru Agreement  (196kb)

Bill Dillhoefer   April 1, 2018  


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NO. This is a violation of our services agreement. Participant cases can't be used for multiple clients. The exception to this is husband and wife participants.

Bill Dillhoefer   April 2, 2018  


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StockOpter.com is a pay per use system based on annual client/participant cases. StockOpter accounts need to be pre-funded with case "tokens" which are used to create or renew participants.

The cost per case token varies based on purchase volume.  Current pricing can be found under the Pricing tab on the StockOpter.com for Advisors page.

To setup a StockOpter.com account and view payment options go to the Account Setup form.

To add to your account token balance, sign-on to StockOpter.com and use the Add Case Tokens to Account function under the My Account menu.

Currently case tokens do not expire however, unused tokens are non-refundable.

Bill Dillhoefer   April 3, 2018  


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To view or download your account activity go to the My Account menu and select Account Transaction Report. This will display payments to increase the number of client case tokens and client case usage transactions for adds, renewals and reactivates

Note: Effective April 1, 2018 account balances have been converted from dollars to annual client case tokens. Prior account transactions can be viewed and downloaded using the Account Transaction Archive function under the My Account menu.

Bill Dillhoefer   April 4, 2018  


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Yes. StockOpter.com sends the Main Contact of the account and the Main User of the participant/client an email notification 7 days in advance of a scheduled renewal. The participant's Main User can set an additional alert by using the Participants to Monitor function under the Monitoring menu as follows:

  1. Selecting the participant
  2. Click the Reminders link
  3. Click the New Reminder button
  4. Using the drop down on the field Reminder Type choose Participant Renewal Date
  5. Complete the rest of the information and then select the Active box.

For more information see the HELP text on the Participants to Monitor page.

Automatic renewals for participants can be turned off using the Active Participants function.

Bill Dillhoefer   April 5, 2018  


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The following implementation services are available from Net Worth Strategies, Inc. and can be purchased online when the account is created at: https://app.stockopter.com/Signup/CreateNewAccount.aspx

  • 1-on-1 Assistance Creating an Initial Analysis: $100
  • Report Template Customization & Branding: $300
  • Admin User Training Webinar: $200
  • Standard User Training Webinar: $200
  • System Configuration (User Functionality, Participant Access, Monitoring Defaults & Password Reqs): $500
  • All of the Above Services: $1,000

Prices subject to change based on specific user requirements.

Contact Bill Dillhoefer (bdillhoefer@networthstrategies.com) at 541-383-3899 for more information.

Bill Dillhoefer   April 6, 2018  


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Yes, the attached StockOpter.com Service Level Agreement contains information about system availability, performance standards and the procedures for problem resolution. For more information contact stockopter@networthstrategies.com.

File Attachment(s):
  StockOpter.com SLA 9-6-13.pdf   (479kb)

Bill Dillhoefer   April 7, 2018  


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The system will automatically renew active participants/clients that have the Automatic Renewal box checked at approximately 8 PM (PST) on the renewal/expiration date. A client case token is deducted from the account balance at that time.

The StockOpter.com Main Contact User will receive an email 7 days in advance alerting them when participant cases are scheduled to renew.

To manage your renewals use the Active Participants function under the My Account menu after logging in to StockOpter.com.

Note: unless approved by NWSI, participant cases WILL NOT renew if the token balance is zero. The participant's Main User will be notified by email if this happens.

 

Bill Dillhoefer   April 8, 2018  


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Advisors: Known Issues

If you still use the old Internet Explorer browser, you may find that the Dashboard "sliders" and various "edit" or "delete" links are missing or that the drop down selectors aren't working. If this is happens don't panic it's just another Microsoft "issue" that can be dealt with.

The fix is simple, just change the browser mode to "Compatibility View" by using the "Tools" or "Page" drop-down and selecting "Compatibility View Settings". From this dialogue box you can add StockOpter.com to a list of websites that will be displayed using "Compatibility View".

This should correct the problems, but in case it doesn't try using Google Chrome or upgrading to Microsoft Edge.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Although StockOpter.com has been optimized to run best under Microsoft Edge, it appears to work well using the Safari browser from Apple. No add-ons are required to run the videos and the reports open automatically with Word when downloaded.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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StockOpter.com also works well using the current version of Google Chrome version. No add-ons are required to run the videos and the reports open automatically with Word when downloaded.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 22, 2016  


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Recipients: General Information

No, the "Recipient" version of StockOpter.com can only track and analyze stock and option positions for a single company.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 24, 2018  


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Your company's stock plan platform was designed to administer an equity compensation program.  It was NOT designed to provide guidance on how to get the most out of your company stock and options.  Although your company platform may enable you to exercise stock options and sell company stock, it WON'T give you guidance on when and why to diversify.

StockOpter.com produces an equity compensation diversification analysis that allows one to make timely, informed and profitable decisions.   The StockOpter analytics illustrate time value, leverage, forfeit value, concentration, goal attainment, value at risk (VaR) and risk/reward.  These concepts help establish a decision-making framework that can be used for the long term duration of your company holdings.

Your company can't provide you with advice on what to do with your grants and you shouldn't rely on sketchy "water-cooler" guidance.  For only $95/year StockOpter.com for recipients can prevent you from making costly errors.  To see for yourself sign up for the free 60 day trial.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 27, 2016  


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The major difference between the "Advisor" and the "Recipient" versions of StockOpter.com is the "Advisor" version is designed to be used with any number of stock compensation participants and the "Recipient" version is made to be used by the individual to analyze and manage their company stock and option positions.  The major functions (i.e. Data Entry, Dashboards, Report Creation and Monitoring) are nearly identical although there are slight differences with the user interface.

Bill Dillhoefer   June 24, 2016  


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