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Home » Your Guide To Salesforce’s ESPP: Everything You Need To Know

Your Guide To Salesforce’s ESPP: Everything You Need To Know

If you work at Salesforce, you may be eligible to enroll in the employee stock purchase plan (ESPP). To help you make the most of this opportunity, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to all the ins and outs of this program, from how it works to how you enroll.

If you’d like to learn more about how ESPPs work in general, be sure to read our blog about an overview of employee stock purchase plans.

Here’s a quick rundown of how Salesforce’s ESPP works.

  • You can buy Salesforce stock at a 15% discount.
  • You can enroll twice a year:
    • Nov 30th
    • May 31st
  • You can contribute up to 15% of your salary with a maximum of $21,250 per year.

Should You Participate In Salesforce’s ESPP?

When you enroll in Salesforce’s ESPP, you have the opportunity to purchase shares of your company stock at a discounted price through automatic payroll deductions.

The benefits of participating in an ESPP are clear – you can make gains and build wealth. In fact, Salesforce employees can gain $3,750 or even more annually through their ESPP.

Salesforce’s ESPP Discount

Salesforce offers employees an opportunity to buy Salesforce stock at a 15% discount.

Salesforce’s ESPP Enrollment Periods

You can enroll in Salesforce’s ESPP twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall. You can enroll by the following dates:

  • Nov 30th
  • May 31st

Salesforce’s ESPP Contribution Limits

The first thing you need to do is decide how much you want to contribute. You can contribute up to 15% of your salary, with a limit of $21,250 per year.

Salesforce’s ESPP Offering Period

The offering period is the time that employees can purchase the stock. Salesforce’s employee stock purchase plan (ESPP) has two 6-month offering periods every year. 

When you’re participating in Salesforce’s ESPP, you set aside money from each paycheck from the beginning of a purchase period through the end. At the end of this purchase period, the money that has been set aside is used to purchase company stock at a discount.

If you are interested in Salesforce’s ESPP, here are some key dates to keep in mind. 

The offering periods are 

  • Dec 15th – Jun 14th
  • Jun 15th – Dec 14th

The stock purchase dates are the last trading day before the end of each period.

Salesforce’s ESPP Lookback

Salesforce’s ESPP has a lookback provision for calculating the purchase price. A lookback provision is a beneficial feature that will base the purchase price for calculating the discount on the stock price either at the beginning of the offering period or at the end of the purchase period, whichever is lower.

So if Salesforce’s share price increases during the offering period, you pay 85% of Salesforce’s share price on the offering date. In this scenario, the discount from the market price will exceed 15%.

Let’s look at an example:

  • Share price on Dec 15 =$100
  • Share price on Jun 14 = $115
  • Purchase price = $85 
  • Gain / share = $30

To explain – the lookback feature would pick the lower of the two prices, which is $100, and then apply the discount of 15%.

This means you would buy shares at $85 ($100 – the 15% discount), However, they would be worth $115. In other words, you would earn $30 for every $85 you put into your ESPP.

In this scenario, someone who contributed $5,500 over just 6 months would receive shares valued at $7,441 …a gain of $1,941 in just 6 months.

Selling Your ESPP Shares

Once Salesforce purchases the shares on your behalf, they will be deposited into your brokerage account. From there, you can do what you want with them…sell immediately (as long as it’s during the open trading windows), hold for a short time, hold for an extended time, etc.

How does Benny help me make the most of Salesforce’s ESPP?

Benny makes it easy to participate in Salesforce’s employee stock purchase plan by giving you cash to match your ESPP paycheck deduction so you can get the benefits of your ESPP without impacting your take-home pay.

For example, if you’re contributing $350 per paycheck to Salesforce’s ESPP, Benny will deposit $350 in your bank account before each paycheck’s pay date.

Use our ESPP calculator to see how much you can earn with Salesforce’s ESPP.