Managers are also granted the discretion to award spot bonuses to their direct reports for performance above and beyond the call of duty. During NetApp's last fiscal year, spot bonuses rose 22% to $1.3 million.
The company's Patent Award Program recognizes each employee patent recipient with a bonus of $5,000 to $15,000 depending on the number of named inventors. 470 employees received awards in 2011 totaling $850,054. Multiple patent recipients receive 100 shares of stock for every three original patents, along with a commemorative trophy.
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