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Employment law in Switzerland
General terms and conditions of employment which exceed the minimum standard defined by the Code of Obligations govern the employment law provisions applicable to Swisscom management staff in Switzerland.
Employee representation and union relations
Swisscom is committed to fostering constructive dialogue with its social partners (the syndicom union and the transfair staff association) as well as the employee associations (employee representatives). The collective employment agreement (CEA) and the social plan constitute fair and consensual solutions. In the event of significant operational changes, Swisscom involves the social partners and employee associations at an early stage. The CEA grants the social partners and the employee associations rights of co-determination in various areas. In general and free elections in autumn 2013, Swisscom employees elected the new members of the employee associations charged with exercising these rights. Two employee representatives from the unions also sit on the Board of Directors of Swisscom Ltd.
Collective employment agreement (CEA)
In November 2015, Swisscom negotiated the necessary CEA with the social partners on the basis of the revised Ordinance 1 to the Swiss Labour Law. This agreement provides for a waiver of time registration and was implemented on 1 January 2016, the date on which the amended ordinance took effect.
Combining work with the care of relatives at home presents a major challenge to those affected. Swisscom provides special support for employees who care for a relative or closely related individual in addition to their work duties. Two new flexible working-hour models named “Work & Care” have been added to the existing models to promote work-life balance, particularly where an employee is caring for a relative.
Swisscom also operates special employment schemes (such as phased partial retirement or temporary placements in similar areas of expertise) in line with its commitment to providing fair solutions for older employees affected by changes in skill set requirements or redundancy.
Competitive pay packages help to attract and retain highly skilled and motivated specialists and managerial staff. Swisscom’s salary system comprises a basic salary, a variable performance-related component and bonuses. The basic salary is determined based on function, individual performance and the job market. The performance-related salary component is contingent on business performance as well as individual performance in the case of executive functions. Business performance is measured based on achievement of the Swisscom Group’s overarching targets and the targets of the respective business segment or division. The targets primarily relate to key financial indicators and customer loyalty. Individual performance is measured according to the achievement of results- and conduct-related goals. Details on remuneration paid to members of the Group Executive Board are provided in the Remuneration Report.See report
There is no legally defined minimum wage in Switzerland. Instead, this is negotiated by the social partners in the context of collective employment agreements. The current CEA provides for a minimum salary of CHF 52,000, or CHF 50,000 in the case of the cablex CEA. Swisscom’s operations are spread throughout Switzerland, and when it comes to determining salaries there is very little difference between regions. A study of starting salaries for the youngest employees (up to age 21) found that the average basic annual salary in the function levels used for most job starters in this category was CHF 58,000 or CHF 56,500 at cablex; in other words, 12% and 13% respectively above the minimum salary defined by the relevant CEA.
In February 2016, Swisscom and its social partners signed a two-year pay round agreement for 2016 and 2017. During the reporting year, Swisscom increased salaries in Switzerland by 0.4% of the total salary. Salary adjustments were made based on individual employee performance and specifically for employees with salaries that needed to be increased in line with the market. Management staff were only awarded salary increases in individual cases.
Swisscom also uses the federal government’s equal pay tool (Logib) to conduct periodic reviews of its salary structures to ascertain whether disparities exist between men’s and women’s pay. Previous reviews have revealed only minor pay discrepancies, well under the tolerance threshold of 5%.