Archive | Research and Analysis

Tags: flexibility, jobs, mobility, professionals, travel, work Switzerland

Switzerland’s Workforce More Mobile

Posted on 23 August 2009 by Mr Bureau

According to recent studies of work habits in Switzerland by Zurich’s EPF, the Swiss have turned the page on the era of the long term employment close to home.

Employees are now not only changing jobs frequently but also seeking them or accepting them farther away from home, endorsing the notion that mobility and flexibility are factors in career advancement.

The study’s authors claim that current workplace demands, which have increased considerably with globalization, have made professional work in Switzerland more dependent on mobility.

Many recruitment agencies have noted that the attractiveness and enjoyability of a candidate rises considerably with willingness to travel.

RH consultancies note that the reasons most often appreciated by employees are the company culture and diversity of the job description; thus the reasons most often cited for leaving a job are absence of a good work environment, monotonous workload. Salary is usually secondary.

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Employee Commitment at Work – Switzerland

Posted on 04 June 2008 by ThomasP

Contrary to perception, many employees and executives are ready and willing to commit themselves more fully in their companies. A study from consultancy Towers Perrin, which sampled 86,000 employees in 18 countries and examined motivations showed several surprising results. Within the overall study, 1000 people were interviewed from Switzerland during the 2007-2008 period, coming from companies ranging from 250 to 10,000 employees across different sectors of the economy.

The first myth dispelled by the study was that the employee motivation is principally dependent on the attitudes of and the employee’s relationship to direct line management.

The study found rather that the general management culture and organizational factors were preponderantly important. When the general management of a company is sound and sets an example showing it is sincerely concerned with the well-being of employees, this has a very strong influence on employee commitment to work and Employment opportunities - jobs - in Lugano, Switzerland

to the company. The study stresses that this is accomplished through acts and not by empty speeches.

In Switzerland, a major expectation of employees and executives was found to be management receptivity to new ideas, followed by a perceived influence on the decision making process in one’s domain of activity. In Switzerland, the perception of management preoccupation with employee’s well-being came in eighth place, Employment opportunities in Lugano, Switzerlandbehind such factors as rapid management reaction and clear management commitment to long term goals, reputation for financial stability and ability of management to elicit enthusiasm from staff.

The study grouped staff into 4 categories, from most committed to least committed. Switzerland had the highest rate of very committed staff (23% against 21% global average for the study). Switzerland also registered the highest rate of committed staff (50% against 41% for the global average). For Human Resources professionals its these two upper categories of ‘very committed’ and ‘committed’ on which they have to concentrate their efforts to retain and reinforce loyalty. The two lower categories of ‘disengaged’ and ‘very disengaged’ are considered as already lost by the HR professionals behind the study. HR services are advised not to spend excessive time on these two categories as much effort will wasted for few returns.

The study measured employee loyalty to the company by asking respondents if they intended to leave their current employment and if they were actively seeking another job. Among workers in Switzerland, the loyalty rate was very high: 38% of the employees polled had no intention of leaving their company, a figure much higher than the 33% global average. 37% responded that they were not looking to leave their job but would take into consideration another offer, for example from a headhunter. 11% responded that they were seeking another job.

The study points up to Swiss corporate Human Resources professionals that roughly half of employees working in Switzerland fall into the critical category of potentially leaving, lured by a more interesting opportunity elsewhere. Company HR needs to concentrate its attention on this pool to stave off exacerbated problems due to the penury of qualified personnel in Switzerland.

In Switzerland, the factors that explain the level of company loyalty are: satisfaction with and understand of company management decisions, possibilities for career development, and a good working relationship with the different departments within the company.

Another myth exploded by the study is that executives and workers in Switzerland are reluctant to devote themselves more to the company and are primarily motivated by salary. The study shows rather employees are ready to invest themselves more fully in a company if they feel a return for this investment, and that the return does not have to be financial, but can be in the form of vocational training or career advancement.

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Cost of Swiss Professionals Increases – Swiss Salaries Rise

Posted on 19 February 2008 by ThomasP

The average hourly cost of labor working in Switzerland increased over the period 2004 – 2006.

Swiss labor costs remain among the highest in Europe, however the strengthening of the Euro has offset the competitive disadvantage of work in Switzerland.

The average hourly wage paid for salaried employees working in Switzerland over the period 2004 – 2006 was CHF 53.90, according to the Federal Office of Statistics (OFS) in Berne.

The OFS emphasized that the progression in labor costs resulted predominantly from the increase in salaries and bonuses paid by Swiss-based companies for higher qualified professionals working in Switzerland and also resulting from the reduction in the effective working hours. The statistic therefore reflects the increasing specialization in the Swiss economy.

However this generalization skirts around large variations in the Salaries increasing in Switzerland

different branches of the Swiss economy. Employees in the sectors of insurance and banking are those costing the most to their employers, with an average remuneration of CHF 80.80 per hour. They present as well the most marked progression in compensation of work in Switzerland, with a rise of more than 12% over the past 2 years. At the Salaries increasing in Switzerlandother end of the scale, employers in the hotel and restaurant industries paid an average hourly wage of CHF 33.20 to their employees, which represents a rise of only 2.9% over 2004 and probably does not even offset the cost of living increases over that period. For clerical workers working in Switzerland, retail stores offered on average an hourly wage of CHF 46.45, an increase of 3.85%.

Between the extremes, teachers were among the better compensated, with an average hourly wage of 66.55%, ahead of public sector administration (CHF 63.85 / + 3%) and those working in the energy industries (CHF 63.15 / 4.15%). The sectors with the highest costs also have the highest demands for well-
qualified professionals working in Switzerland – unsurprisingly the high value-added sectors. In the construction industry, the average hourly salary is CHF 47.60 (+2.9%) and in the manufacturing industry CHF 52.25 (+3.6%).

Overall, it’s the financial services and banking sector which is pushing up the statistics. And the employees from the public sector did not really receive better increases workers in construction, and even less than teachers working in Switzerland.

In Switzerland, the average salary is composed of 83% remuneration directly received, 15% contributions for social security retirement and insurances (such as unemployment), and 1.6% other costs such as continuing education.

In order to compare Switzerland to the rest of Europe, these charges have to be converted into Euros. The OFS calculated that in 2006, the average hourly salary came out to be Euro 33.80, thus ahead of Sweden (Euro 32.15), Luxembourg (Euro 32), and France (Euro 30.30). Thanks to the strong rise of the Euro, the discrepancy between the costs of working in Switzerland and the surrounding EU countries was substantially reduced. It would appear that with respect to cost levels in 2002, Switzerland actually presents a cost reduction of roughly 1% due to exchange rate fluctuations.

Recent studies have called into question the linearity of remuneration and employee fidelity and motivation, indicating that relative status at the workplace is more importantthan absolute compensation in the minds of many professionals working in Switzerland.

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Swiss Jobs in Industry

Posted on 13 October 2007 by info

PHILIP MORRIS is seeking to recruit a Food Technologist or Food Process Engineer for its R & D center in Neuchatel to work on the research and development of products that can reduce the risk of smoking. The position involves developing new treatments of tobacco. The position is to lead research programs in collaboration with external and internal research groups and assess new technologies to process tobacco and positively influence the composition of tobacco smoke. The candidate recruited for this job will search and recommend external partners, establish and guide fellow R & D programs with identified external entities, design and run experiments to assess quality of processed tobacco products, and perform in-depth evaluations and make comprehensive reports. The person sought is someone with a university degree in Food Technology, at least 3 years academic experience or industrial experience in various processes aimed at modifying tissue structure of plant materials and texture of food materials, e.g. paper refining, extrusion, expansion or drying. The successful candidate will be familiar with plant structural polymers, have experience in producing extracts from plant materials, and be fluent in English; spoken French and/or German would be an asset. Interested persons may apply via the PM online recruitment site at

ETHOS, a foundation created by Swiss pension funds to favor investment in sustainable development and ethical business practices, is seeking to recruit for their Geneva offices a Corporate Governance Analyst who will be responsible for analyzing the stockholders meetings, analyzing and evaluating companies as regards corporate governance, participating in dialogue with companies as regards governance, working on various studies in the domain of corporate governance. Ethos is seeking a candidate with a university degree, solid knowledge of corporate governance and interest in economics, good interpersonal and communication skills, strong writing skills, and mother tongue French or German with good knowledge of the other language; a knowledge of written and spoken English is also required.

Interested candidates are encouraged to apply send a c.v. and motivation letter to M. Dominique Biedermann, Director, ETHOS, Place Cornavin 2, Case Postale, 1211 Geneva 1, Switzerland. Their website is

NOVELIS, a leader in aluminum rolling products based in Sierre (the Valais) is seeking to recruit a Research Engineer to support the global Novelis plants by developing and applying process models to improve the efficiency and product quality of the rolling operations. The position requires coordination with other software developers and R&D engineers during the development phase of the models in an international, industrial environment.
The Research they are seeking to recruit has a university degree in Physics, applied mathematics or engineering and preferably PhD with an emphasis in process simulation. Several years of experience is also required as are a sound knowledge of C/C++/Fortran/VB programming skills. Familiarity with FE modeling techniques, ease communicating in English and hopefully other European languages –particularly French and German, which are the ambient national languages. Interested candidates should send their CV and certificates to Novelis Switzerland, Emmanuel Zaza, Resources Humaines, Route des Laminoirs 15, CH-3960 Sierre, Switzerland, or by email to : The telephone number is +41 27 457 6111.

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