Equal opportunities as an advantage – we believe in diversity

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Equal opportunities as an advantage – we believe in diversity

As a modern employer, at Zurich Switzerland we promote equal opportunities: We want to establish a work environment in which all employees can flourish, regardless of their gender, identity, generation and background.
At Zurich Switzerland, we aspire to be an employer with whom employees with their authentic personalities and very different backgrounds can feel comfortable and develop. "Diversity, eEquity, Inclusion & Belonging" are firmly rooted in our principles and, as our Employee Promise, form part of our strategy. Because we see the diversity of our employees as an opportunity and a competitive advantage.

Ensuring equity: framework conditions, culture and work environment

To us, "equity" is an aspect of central importance. This means not only equity between genders, but equal treatment of all identities. We ensure this with a threefold approach, establishing fair framework conditions, emphasizing a corporate culture marked by equity, and thus enabling a work environment that values all genders and identities. 

What does this mean in practice?

Fair framework conditions: equal work, equal pay

To us, equal pay for equal work is a matter of course: As a result, we were the first financial service provider in Switzerland to be awarded the EDGE "Move" label for equal opportunities in 2017 and 2019, and today we are LOGIB-certified. To us, fairness also means that everybody can benefit from our generous parental leave: mothers, fathers as well as same-sex couples.

Our discrimination-free culture: externally recognized

We regularly take part in the Diversity Benchmarking by the University of St.Gallen, which enables us to compare ourselves objectively with our competitors and the Swiss labor market. Since 2016, we have been a member of Advance, the largest Swiss business association for gender equality. Moreover, the LGBTQ+ organization Stonewall has repeatedly attested  our discrimination-free work environment. We also give our diverse employees a voice through our local Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). This includes the Women Innovation Network WIN, the LGBTQ+ network Zurich PrideZ and #NEXT Generation, the association of young talent.

Lifelong learning: valuing all groups of employees

Apart from specialists, we also welcome career shifters and give them an opportunity to develop successfully. We recruit and develop young professionals by means of various programs, and we promote employees aged 55 and above with our career trajectory model. We are convinced that through the diversity of perspectives, backgrounds and strengths, we are able to find the best solutions for our customers and business partners.

Career perspectives: also in part-time roles

We enable internal talent to steadily develop their careers, even on a part-time basis: As a matter of principle, we offer all jobs with a volume of 80 to 100%, and even management positions are possible on a part-time basis. 

Virtually everybody can reduce their work volume for family-related or other reasons, and our employees have the opportunity to try out part-time work, buy additional leave days and take sabbaticals. We offer families various benefits, such as discounted daycare placements, professional advice and a "buddy" system among the employees, all of which makes it easier for parents to return to work and allows them to exchange experiences and advice.

Flexible working conditions: hybrid and modern

At Zurich Switzerland, we have made use of FlexWork for many years: In coordination with their line managers and to the extent possible in their job, we enable all employees to decide flexibly when, where and how to work. As a matter of principle, working hours can be scheduled in a flexible way, and hybrid work is possible both in the office and outside. We contribute to this approach with a modern infrastructure, while a comprehensive wellbeing offering assists employees in handling their resources with care. Our aim is to ensure that all employees are able to harmonize the demands of their work and their private lives.

We promote integration: our partnerships

As one of Switzerland's largest employers, it is our sincere desire to live up to our social responsibility. We therefore offer various pathways for the integration and reintegration of people whose access to the labor market is more difficult, and we thus make a contribution to society while at the same time increasing the diversity in our company. 

For example, we work with the Social Security Institution (SVA) Zurich to offer people who have not been able to work for an extended period due to an accident or illness prospects for re-entry into the labor market. Through the Athletes Network, we offer former professional athletes a second career in the financial sector. And with the Powercoders, we help train refugees, transforming them into valuable employees in the IT industry. 

Our commitment to equal opportunities

As a responsible company, we provide the basic conditions for equity and promote equal treatment of our employees. Lately, this has also been symbolized by the sculpture "The new oath of the three Swiss (Der neue Schwur der drei Eidgenoss*innen)" by Marco Michel, which serves as a daily reminder at our headquarters in Zurich Oerlikon.

For an open-minded Switzerland: Advancine sculpture at Zurich Switzerland

How far along is Switzerland on the road to equal opportunities? In response to this question, 30 artists have designed larger-than-life figures, the "Advancines". In March 2023, these figures were set up for two weeks in the large hall of Zurich's main railway station as part of a campaign organized by Advance – Gender Equality in Business, the largest association of this type in Switzerland.

Zurich Switzerland sponsored the sculpture "The new oath of the three Swiss" by Marco Michel and now presents it at its headquarters in Zurich Oerlikon. With his work, the artist promotes an open-minded, tolerant Switzerland.

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