The employee-employer relationship is characterised by close contact between the staff and the Corporate Executive Board.

Since 1996, Swiss Life has had a European Works Council (pursuant to EU Directives 94/45/EC and 2009/38/EC).


The ten-person “Europa Forum”, a committee comprising delegates from four countries, meets regularly with representatives of the Corporate Executive Board at ordinary and extraordinary meetings. It deals with transnational information and consultation on topics which affect all Swiss Life employees. The focal points for 2020 were the Covid-19 pandemic, the “Swiss Life 2021” Group-wide strategy, sustainability, diversity and inclusion, and the “Swiss Life Way of Working” initiative.


Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining are guaranteed by local legislation (EU Charter Art. 12, Swiss Federal Constitution Art. 23); they form the basis for inter-nal policies and guidelines. Collective bargaining agreements exist in the following coun-tries and units (GRI 102-41):

Swiss Life in Switzerland

Agreements signed

The members, chairwoman and vice-chairwoman of the staff committee elected at the most recent election assumed their duties for the 2020-2023 term of office as of 1 January 2020.

  • The agreement concerning simplified recording of working hours, which entered into force on 1 April 2016, was formally confirmed at the annual review and will be continued.
  • In 2020, the staff committee participated in pilot workshops on “Diversity & Inclusion”. Overall, the staff committee was involved in all the topics set forth in the regulations. An intensive dialogue took place between employee and employer representatives, particularly with regard to the current Covid-19 pandemic.
  • As part of the 2021 salary review, the staff committee will make a formal application to the Executive Board for a salary increase.
  • At the inaugural meeting in spring 2020, the committee (one person per country) and the representatives – through the countries in the European Works Council – were newly defined.
  • In 2020, the staff committee answered around 280 enquiries from employees.

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

Nine members; the chairwoman enjoys up to 20% work dispensation for work on the staff committee, the vice chairwoman up to 15% and the members up to 10%.

Swiss Life in France

Agreements signed

Elections to the staff council were held electronically in January 2019. A new business and social committee was established. It has four sub-committees: “Occupational health and safety”, “Business and strategy”, “Social affairs” and “Workplace learning”. Elections are held every four years. A specific training programme is available to enable the employee representatives to develop their competencies.

  • Three annual wage negotiations took place in 2019 with wage agreements
  • An extension of the working from home agreement
  • An agreement on the mandate of administrative employees
  • A one-year extension of participation and interest agreements relating to health
  • An agreement on teleworking

No further agreements were concluded in 2020.

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

  • 22 regular members of the Economic and Social Committee, each with 30 hours per month, including a secretary with 25 hours per month and an assistant secretary with 15 hours per month
  • A treasurer with 15 hours per month and an assistant treasurer with five hours per month
  • 14 trade union delegates, each with 24 hours per month
  • Four central delegates, each with 26 hours per month
  • Three mediators responsible for dealing with harassment/victimisation

Collective bargaining agreements

98% of employees are covered by a collective bargaining agreement.

 
Swiss Life Asset Managers in France

Agreements signed

The Adaptation Agreement (works agreement), which was signed unanimously following the merger, contains:

  • Amendment of working time regulations
  • Implementation of the working from home arrangements
  • Harmonisation of bonus, fringe benefit, profit sharing and employee savings plans, etc.
  • Employee referendum for the implementation of the agreement
  • Expansion of the Works Council

The following agreements have also been signed:

  • Adaptation agreement following the merger of 21 June 2019, followed by the employee referendum for implementation of the agreement
  • Agreement on additional Works Council elections on 3 July 2019
  • Pre-electoral agreement for the organisation of Works Council elections on 29 July 2019
  • Supplement to the profit sharing agreement of 28 June 2019
  • Supplement to the company savings plan in addition to the employer’s contribution of 16 April 2019

No new agreement has been concluded since 2019. Swiss Life Asset Managers France is about to conclude two new agreements by the end of the year:

  • On annual wage negotiations
  • On new savings plans (long-term, “plan d’épargne pour la retraite collectif PERCO”)

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

Prior to the merger of 1 April 2019 between SWISS LIFE REIM (France) and Swiss Life Asset Management (France), there were three representative union organisations (CFDT, CFE-CGC and CFTC) with a total of 14 Works Council members, nine for SWISS LIFE REIM (France) and five for Swiss Life Asset Management (France).
Following the merger on 1 April 2019, a union organisation (CFDT) was established with eleven members of the Works Council in accordance with the agreement on the additional Works Council elections in July 2019. No employee representative carries out his/her activity full-time.

Collective bargaining agreements

100% of employees are covered by a collective bargaining agreement.

Swiss Life in Germany

Agreements signed

The Works Council performs its duties in accordance with the local Works Constitution Act. To meet local requirements, various constructive works agreements have been concluded with management.

  • A works agreement on mobile working was concluded shortly before the Covid-19 pandemic, which proved to be a solid basis for the challenges of the first lockdown phase in spring 2020.
  • An agreement setting out comprehensive measures to support employees during the corona restrictions was concluded in good time. Among other things, this covered an extension of the working time corridors and a flexible handling of home schooling requirements). To this end, the Works Council launched a holiday fundraising campaign and successfully distributed more than 50 days of donated leave to colleagues in support of childcare or home care.
  • In cooperation with the HR department, in occupational health management, the focus has returned to resilience and mental stress at the workplace.
  • An agreement on an increase in base salaries in 2020 and 2021 for non-pay-scale employees was reached with the Executive Board in the spring.

 

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

  • The Central Works Council as the overarching body of all operations consists of five persons (two representatives of Works Council Internal Services, two representatives of Works Council Sales Force, one representative of the severely handicapped). The Central Works Council chair is also chair of the Works Council Internal Services, a member of the Business Committee and spokesperson for the European Works Council of Swiss Life Ltd.
  • The Works Council Internal Services (responsible for the German branch in Garching as well as Swiss Life Partner Service- und Finanzvermittlungs GmbH and SLPM Schweizer Leben PensionsManagement GmbH) is composed as follows:
  • Eleven members, of whom the Works Council chair with 100% work dispensation for Works Council activities.
  • The Works Council Sales Force is responsible for intermediary distribution at the branch office and comprises three people, none of whom has dispensation.

Collective bargaining agreements

47% of employees are covered by a collective bargaining agreement.

 
Swiss Life Asset Managers in Germany and Swiss Life Investment Management Deutschland Holding GmbH

Agreements signed

Interim agreement during the project phase for the introduction of the “Workday” personnel management system; Group works agreement on occupational pension provision.

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

The members of the Works Council representing CORPUS SIREO Real Estate GmbH and Swiss Life Invest GmbH established a Group Works Council (KBR) on 29 October 2019. It consists of four members of the Works Council (one part-time, three full-time); the chairwoman, who has a part-time role, is exempted from regular work. In connection with the establishment of Swiss Life Investment Management Deutschland Holding GmbH, the objective of the KBR is to define cross-company topics.
The Group Works Council has four members, who are appointed by the above Works Councils. One member of the Works Council at Corpus Sireo with 100% dispensation, is also a member of the European Works Council. All other members work without dispensation. The Group works agreements are relevant for all employees of Swiss Life Asset Managers in Germany in accordance with the particular agreement’s scope of application.

 
Swiss Life Asset Management GmbH and Swiss Life Invest GmbH

Agreements signed

  • Calculation of variable compensation (bonus) for 2019
  • Basic salary adjustment process for non-management, non-pay-scale employees as at 1 April 2019
  • Supplement to Annex 1 to the IT Framework Agreement

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

The Works Council of Swiss Life Asset Management GmbH and Swiss Life Invest GmbH consists of three members, all of whom work full-time (38 hours/week). All members work without dispensation. The Works Agreements apply to around 81% of all employees of these companies.

Collective bargaining agreements/Works agreements

26% of employees are covered by a collective bargaining agreement. Works agreements apply to 81% of the employees.

 
Corpus Sireo

Agreements signed

  • Regulation concerning working hours at Corpus Sireo
  • Arrangements concerning working time regulations from old contracts prior to 1 July 2017
  • Mobile working
  • Agreement on supplementary framework conditions for employment relationships at Corpus Sireo
  • Voluntary social security benefits – Spendit Card
  • Project time recording
  • Deployment and use of the “Competence Booster” training platform at Corpus Sireo
  • A company framework agreement on IT

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

The committee currently consists of five members (one part-time, four full-time). Of these, the part-time employee enjoys full work dispensation for Works Council activities and two of the other members are each entitled to 50% dispensation.

Works agreements

98% of employees are subject to a Works Agreement.

Swiss Life in Luxembourg

Agreements signed

Following the elections of March 2019, the newly elected staff committee took up its duties in April 2020.

  • The new staff committee is continuing to concentrate on its key role of facilitating the flow of information between staff and management in order to avoid potential conflicts.
  • Ensuring appropriate investment in the retraining of insurance workers and adapting skills to future workplace demands
  • In addition, one employee representative assumes responsibility for reviewing “equal opportunities” (including gender aspects) and one other person is responsible for the topic of “safety and wellbeing”.

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

Number of Works Council members broken down by full-time and part-time The number of employee representatives and the time required for their work are directly proportional to the number of employees. In the Global Solutions area in Luxembourg, employee representation consists of five ordinary representatives and five deputies. The employee representatives are entitled to devote 16 hours a week to exercising their mandate.
The Swiss Life Products (Luxembourg) S.A. team has reached the threshold of 15 employees and thus elected its own employee representation in 2019.
Luxembourg) S.A. and Swiss Life Products (Luxembourg) S.A. are subject to a new collective bargaining agreement for the insurance sector. The new contract, which was concluded between the social partners and the insurance sector ("Association des Comagnies d'Assurance"), entered into force on 1 January 2021 and is identical to the previous one.

Collective bargaining agreements

63% of employees are covered by a collective bargaining agreement.

 
Swiss Life Asset Managers in Luxembourg

Agreements signed

The staff committee of Swiss Life Asset Managers Luxembourg was newly elected in March 2019. Quarterly meetings are held with the Executive Board. No formal agreements were reached between the staff committee and the Executive Board in 2020.

Number of works council members, dispensation for committee work and area of responsibility

The staff committee of Swiss Life Asset Managers Luxembourg consists of two active delegates, two deputy delegates and one security delegate.  
All delegates work without dispensation.