A flexible work environment

We have designed our HR policy to meet the bank’s values, advocating close employee relations, individual and collective accountability, and commitment from all employees.

A range of actions recently introduced support this culture: flexible work arrangements introduced for all employees depending on their place of residence (up to two remote work days per week for Swiss residents, termination of set working hours, option of a 4.5-day working week, etc.), changes to our performance management system designed for employees and their development, and also the implementation of a continuous feedback tool to strengthen dialogue and close relations with management.

We firmly believe that, by giving our employees more responsibility and trust, the human performance of our organisation will improve.

The pandemic has undeniably disrupted the way we live and work. The bank was able to adapt very quickly at first on a technical level (the relocation of our headquarters in 2019 considerably helped us all).

All of our employees were given laptops, and phone bridge and videoconferencing systems were created and rapidly put into use.

That represented a huge technological challenge, but we overcame it. It was essential for us to stay in contact with our staff. Various initiatives were launched, such as the “Standing Together” group on our corporate social network, and virtual get-togethers for coffee or happy hour drinks, etc.

The second challenge involved safety and security. That of course meant ensuring the security of our remote work computer system, but more importantly making sure our colleagues remained safe: physical distancing measures, sanitiser gel, masks, plexiglass barriers, etc. Our General Resources Department took efficient action in implementing these measures.

Furthermore, our commercial staff showed their continuous engagement, coming into branches every day with a smile and the drive to serve our customers.

The third challenge was managerial. How do you manage your team members when you can’t see them, and they’re no longer next to you? This change takes more time and requires adjustments to the management relationship.

In March 2020, overnight most of our employees found themselves at home full time. The situation undoubtedly accelerated this new managerial culture, which had to shift from control to trust.

We felt it was important to introduce an efficient work flexibility system that would go far beyond the simple issue of remote working. We wanted all of our businesses to be able to adapt their work hours as much as possible to achieve a better performance and a better work-life balance.