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Annual Report
Year in review
2027 Strategy
Financial Report
Management Report
Financial statements Swiss GAAP FER­
Income statement
Balance sheet
Cash flow statement
Statement of changes in equity
Independent Auditor's Report
Statutory financial statements
Income statement
Balance sheet
Cash flow statement
Proposed appropriation of retained earnings
Statutory Auditor's Report
Corporate Governance
Sustainability Report
Sustainability at Swissgrid
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The material topics for Swissgrid in relation to «People» are «Occupational health and safety», «Attracting, retaining and developing skilled workers» and «Diversity and inclusion». As the operator of a critical infrastructure, Swissgrid insists on a high level safety and reliability, and consequently on the occupational health and safety of its employees. Furthermore, the company is dependent on highly qualified, diverse and motivated employees in order to develop into an innovative, highly digitalised and sustainable company.

Occupational health and safety

Vision and goals

Safety is a top priority for Swissgrid in all its activities. Consequently, it is managed within the company via an integral safety policy. This defines the objectives and framework for action so that safety measures are implemented in a consistent and coordinated way. The integral approach comprises seven thematic and organisational units, referred to as security domains (see chapter «Mission»): operational security, physical security, information security, integral risk management, crisis management and business continuity management, as well as environmental protection, health and safety. The aim of this last unit is to ensure the safety and health of employees, contractors, visitors and residents. In the area of health and safety, Swissgrid has set itself the key objective of reducing the number of occupational accidents with absences of more than five days to zero. This objective was achieved in 2023, as in 2022.

Swissgrid is obliged to comply with statutory and industry-standard provisions1. In specific areas, these provisions are supplemented with additional corporate standards. The following principles apply at Swissgrid when it comes to occupational health and safety:

  • Regardless of the activity, the risk must be minimised as effectively as possible. Safety-conscious behaviour is therefore a basic requirement for employees. The high standard is maintained and continually improved by means of ongoing training.
  • Occupational health and safety in the workplace is an important management task. By promoting the health, quality and safety awareness of the employees in the workplace, the line managers fulfil an important role model function and line responsibility.
  • Swissgrid lays down occupational health and safety objectives in writing. Occupational safety inspections are carried out regularly to ensure the success of occupational health and safety measures and the fulfilment of legal requirements.
  • When planning and introducing new procedures, Swissgrid is guided by the latest, advanced state of the art.
  • Swissgrid structures workplace conditions in accordance with recognised health and safety principles. Special attention is paid to prevention and precaution.

Management approach

As the national grid company, Swissgrid is one of Switzerland’s critical infrastructure operators according to the Federal Office for Civil Protection and strives to implement a correspondingly high level of security. That is why Swissgrid has made Safety & Security another priority of its Strategy 2027 (see chapter «2027 Strategy»). Swissgrid’s aims to guarantee the safety of people, systems and the environment at all times.

The Executive Board delegates the management and development of integral safety management to the Chief Safety & Security Officer (CSO) and the line-independent Integral Safety Committee (ISG), which comprises representatives of the seven safety domains (see chapter «Mission»). The CSO heads the Integral Safety Committee and reports to the Executive Board on a regular basis. The Executive Board determines the framework for occupational health and safety at Swissgrid and is responsible for making sure that all employees comply with safety standards and relevant laws and regulations. All employees have a duty and obligation to apply these principles.
1Federal Act on Work in Industry, Trade and Commerce (ArG), Ordinances 1 – 5 to the Labour Act (ArGV 1 – 5), Federal Act on Accident Insurance (AIA), Ordinance on the Prevention of Accidents and Occupational Diseases (OPA), Electricity Act (EleG), Ordinance on High Voltage Systems (StV), Ordinance on the Safety and Health Protection of Workers during Construction Work (BauAV), ESTI Directive 245: Safe working on high-voltage power lines, ESTI Directive 407: Working on or in the vicinity of electrical systems.

The HSE management system

Swissgrid addresses the topics of occupational health and safety and environmental protection as part of an integrated health, safety and environment management system (HSE management system) certified in accordance with ISO 45001:2018 and ISO 14001:2015. The HSE management system applies to the entirety of Swissgrid. In particular, all business areas, bases and plants are part of the HSE management system. Service providers are obliged by the Code of Conduct for Suppliers and by contractual provisions to ensure the occupational health and safety of their employees and of persons working on their behalf. Compliance is verified by Swissgrid in the course of inspections.

Covered by the audited and certified HSE management system202320222021
Total Swissgrid employees853736659
Proportion of internal employees covered by the ISO-certified/audited HSE management system100%100 %100 %
Total external employees1709643465
Proportion of external employees covered by the ISO-certified/audited HSE management system100%100 %100 %
Total internal and external employees1,5621,3791,124
Proportion of external and internal employees covered by the ISO-certified/audited HSE management system100%100 %100 %

1 External employees are not directly employed by Swissgrid, but have an employment relationship with a staff leasing company or service provider. The external employees listed in this table usually carry out work at Swissgrid’s office locations and are therefore recorded individually. External employees of suppliers who work on building construction or civil engineering projects for Swissgrid are not included, for example.

The following topics are covered by the HSE management system:

  • Tasks and duties or the allocation of competences and responsibilities in the field of occupational safety, health and environmental protection;
  • HSE targets for the continuous reduction of accidents, illnesses and environmental impacts, as well as measures or environmental programmes to achieve the targets;
  • Behaviours and procedures to ensure occupational safety, health protection and operational environmental protection, as well as conformity with the relevant legislation.

The HSE management system follows the PDCA management model («plan-do-check-act»). This management model is based on continuous improvement of HSE performance. The following diagram gives an overview of Swissgrid’s HSE management system model:

Aim and implementation of the HSE management system
The aim of Swissgrid’s HSE management system is to ensure continuous improvement and to promote the organisation’s understanding of activities relevant to safety and the environment using a systematic approach, as well as complying with the legal requirements for occupational safety, health and environmental protection.

Proposals for possible improvement measures are derived from hazard assessments, recorded accidents and near misses, environmental relevance analysis and the defined HSE targets. These measures are planned and implemented by Swissgrid’s Safety and Environmental Protection Officers in collaboration with the managers and employees concerned. Swissgrid’s operational business areas are responsible for implementing the measures.

The measures for achieving the HSE targets are set out in the operational development of the HSE security domain and, in particular, in the Safety Road Map, which is updated annually. Target achievement is continuously evaluated and reported via a key figure cockpit. The implementation of the HSE programme is monitored by the Head of Health & Safety or the Safety and Environmental Protection Officers.

Safety and environmentally relevant key figures for monitoring are defined in a corresponding directive. The accident statistics are integrated into the key figure cockpit and are presented once a year to employees and to the Executive Board in the annual HSE management review. Relevant key figures are summarised in the «Overview of key figures in the area of occupational health and safety».

Recurring certification
Swissgrid’s HSE management system is audited and certified by an accredited external auditor on the basis of ISO standards 14001:2015 and 45001:2018. An audit for recertification of the HSE management system takes place every three years. In the two years in between, a surveillance audit is carried out by the external auditor. In 2023, the Swiss Safety Center confirmed Swissgrid’s integrated HSE management system as suitable, appropriate and effective, and thus successfully recertified it. The result shows further progress compared to the previous year. Particular emphasis was placed on the «Safety First» philosophy and the continuous development of the safety culture throughout the company.

Risks and hazards

There is considerable potential for serious personal injury, environmental damage and damage to property in Swissgrid’s area of activity. Swissgrid has therefore categorised the risks relating to personal safety as «high» to «very high» as part of its company-wide risk management. Swissgrid proactively identifies the relevant risks and hazards, assesses them and eliminates them or at least minimises them to an acceptable residual risk.

Swissgrid is aware of its responsibility as an employer and ensures the occupational safety and health protection of its employees in accordance with the Accident Insurance Act (AIA) and the Labour Act (ArG). In order to ensure that measures for the protection of its employees are as effective as possible, Swissgrid defines measures according to the STOP principle. The STOP principle describes the hierarchy of the effectiveness of measures from S (substitution) via T (technical measures) and O (organisational measures) through to P (person-related measures). Swissgrid also raises awareness among its employees and service providers about the application of the STOP principle: stop, think and assess the situation before you act. In this way, Swissgrid wants to ensure that all employees and service providers stop work if they have any safety concerns.

Risk assessment
Various risk assessments are carried out at Swissgrid. Firstly, the basic hazards and general activities at Swissgrid are systematically analysed, assessed and documented in the activity-related risk assessment based on the SUVA hazard portfolio (SUVA 66105). Furthermore, the company checks whether recognised rules are available for the hazards. If this is not the case, the rules must be formulated or, where the hazard potential is high, a risk assessment (SUVA 66099) must be carried out. Standardised measures are derived from the activity-related risk assessment and are valid throughout Swissgrid.

The activity-related risk assessment is regularly reviewed and updated if necessary. However, a review and update may also be necessary due to identified deviations, after an accident or near-miss event, or after a change in the law.

As well as conducting activity-related risk assessments, Swissgrid also performs project-specific, utilisation-related, order-related and system-specific risk assessments.

The safety specialists from the Health & Safety team are responsible for drawing up templates for risk assessments and for training employees. As coaches, they ensure that methodological expertise is available in the relevant line and provide technical support. If necessary, specialised external experts in the fields of occupational medicine, occupational hygiene and safety engineering are called in.

Incident analyses
In addition to hazard analyses, Swissgrid carries out incident analyses to examine events that had or could have had a significant negative impact on the safety of people and/or grid operations. The aim of these analyses is to identify the main factors that led to the event. They take into account technical, organisational and human aspects as well as environmental conditions at the time of the incident.

The findings form the basis for identifying risks that could increase the likelihood of new incidents or jeopardise Swissgrid’s objectives. The extent of these risks is also determined by the responsible departments («risk treatment strategy»). Event analyses can contribute to the safe operation of the transmission system and help to avoid future incidents outside Swissgrid’s risk tolerance levels. They also make it possible to continuously improve grid, system and market operations with regard to the objectives set for operational safety and health and safety.

Occupational accidents involving Swissgrid’s own employees whose work has no influence on grid operations are investigated by the Health & Safety team, which works with the operational business areas to define measures to prevent the same or similar incidents from happening again and to put in place suitable communication measures. Occupational accidents involving service providers are investigated by their employers or by Swissgrid’s Health & Safety team, depending on their severity. At least one analysis is required for each accident in order to examine the causes and the measures defined.

Potential hazards
Swissgrid has identified the following five potential hazards with a risk of serious injury. In 2023, one occupational accident was caused in one of the identified hazard areas. The accident, which occurred while a specialist company was carrying out forestry work, fortunately did not result in any serious health problems for the persons involved. An overview of the type and consequences of occupational accidents in 2023 can be found in the «Overview of key figures in the area of occupational health and safety». 

Hazard potentialAccidents in the reporting period1Measures
Work near live high-voltage systemsNone• Implementation of the legal requirements relating to plant equipment and employee training.
• All work is planned and instructed by means of a written work order.
• Restrictive access.
• Regular announced and unannounced inspections at the construction and work sites.
Working at heightNonePromotion of training for authorised trainers in accordance with Directive No. 245 of the Federal Inspectorate for Heavy Current Installations (ESTI).
• All work is planned and instructed by means of a written work order.
• Regular announced and unannounced inspections at the construction and work sites.
Forestry work1• Use of specialised and experienced contractors.
• In-house forestry specialists outsource work to specialised forestry companies and regularly instruct and monitor the forestry work carried out.
• Regular announced and unannounced inspections at the construction and work sites.
Work with helicoptersNone• All work is planned and instructed by means of a written work order.
• Restrictive use of helicopters, testing of alternative, lower-risk options.
• Regular announced and unannounced inspections at the construction and work sites.
Handling hazardous substances (insulating oils, gases, cleaning agents and coolants)None• Implementation of the legal requirements relating to plant equipment and employee training.
• Regular announced and unannounced inspections at the construction and work sites.

1 The data includes employees of Swissgrid and of all service providers, including those who carry out work for Swissgrid on construction sites and outside office locations.

HSE inspections
Swissgrid’s regular HSE inspections are a key part of hazard and incident assessment, serve to mitigate risks, and are an important tool for fulfilling duty of care and compliance. In 2023, a total of 357 HSE inspections were carried out by project employees and the Health & Safety team. In 22 cases, the inspectors found situations that were classified as a medium safety risk, and in eight cases as a high safety risk. In all these cases, measures were agreed upon, documented and implemented to reduce the safety risk to an acceptable level.

2023 2022 2021
Number of HSE inspections carried out 357 368 239
Number of HSE inspections with medium risk 22 36 15
Percentage of HSE inspections with medium risk 6.2% 9.8% 6.3%
Number of HSE inspections with high risk 8 1 6
Percentage of HSE inspections with high risk 2.2% 0.3% 2.5%

Swissgrid attaches great importance to continuously strengthening its safety culture. That is why the company introduced the Safety Culture Ladder method in 2020. It was successfully certified at level 3 in 2022. During the 2023 recertification, Swissgrid was shown to have developed its safety culture by implementing various measures. The introduction of the mandatory «Safety & Security Days» series of events for employees and the motivation to say «STOP» in the event of doubt or danger were seen as particularly positive. In addition, the systematic consideration of human and organisational influences in incident analyses was perceived as very positive. The team of auditors sees potential for improvement in the culture of dialogue in particular, as open and honest communication forms the basis for a good safety culture. Since the beginning of 2022, Swissgrid has required service providers who carry out activities where occupational safety plays a central role to introduce the Safety Culture Ladder. This requirement is laid down in the relevant contracts. Swissgrid has therefore produced a «Safety Culture Ladder» guide for service providers.

  • Onboarding of new employees: All employees receive introductory training on health and safety when they join the company. This provides information on roles and responsibilities in the area of occupational safety, ergonomics in the workplace, Swissgrid’s emergency organisation, important environmental protection requirements and insurance basics. Swissgrid’s onboarding programme also includes topics such as personal protective equipment, information security, business continuity management, enterprise risk management and crisis management.
  • Safety Security Days: The mandatory «Safety & Security Days» introduced in 2022 were held for the second time in 2023. The aim of this year’s event was to raise awareness of safety among all employees in the areas of safety culture, cybersecurity, use of electricity and first aid. Employees learnt about these topics and deepened their knowledge through theoretical lessons and practical exercises. In the area of targeted cultural development, employees were encouraged to communicate on sensitive topics openly and without fear of negative consequences.
  • Specific training courses: Employees of the Grid Infrastructure business area who intend to become electrical experts complete a comprehensive training programme with nine training modules. In addition to basic knowledge about health and safety, the programme mainly focuses on electrical safety. The aim is for these experts to be able to manage risks in extra-high-voltage installations. In addition, selected employees also receive one-day training on safety inspections. This training course explains the aim of internal inspections, the duties and powers of inspectors, personal conduct during inspections and the key rules of SUVA.

The «Safety culture in practice» course was launched for the Grid Infrastructure business area in order to promote safety in everyday working life, to strengthen a sense of responsibility and to develop safety-oriented management behaviour. All employees with line and project responsibilities, as well as employees who manage service providers, took part. Topics included the various safety aspects that apply in the course of a project and the need for coordination between all parties, as well as the application of the STOP principle.

Occupational safety and health protection affect the most fundamental interests of employees: their health and physical integrity. Swissgrid employees are therefore entitled by law to receive information and to have a say in all matters relating to health and safety (Art. 6 of the Labour Act and Art. 6a of the Ordinance on the Prevention of Accidents and Occupational Diseases). At Swissgrid, the right to have a say is effected through staff representation. When it comes to their health and safety, Swissgrid employees are allowed to say «STOP». Employees and line managers are made aware of this right at various briefing events. Swissgrid also grants this right to all service providers working on behalf of the company. People who say STOP and report the corresponding risk are protected by Swissgrid’s Whistleblowing Policy.

The «RiskTalk» app is a tool for reporting incidents, observations and ideas of any kind in connection with risks and hazards. The aim is to recognise potential hazards at an early stage and to prevent accidents. Every message is processed and answered. Those responsible for the «RiskTalk» app ensure that ideas are scrutinised and implemented if they are found to be suitable. A «RiskTalk» report can be made either by employees or by service providers. Whistleblowers are protected by Swissgrid’s Whistleblowing Policy. In 2023, 118 reports were submitted via the «RiskTalk» app.

  • Behaviour near lines: The transmission system partly crosses cultivated land or passes close to populated areas. Swissgrid is therefore very keen to protect not only its own employees and the employees of its service providers, but also the general public. For example, Swissgrid provides comprehensive information on its website about the safety regulations that need to be observed during planning activities and work, as well as any sports and leisure activities, that are undertaken near lines.
  • Actions in the event of an emergency: Swissgrid has compiled a list of regulations and standards for the protection of people and the environment when working on and in the vicinity of its installations. This list is published in a manual available to the public. It includes a description of responsibilities and correct behaviour in the event of an emergency. Visitors are also provided with an information sheet, while employees can access information on the intranet. They also receive annual training on the correct way to behave in the event of an evacuation. If a hazardous situation arises, all employees of Swissgrid and of service providers are obliged to interrupt their work and immediately inform their superiors and the safety officers.
  • First aid at Swissgrid: Trained first responders and evacuation assistants work at all Swissgrid sites. Currently, 66 Swissgrid employees are trained as first aiders. This corresponds to 8% of all employees. Repeat courses are organised every two years. In addition, Swissgrid teaches all employees basic first aid and minimum firefighting skills at the «Safety & Security Days».

  • Completion of health checks: Swissgrid recognises its responsibility for the health of its employees and fulfils its legal mandate. Swissgrid’s night and shift workers undergo a compulsory annual health check by an independent body. In addition, those employees who have to climb masts as part of their role also receive a health check. An annual stress test is conducted for employees in the roles mentioned as well as for other employees if required.
  • Insurance for occupational and non-occupational accidents: All permanent Swissgrid employees are covered by accident insurance in accordance with the Accident Insurance Act (AIA) and Swissgrid’s supplementary accident insurance. These insurance policies include the following benefits to cover the risks of occupational accident and occupational illness: medical costs in a private ward during hospitalisation, daily allowance, disability benefits and costs for services such as rescue, transport and recovery. All employees also have mandatory insurance for leisure-time accidents (non-occupational accidents), including accidents during the commute to and from work (if they work at Swissgrid for at least eight hours per week). Accidents during leisure time are excluded for employees who work fewer than eight hours per week. Accidents suffered by these employees on the way to and from work are covered by occupational accident insurance.
  • Further measures for health protection: Swissgrid covers the costs of the tick vaccination and the annual flu vaccination for its employees if these vaccinations are carried out by recognised health authorities. In addition, Swissgrid ensures that employees are provided with an ergonomic workplace. Various SUVA information sheets and an explanatory video on this subject are available to employees. In addition, Swissgrid employees benefit from various discounts to promote their health, including fresh seasonal fruit provided free of charge every day and discounted fitness offers, for example.

Overview of key figures in the area of occupational health and safety

Occupational accidents: in the 2023 reporting year, there were no occupational accidents involving Swissgrid employees resulting in death, absence from work or health impairments. However, there were four occupational accidents without absence from work.

In the same period, five occupational accidents resulting in absence from work and minor health impairments were registered among employees who were working at Swissgrid construction sites and workplaces on behalf of a service provider.

Occupational accidents – Swissgrid employees1 2023 2022 2021
Number of hours worked1 1,512,785 1,231,256 1,134,097
Number of occupational accidents 4 2 5
Deaths due to occupational accidents 0 0 0
Number of occupational accidents resulting in absence from work and serious health impairments2 0 0 0
Number of occupational accidents resulting in absence from work and minor health impairments3 0 0 1
Number of occupational accidents without absence from work 4 2 4
Occupational accidents per 200,000 hours worked (TRIF) 0.53 0.32 0.88
Occupational accident fatality rate4 0 0 0
Rate of occupational accidents resulting in absence from work and serious health impairments4 0 0 0
Rate of occupational accidents resulting in absence from work and minor health impairments4 0 0 0.18
Rate of occupational accidents without absence from work4 0.53 0.32 0.71

1 Data shown for 853 Swissgrid employees, i.e. 100%.
2 No recovery within six months or permanent impairment.
3 Recovery within six months.
4 The rate is calculated per 200,000 working hours.

Occupational accidents – service providers1 2023 2022 2021
Number of occupational accidents 5 17 4
Deaths due to occupational accidents 0 0 0
Number of occupational accidents resulting in absence from work and serious health impairments2 0 2 0
Number of occupational accidents resulting in absence from work and minor health impairments3 5 15 4
Number of occupational accidents without absence from work 0 0 0

1 Data includes all companies contacted by Swissgrid as well as accidents that occurred during work at Swissgrid construction sites and workplaces. Data on the number of employees and their hours worked for Swissgrid is not yet recorded (planned for 2024/ 2025).
2 No recovery within six months or permanent impairment.
3 Recovery within six months.

Cause of occupational accidents: the most common cause of the nine occupational accidents is «cuts or pricks» (44%), followed by «colliding with objects» (22%).

Cause of accidents (employees and service providers) 2023 2022 2021
Number % Number % Number %
Falls 1 11% 1 5%  2 22%
Overexertion 0 0% 1 5%  0 0%
Tripping 0 0% 2 11%  2 22%
Colliding with objects 2 22% 4 21%  1 11%
Falling objects 1 11% 2 11%  1 11%
Becoming trapped 0 0% 3 16%  1 11%
Flying parts 0 0% 2 11%  0 0%
Stepping on or into something 1 11% 3 16%  0 0%
Being bumped into 0 0% 1 5%  0 0%
Hot parts and fabrics 0 0% 0 0%  1 11%
Injuries caused by animals 0 0% 0 0%  1 11%
Cuts or pricks 4 44% 0 0%  0 0%
Others 0 0% 0 0%  0 0%
Total 9 19 9

Work-related illnesses: in the last three years (2021–2023), there have been no known work-related illnesses among the employees of Swissgrid or of service providers due to the performance of work for Swissgrid.

Work-related illnesses 2023 2022 2021
Number of deaths due to work-related illnesses of employees 0 0 0
Number of documentable work-related illnesses of employees 0 0 0
Number of deaths due to work-related illnesses of service providers 0 0 0
Number of documentable work-related illnesses of service providers 0 0 0

Attracting, retaining and developing skilled workers

Vision and goals

The decarbonisation of the electricity system and rapidly changing regulatory requirements are increasing the dynamics of the environment in which Swissgrid operates. In order to be able to address these new and constantly changing requirements, Swissgrid set itself the goal of accelerating its development into an innovative, highly digitalised company in its Strategy 2027 (see chapter «2027 Strategy»). Consequently, Strategy 2027 summarises various measures to develop the relevant skills within the company as part of the «Operational Excellence» priority. Gaps in skills are closed by programmes that are tailored to individual needs. This increases Swissgrid’s attractiveness as an employer, allows it to recruit the talent it needs, and strengthens employees’ level of identification with the company. The following guiding principles promote the achievement of objectives:

  • Employee loyalty is achieved not least through a good corporate culture. The aim is to promote cooperation, networking and mutual trust.
  • Swissgrid has modern working conditions and is constantly developing them, because motivation and health have a positive effect on individual performance. For this reason, the company promotes a working atmosphere in which all employees feel comfortable and can develop their skills. Swissgrid encourages its employees to progress, make decisions, take responsibility, and to develop and implement their own innovative ideas.

Management approach

Swissgrid is dependent on highly qualified employees. The company can only fulfil its complex mission if it has a well-trained and motivated workforce. It can also be assumed that humans will become even more important in the future, despite the increased use of machine intelligence in the world of work. Swissgrid is implementing three comprehensive packages of measures to achieve the goals defined in Strategy 2027:

  • Employer of Choice: In order to retain employees and attract new recruits, Swissgrid wants to continue to establish itself as an attractive employer on the labour market and meet the expectations of employees in the areas that are important to them. Swissgrid’s internal development prospects are identified by means of career planning for senior and specialist managers, and measures are implemented via succession planning.
  • Fit for Future: Implementing the company’s strategy will require new skills, some of which are not yet available in the organisation to the extent required. Competency management is used to define the required skills and develop them where necessary. Last but not least, the digital transformation and the associated pressure to innovate are increasingly demanding and promoting agile, self-organised and highly customer-oriented working principles.
  • Future of Work: The changing demands that are placed on today’s working environment must be taken into account. The company aims to achieve a flat hierarchy and to streamline processes. This type of decentralised self-management and organisation is reflected in the participation of employees in the decision-making process.

These approaches will help Swissgrid to reduce the risks associated with the recruitment, retention and development of employees. Swissgrid considers the lack of suitable specialists to be the greatest risk. The struggle to find employees with the necessary expertise and qualifications will become even more acute in a labour market suffering from a shortage of skilled workers. In addition to the measures mentioned above, Swissgrid is therefore increasingly focusing on the training and further education of talented young employees. It is also important to respond appropriately and rapidly to the latest trends in the world of work. The original understanding of work as simply earning a living is becoming increasingly outdated: traditional principles are being replaced by new ones, such as «meaningfulness». The working methods of the future will also feature a high degree of virtualisation of working equipment, networking of people and stronger cooperation, combined with greater flexibility of employees’ places of work, working times and job content.

Swissgrid employees

As at 31 December 2023, 853 people were employed by Swissgrid (180 women and 673 men). Compared to the 2022 reporting year, the number of employees has increased by 16%. The reasons for this growth include Swissgrid’s additional areas of responsibility in accordance with the Winter Reserve Ordinance, which came into force in February 2023, the internalisation of functions previously performed by external service providers (particularly in the Grid Infrastructure business area), the strengthening of critical functions to reduce the risk of failure (particularly in the System Operations business area) and the company’s increasing need for digitalisation and innovation.

2023 2022 2021
Swissgrid employees Women Men Total Percentage Women Men Total Percentage Women Men Total Percentage
Total internal employees1 180 673 853 100% 163 573 736 100% 145 514 659 100%
Full-time employees 93 555 648 76% 83 481 564 77% 80 442 522 79%
Part-time employees 87 118 205 24% 80 92 172 23% 65 72 137 21%
Permanent employees 161 622 783 92% 144 535 679 92% 130 487 617 94%
Temporary employees2 18 41 59 7% 19 30 49 7% 15 18 33 5%
Without guaranteed working hours3 1 10 11 1% 0 8 8 1% 0 9 9 1%
< 30 years 34 81 115 13% 27 57 84 11% 30 44 74 11%
30 – 50 years 122 397 519 61% 112 344 456 62% 93 305 398 60%
> 50 years 24 195 219 26% 24 172 196 27% 22 165 187 28%
Executive Board 2 3 5 1% 1 4 5 1% 1 4 5 1%
Managers excl. Executive Board 13 99 112 13% 12 81 93 13% 10 75 85 13%
Employees without a management function 149 532 681 80% 137 460 597 81% 123 415 538 82%
Employees in training or paid by the hour 16 39 55 6% 13 28 41 6% 11 20 31 5%
Total external employees1 124 585 709 100% 113 530 643 100% 70 395 465 100%
Contracts via staff leasing companies4 11 56 67 9% 8 34 42 7% 2 23 25 5%
Contracts via service providers4 113 529 642 91% 105 496 601 93% 68 372 440 95%

1 Data is given as numbers of employees (headcount) and not as full-time equivalents.
2 The temporary positions are mainly internships, which form part of Swissgrid’s recruitment efforts.
3 Employees without guaranteed working hours are employees who are on call for visitor tours or for specific temporary and support work.
4 External employees with a contract via a staff leasing company or a service provider are usually employed for temporary projects that require technical competences that are only available to a limited extent within Swissgrid. This work is largely carried out in offices. One example is external employees who are not employed directly by Swissgrid, but who carry out specialised digitalisation and automation activities under contract via a service company.

Measures to attract talent

In the reporting year, Swissgrid presented itself as a progressive employer on various platforms – for example on its website with videos of its employees. In these videos, the company addresses potential applicants directly and draws their attention to the large number of interesting positions in the company. Swissgrid also utilises recruitment events organised by universities and universities of applied sciences in Switzerland and abroad. The company ensures the right conditions for attracting the best talent by interacting directly with students and graduates. Swissgrid has created a new «Young Talent Manager» position that focuses on attracting and supporting young talent.

Switzerland’s dual system for vocational education and training is unique and important for the country’s economic success. Swissgrid offers various apprenticeships, such as computer scientist with a federal certificate of proficiency (EFZ) specialising in platform development, digital business developer EFZ or commercial clerk EFZ. Swissgrid has joined forces with the training partner libs (Industrielle Berufslehren Schweiz) in this area. Young apprentices can expect an exciting and varied apprenticeship in a modern, unique company.

As part of National Future Day, the company invites schoolchildren to watch their parents or relatives at work for a day and discover their daily routine. In the reporting year, a total of 50 children took part in the event at the Aarau and Prilly locations.

In the 2023 Swiss Universum survey of the most attractive employers, conducted 10,870 students, Swissgrid was ranked 28th in the «Engineering» category (previous year: 24th). Once again, this makes Swissgrid the best rated company in the energy sector in the «Engineering» category. This reflects the success of the measures implemented to attract new talent and the stronger positioning of Swissgrid as an attractive and innovative company.

In 2023, Swissgrid was able to recruit 159 new employees, while 58 employees left the company. This includes nine departures due to retirement and shows that the company has grown in line with its Strategy 2027.

2023 2022 2021
New employees and employee turnover Women Men Total Women Men Total Women Men Total
New hires
< 30 years 13 8% 40 25% 53 33% 15 32 47 16 23 39
30 – 50 years 22 14% 69 43% 91 57% 17 61 78 18 30 48
> 50 years 0 0% 15 9% 15 9% 2 7 9 2 6 8
Total 35 22% 124 78% 159 100% 34 100 134 36 59 95
Fluctuations, including retirements
< 30 years 5 9% 18 31% 23 40% 14 17 31 9 15 24
30 – 50 years 9 16% 11 19% 20 34% 7 18 25 6 25 31
> 50 years 2 3% 13 22% 15 26% 3 14 17 2 10 12
Total 16 28% 42 72% 58 100% 24 49 73 17 50 67

Swissgrid offers employees market-based, fair and industry-standard remuneration. A salary band system, which is regularly reviewed and adjusted, serves as the basis for remuneration. Swissgrid’s remuneration model sets out conditions for individual and performance-related remuneration for management staff (senior and specialist managers), which is based on the achievement of personal and corporate objectives, and for special remuneration for employees, which is dependent on their personal target achievement. In addition, Swissgrid’s remuneration policy provides for individual, performance-related salary increases as part of employees’ annual salary reviews.

In 2023, the total annual remuneration, including performance-related remuneration, of the highest-earning person at Swissgrid was 5.89 times higher than the average total annual remuneration of all employees excluding the highest-paid person. In 2023, the average salary increase rate for all employees excluding the Executive Board was 0.8%. Due to the targeted and selective application of salary increases, the median annual remuneration of all employees (excluding the highest-paid person) has not changed in relation to the previous year.

Comparative key figures on remuneration 2023 2022 2021
Ratio between the total annual remuneration1 of the highest-paid person and the median of all employees2 5.89 5.55 5.19
Increase in annual remuneration3 of the highest-paid person (%) 0% 6.38% 0%
Average increase4 in annual remuneration3 of all employees (%) 0.80% 0.80% 0%
Median increase4 in annual remuneration3 of all employees2 (%) 0% 0% 0%
Ratio of the percentage increase in annual remuneration3 of the highest-paid person in relation to the median increase of all employees2 0 7.98 0

1 The total annual remuneration comprises both fixed and variable salary components.
2 All employees excluding the highest-paid person.
3 The annual remuneration refers to the fixed salary component excluding variable remuneration.
4 The increase was calculated and excludes salary increases due to promotions, lump sums to adjust for inflation and/or contractually defined structural salary increases.

The benefits Swissgrid provides to its employees as stipulated in the employment regulations are the same for all levels of employment. Life insurance and health insurance are privately organised in Switzerland. Unemployment insurance and disability insurance are covered by state social insurance, income compensation and disability insurance schemes. In the event of inability to work during the probation period as a result of illness or accident and through no fault of the employee, Swissgrid pays the employee 100% of the annual basic wages for a maximum of 30 days. In the event of inability to work as a result of illness or accident occasioned after the probation period and through no fault of the employee, Swissgrid pays the employee 100% of the annual basic wage for a maximum of 180 days. In the event of inability to work from the 181th day to the 720th day, Swissgrid has taken out a daily sickness benefits insurance which pays out 80% of the insured salary for a maximum of 550 days. In addition, all employees worldwide are privately insured for occupational and non-occupational accidents. The old-age pension scheme includes the AHV, which is also state-funded, as well as the pension fund, which is mandatory for all employees.

Swissgrid is affiliated with the PKE Vorsorgestiftung Energie pension fund. With assets of approximately CHF 12 billion and around 26,000 insured persons, PKE is one of the largest pension funds in Switzerland. Swissgrid’s employees are insured according to the statutory provisions and the effective pension regulations. Entry into the pension fund is mandatory for all employees subject to the BVG. The premiums consist of contributions by the employer and the employees.

Pension provision at Swissgrid 2023 2022 2021
Cover ratio of PKE Vorsorgestiftung Energie as at 31.12.2023  n/a1 107.7% 125.2%
Swissgrid risk contributions 0.24% 0.24% 0.24%
Employee risk contributions 0.16% 0.16% 0.16%
Swissgrid savings contributions (% of the insured salary) 7.2 – 22.7% 7.2 – 22.7% 7.2 – 22.7%
Employee savings contributions (% of the insured salary) 4.8 – 10.3% 4.8 – 10.3% 4.8 – 10.3%
Additional voluntary savings contributions by employees (% of the insured salary) 2 – 4% 2 – 4% 2 – 4%

1 The coverage ratio for the current financial year is announced by PKE in its annual report and is not yet available.

The company provides working conditions that ensure optimal collaboration within teams and across departments. Swissgrid also takes into account changing needs, such as improving employees’ work-life balance, including the possibility of flexible working. For example, around a quarter of Swissgrid employees worked part-time in the reporting year. In addition to the «Workation» option, Swissgrid also offers its employees the option of working from home for up to 50% of their working hours, provided this allows them to fulfil their function.

The digital transformation and the resulting pressure to innovate are increasingly giving rise to agile, self-organised working principles. Employees’ expectations of their employers are shifting towards a desire for greater participation and autonomy. Swissgrid creates an attractive working environment to make sure that its employees are motivated and will stay with the company for as long as possible: this includes key elements such as an appreciative corporate culture with a high degree of self-organisation, and flexible project structures that combine the existing skills of employees in a decentralised manner in line with requirements.

The further development of employees is a key concern for Swissgrid and is also included in its Strategy 2027. The desired digital transformation of the company requires corresponding skills. For this reason, Swissgrid launched a skills management programme in 2023 with the aim of defining the skills that will be required in the company in the future and identifying gaps. Skills assessments were carried out for 30% of employees to determine whether their current skills match the target skills that will be required in the future. These assessments will be carried out for all employees by the end of 2024. This will enable Swissgrid to create the basis for the systematic personal development of employees, tailored to their individual needs.

Swissgrid promotes employees, for example by offering numerous internal programmes in the areas of talent management and leadership development. In 2023, 57% of the management positions to be recruited were filled internally.

All employees with a permanent employment contract with Swissgrid receive regular performance appraisals. These meetings are mandatory and take place annually or, if desired, every six months. To assess the performance of employees in a consistent manner, employees and supervisors are given in-depth training in performance management. Performance appraisals are also checked for consistency via a bottom-up calibration process (from department to company level). The aim is to ensure that individual performance and target achievement are assessed as objectively as possible. In addition, a pilot programme for the «360-degree feedback» assessment was carried out in 2023 as part of the skills management approach.

Regular performance appraisals 2023 2022 2021
Employees with regular performance appraisals 94% 94% 95%
Proportion of women 91% 92% 92%
Proportion of men 94% 95% 96%
Proportion of permanent employees 100% 100% 100%
Proportion of temporary employees 25% 33% 33%

In addition to Swissgrid’s long-established system of succession planning for managers, and the ascertainment of employees’ potential, key functions were also identified for the first time in 2023. Swissgrid endeavours to spread the expertise needed for these functions across the company at an early stage. This also ensures the transfer of knowledge and the retention of expertise in the absence of key personnel.

Swissgrid uses its Ideas Forum to better integrate the needs its employees. This applies not only to technical workplaces, but also to the entire working environment. More specifically, ideas are sought for technological development, virtual networking and collaboration in the modern workplace. The focus of the Ideas Forum in 2023 was on topics that were addressed in Strategy 2027: strengthening the corporate culture and skills within the company. The Ideas Forum not only recognises and develops ideas successfully, it also enables their rapid implementation.

Swissgrid offers its employees early preparation for retirement via external courses and events. They also have the option to change career direction. This prepares employees for retirement through a targeted reduction in workload and responsibility, and can ease the transition. If Swissgrid is forced to part ways with employees, and believes that these individuals require assistance with their search for new employment, it offers outplacement counselling, an extension of the notice period or bridging benefits.

Swissgrid is not subject to a collective labour agreement. The interests of employees are safeguarded by seven staff representatives who are elected by the employees. They must represent the German, French and Italian-speaking regions of Switzerland and both genders. Two of the seven representatives also represent the employees on the pension committee. According to the Federal Act on Information and Consultation of Workers in Businesses (Participation Act), employee representatives have the right to information and special participation. This includes participation rights relating to occupational safety and employee protection, the transfer of companies in accordance with Articles 333 and 333a of the Swiss Code of Obligations, collective redundancies and affiliation to an occupational pension scheme. In the event of a mass dismissal of 30 or more employees within 30 days and for reasons not related to their individual performance appraisal, the employee representatives are given 14 days to be heard. They also have the opportunity to make suggestions on how redundancies can be avoided.

In order to identify potential for improvement as an employer, Swissgrid is interested in what its existing employees think of it as a company. Swissgrid therefore conducts employee surveys every two years. The last time this took place was in 2022. A clear majority of employees were satisfied with their overall work situation and rated Swissgrid as an attractive employer (on a scale of 0 to 100). The remuneration and working atmosphere in particular were rated as very positive.

Employee satisfaction1 20232 2022 20212
Women 80 80 88
Men 78 78 86
Total 78 78 85

1 Employee satisfaction is assessed on a scale of 0 to 100 in comparison with the «Swiss Employer Award» benchmark using a questionnaire.
2 As the employee survey is conducted every two years, the results are carried over from the previous year.

Measures for training and further education

Training and further education are central to equipping the workforce to do their jobs. For Swissgrid employees, training begins when they join the company. The induction programme introduces the most important topics and regulations relevant to the company, including Swissgrid’s Code of Conduct. There are also in-depth specialist onboarding and other training programmes tailored to the functions in various specialist areas. Examples include the training courses held as part of the new Enterprise Resource Planning solution in 2023.

In 2023, Swissgrid launched the Innovation Days as a measure to help it to develop into an innovative and highly digitalised company, as envisaged in the strategy. In particular, the event is designed to strengthen the company’s innovative strength and culture. At the Innovation Days, Swissgrid offers all employees training on new technologies and innovative methods. Swissgrid also organised the mandatory Safety & Security Days for the second time in a row to promote a culture of safety within the company.

Training courses at Swissgrid are held by internal experts, and can take the form of face-to-face events or e-learning courses. The internal experts receive didactic and pedagogical support and are given training several times a year. The train-the-trainer programme was further developed and improved in 2023. The quality of internal training and development is ensured through systematic feedback management and reviews, among other things. More than 85% of the feedback on internal training courses rated them as good or very good.

Swissgrid has been offering opportunities for personal development since June 2023 with a comprehensive range of online training courses focusing on soft skills, health, digital skills and communication. This new range of courses is supplemented by operational training and further education: in the current reporting year, training hours were recorded primarily in the categories «Operator training» (27%), «Safety & security» (20%) and «IT and tool training» (11%). Other important topics include compliance, project management, processes and principles.

Swissgrid’s corporate languages are defined as German and French, however knowledge of several languages is required due to employee’s activities throughout Switzerland and the country’s multilingualism. In 2023, 62 people attended a language course in German, 85 in French, 29 in English and 16 in Italian.

Whenever training needs cannot be covered internally, Swissgrid facilitates attendance of external training courses. In 2023, 31 employees completed further training at universities of applied sciences or universities. The majority obtained Certificates of Advanced Studies or Masters of Advanced Studies.

* Examples from the «Other» category include training on directives (e.g. compliance), project management training, individual topics such as «The Climate Fresk» or «Innovation Days», as well as basic and onboarding training courses that are not covered by the topic categories listed here.

In 2023, Swissgrid employees invested an average of just under 65 hours or around 1.5 weeks in their training and further education.

Executive Board Managers Employees (without a management function)1 Employees in training/paid by the hour2 Total (hours)
(excl. Executive Board)
33.6 50.8 73.0 30.1 67.1
32.8 55.8 58.7 25.3 55.2
33.3 51.3 69.9 28.7 64.6

1 Excluding employees in training/paid by the hour.
2 This includes interns, doctoral students, apprentices and employees paid by the hour.

Diversity and inclusion

Vision and goals

Swissgrid strives to be an innovative, diverse and inclusive company that all employees feel comfortable to work for and that allows them to develop their full potential regardless of their ethnic origin, sexual orientation, religion, age, gender, disability or other aspects of diversity. This principle is enshrined in Swissgrid’s Code of Conduct. At the same time, Swissgrid not only promotes creativity and innovation within the company, but also increases the agility and performance of its employees and business areas. The following principles are therefore part of Swissgrid’s diversity and inclusion strategy:

  • Swissgrid recognises its responsibility to protect the personal integrity of all employees. It does not tolerate any endangerment, impairment or violation of personal integrity of any kind, such as discrimination, bullying or sexual and non-sexual harassment. The Executive Board has enshrined these principles in a directive, along with corresponding implementation provisions for the protection of personal integrity.
  • Swissgrid guarantees non-discriminatory access to all roles and draws on a diverse talent pool when filling vacant positions. The development of all employees at Swissgrid is based on transparent and comprehensible criteria and is planned and implemented jointly by management and employees.
  • By providing the best possible working conditions, Swissgrid employees develop their full potential and can carry out their work to the best of their ability and achieve the goals they have set.
  • Leaders ensure an inclusive leadership culture in all areas and teams, which guarantees equal opportunities and the framework conditions for this and in which employees feel comfortable, contribute ideas, take responsibility and openly address challenges or conflicts.

Management approach

The world of work is becoming increasingly dynamic as a result of digitalisation. What is more, it is affected by the «VUCA» phenomenon, i.e. increasing volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. Swissgrid relies on a wide variety of employees to cope with this increasingly complex environment. Diverse teams with different skills, strengths, personalities, ideas and perspectives, but also with different characteristics such as gender, age, origin, education and length of service, are needed to promote creativity and innovation, as well as a high level of agility.

Swissgrid applies various approaches to maintain a high level of diversity within the company. This involves focusing on the structures and processes within the company, the corporate culture and the understanding of leadership. Equal opportunities are promoted by inclusive structures and processes – such as career paths – that are suitable for different groups. A culture of inclusion leads to fewer conflicts, greater employee satisfaction and lower staff turnover. These objectives are also achieved thanks to an inclusive understanding of leadership and consideration for the needs of diverse employees.

Diversity and inclusion are increasingly becoming a competitive factor. Without appropriate management, there is a risk of no longer being able to attract employees with the necessary skills and qualifications to work for Swissgrid. The company is therefore treading new paths to further increase its attractiveness as an employer.

Overview of diversity at Swissgrid

The Executive Board has five members, including a CEO. In the reporting year, the Executive Board consisted of three men and two women from German-speaking, French-speaking and Romansh-speaking Switzerland. The Board of Directors is the company’s supreme body and has nine members, one of whom is a woman. Further information on the composition of the Board of Directors can be found in the Corporate Governance Report.

Diversity of the Board of Directors and Executive Board Board of Directors Executive Board
Gender Number % Number %
Men 8 89% 3 60%
Women 1 11% 2 40%
< 30 years 0 0% 0 0%
30 – 50 years 1 11% 1 20%
> 50 years 8 89% 4 80%
Place of origin
German-speaking Switzerland 7 78% 2 40%
French-speaking Switzerland 1 11% 2 40%
Italian-speaking Switzerland 1 11% 0 0%
Romansh-speaking Switzerland 0 0% 1 20%

In 2023, Swissgrid employed 180 women in its operational business areas, 8% of whom have management responsibility in these areas. This corresponds to 13% of operational management positions. A detailed overview of the composition of Swissgrid’s employees by gender, age, employment and position can be found in the «Swissgrid employees» and in the GRI index (GRI 405-1). Swissgrid’s employees come from 39 nations. The majority, 68%, are from Switzerland, and 18% are from Germany.

Country of origin of employees1 Number %
Switzerland 576 68%
Germany 153 18%
France 20 2%
Italy 17 2%
Spain 11 1%
Greece 10 1%
Other (33 nations) 66 8%

1 Multiple citizenships are not recorded.

Promoting work-life balance is a cornerstone of Swissgrid’s HR strategy. Changing needs are taken into account, and solutions are generally made available to all employees. These can include hybrid working or alternative working models such as job sharing and part-time work. Swissgrid also offers support and care services for children and family members with external partners such as Profawo. Swissgrid employees also have the opportunity to take sabbaticals.

Parental leave is granted in accordance with the statutory provisions (14 weeks) and, in the case of paternity leave, an extra week on top of the statutory two weeks. The adoption of a child under the age of five is treated in the same way as a birth in terms of parental leave. These provisions apply irrespective of the employment relationship (i.e. full-time or part-time work, temporary or permanent contract). In 2023, four female employees and 20 male employees became parents at Swissgrid. All employees resumed their roles at the end of their parental leave. The retention rate of employees 12 months after resuming work was also 100% in 2023.

Key figures for parental leaveWomenMenTotalWomenMenTotalWomenMenTotal
Employees entitled to parental leave420245192482230
Employees who have taken parental leave420245192482230
Employees who are still on parental leave1000022257
Employees resuming their function after agreed parental leave420244172161622
Return rate100%100 %100%80%100 %95%100%94 %96%
Employees who were still employed 12 months after their return to work4172161622n/an/a n/a
Retention rate100%100 %100%100%100 %100%n/an/an/a

1 As at the end of the relevant reporting year.

Equal pay for work of equal value is a matter of course for Swissgrid. Swissgrid has created transparency in this regard with the introduction of role-based salary bands in 2019. In 2023, the Swiss Association for Quality and Management Systems (SQS) once again audited wages at Swissgrid. SQS confirmed in this maintenance audit that Swissgrid continues to provide pay equity between women and men. With a deviation rate of 3.5% (2021: 3.8%), the result of the audit remains below the threshold of 5%. The remuneration of all employees was audited, with the exception of interns and employees paid by the hour. Swissgrid can therefore continue to use the SQS «Fair Compensation» certificate in accordance with the criteria of the Association of Compensation & Benefits Experts without any restrictions.

Swissgrid protects the personal integrity of its employees via suitable internal and external points of contact. In the event of breaches of personal integrity, employees can contact an external reporting centre, their line manager, an internal contact person from the HR department, a staff representative or the investigative body, the Compliance function. Swissgrid employees can obtain free expert assistance with personal and business difficulties from the consultancy firm Movis. Counselling is available to employees seven days a week, 24 hours a day in all parts of the country, and is treated confidentially. Whistleblowers who report serious compliance violations are protected by Swissgrid’s Whistleblowing Policy. This aims to encourage the reporting of misconduct and defines the confidentiality of reports and the protection of whistleblowers.

As part of its Strategy 2027, Swissgrid is strengthening eight cultural dimensions, including feedback, trust and learning. One of these dimensions is inclusive leadership. This means that managers take into account the diversity of their employees and their needs, ensure equal opportunities and create the necessary framework conditions. Leaders promote a climate of respect, trust and (psychological) security in which all employees can contribute their knowledge and experience and develop their full potential. Inclusive leadership is part of Swissgrid’s corporate culture and the aim is to anchor even more firmly throughout the company.

Inclusive management at Swissgrid is based on the guiding and management principles, which define aspects such as communication, a sense of responsibility and the actions of managers. In order to establish these principles even more firmly within the company, managers receive targeted training on various aspects of inclusive leadership. At the 2023 management meeting, awareness was raised about dealing with «unconscious bias», and moderated discussions were held to promote an open feedback culture.

Women@swissgrid is an initiative by female employees for networking, inspiring each other and learning from each other. The committee organises annual lectures and workshops on topics such as negotiation coaching.

Discrimination reports: in the 2023 financial year, no cases of discrimination were reported to the external reporting centre, via the «RiskTalk» app or to Compliance.

Reports of cases of discrimination 2023 2022
Via external reporting centre 0 0
Via RiskTalk app 0 0
Via Compliance 0 0
Total 0 0