Employment in Switzerland is governed by the Employment Law. The first step one must take before starting work in Switzerland is to sign an employment contract, also known as a Swiss individual contract of employment. There are different types of such contracts, depending on the type of work needed.
Types of employment contracts
Individual contract of employment is one of the most popular contracts signed in Switzerland. According to this contract, the employee is obligated to render labor in the services of the employer. It can be signed for a determined or indeterminate time period, and the employer is obligated to pay remuneration.
A normal contract of employment refers to a contract that has fixed terms and conditions in regards to the conclusion, content and notice of termination. For such type of employment contract, the Swiss Federal Government of the Cantonal Authorities are responsible for enacting the respective terms and conditions.
Collective labor agreements are also available in Switzerland and they are also known as CLAS. Under CLAS, the employers or the organizations of the employers, as well as the trade unions formulate the terms and conditions for the conclusion. They also document the content and notice of termination for individual contracts of employments.
What are the duties of an employee?
According to the Swiss employment law, the employee has two major duties: duty to provide labor and duties of fidelity.
Duty to provide labor
The duty to provide labor represents the obligation of the Swiss employee to perform work in the service of the employer. It is mandatory that the labor is performed personally, unless the parties agree to a different working system.
The employee must also respect the working hours set according to the contract. Working hours represents how much work does an employee must perform in a day. There are multiple possibilities, such as part time work or work sharing. In addition, there are specific regulation regarding the maximum working hours per week, as well as night work and Sunday work. There are cases in which the employer may request the employee to perform extra working hours, but they must be remunerated.
Duties of fidelity
In Switzerland, duty of fidelity refers to a duty of the employee to uphold the justified interests of an employer to the extent of due fidelity, known also as a duty to desist.
Duties of the employer
The most important duty of the employer is to pay remuneration. The employer is required to pay the remuneration contractually agreed, determined by the type of Swiss employment contract existent between the parties. The time of remuneration depends on the labor provided, measured by periods of time. It can be payment by hour, day, month or year.
Another duty of the employer is the duty of welfare, which is not regulated by the statute law. It can be described as the responsibility of the employer to protect the justified interests of an employee.