Vebego AG is a forerunner within Vebego in terms of making and measuring impact. The Swiss business group has more than 6,000 employees in total and works systematically on a role as a meaningful, attractive employer. Since January 2020, Vebego is the first Swiss company in facility services to be certified as a Great Place to Work. Already previously, in 2019, Vebego was recognised as Great Start to Work . Vebego is therefore an example for all of Vebego and for other companies as an attractive training company, as a workplace that provides high quality training.
Opportunities for school-leavers
Vebego AG invests in the development of employees with targeted training and education, among other things. Through its own Vebego Academy, it provides follow-up training that offers employees the opportunity to grow in professional competence, responsibility and salary. In addition, with the ‘Learning Company’ project, Vebego AG offers opportunities to newcomers to the labour market. The participants in this project receive multi-year basic training and they work independently all that time on objects where Vebego provides building cleaning. The project currently has 21 participants, says Heinz Bucher, who was responsible for the practical training until the end of 2020. ‘It is a varied group, with 15-year-olds who still have to go to school, 20-year-olds who have been searching unsuccessfully for work for some time, but also, for example, a somewhat older refugee. Students are obligated to attend school one day a week. There are also internal ‘Learning Days’ every month that are attended by students from all over Switzerland. That is always a great day, with a mix of theory and practice and always finishing with a written test at the end of the day.’
Vebego fulfils its role as practical trainer for social reasons as well as for enlightened self-interest. Bucher: ‘We have been actively working in this manner as a learning company for five years now. We also keep everyone on board, if possible. That is part of our social profile: we want to offer people a Great Start to Work. At the same time, the project also provides for an increase in new employees. Professionals are in very short supply in Switzerland. We can hardly find any people. This project allows people to get to know us, so they can see that we are a versatile employer with many opportunities. It works: one-half to three-quarters of the students also remain associated with Vebego afterward.’
However, not everyone gets a job just like that after the training, Sina Vetter emphasises. She took over the project from Heinz Bucher starting in 2021. ‘You have to be good at your work and you have to fit with our values. We also cannot just hire every person we have trained ourselves. Our third-year students, in particular, are considered very well-trained and can be deployed immediately in professional practice. They are very much in demand and sometimes go to work elsewhere. The nice thing is that some of them nevertheless do return after a time, because they think Vebego is a nice family.’
Sina Vetter wants to place even more emphasis in the coming years on measuring the impact of the project. How many students remain at Vebego, how many want to remain? Where do the rest go, what does their further career look like? She feels supported by a few successes. In May 2020, Vebego AG was named one of the ten best large employers in Switzerland. In the last Culture Audit, which is a mandatory component of the Great Place To Work methodology, the participants in the Learning Company project gave Vebego a very high rating.