In December 2017, the Swiss Parliament introduced new measures for the communication of job vacancies in occupations that meet or exceed an unemployment rate of 8%. These new obligations follow the popular mass immigration initiative of February 2014. What will be the impact of these recent changes and how will the hiring process unfold?
The new restrictions, which will come into force on 1 July 2018, aim to give unemployed people in Switzerland a head start when looking for work. As of that date, any company needing employees for work in Switzerland will be required to communicate the positions to be filled to the nearest ORP (Office Regional Placement), when the professions it recruits display an unemployment rate greater than or equal to the 8% threshold (5% on 1 January 2020). There will then be a period of five working days during which this position cannot be registered on any platform other than at the ORP, at the risk of sanctions.
The online portal travail.swiss was created in order to facilitate the linking of employers and job candidates registered with an ORP and to provide relevant information, in particular regarding the professions concerned by the obligation. This platform invites recruiters to fill in all the details of the vacant position, including the occupation sought, the particular requirements of the job, the place of work and the expected date of entry into service, the type of work contract, as well as the occupancy rate, the address and the name of the entity. The more precise the information, the better the ORP will be able to propose applications meeting the requested criteria. It is therefore advisable to describe the needs of the profile in detail.
The portal automatically transmits this information to the competent ORP. It’s also possible to obtain the contact details of the ORP and communicate by mail, phone or email. The ORP then carries out the validation of the job offer and sends to the human resources a selection of candidates corresponding to the desired criteria, and this, within three working days. In the meantime, they are posting the recruitment announcement through the online Job-Room platform, which is only visible to jobseekers registered with the ORP.
The deadline for publication of the job announcement is the day after the posting date on the Job-Room platform and last five working days. Throughout this period, jobseekers have the opportunity to submit their application directly to Human Resources. The ORP should be notified if a candidate is invited for an interview or aptitude test, or if the hiring has taken place. After this period, the job offer may be released by any other means, at the discretion of the company.
However, exceptions apply to this new procedure in order to respond to the reality of certain companies. Thus, if the employer plans to allocate the vacant position to a member of his immediate family, or to an employee, trainee or apprentice present for at least six months in his company, he escapes the obligation to advertise with his ORP.
This obligation is also cancelled when the post is filled by a candidate already registered with the unemployment services. Finally, when the job offer concerns a job that doesn’t exceed fourteen calendar days, it will not be necessary to announce it to the ORP. This last measure aims to facilitate the hiring of a candidate in emergency situations, where the entry into the office must be immediate. Before extending the hiring of the recruited person beyond 14 days, he must disseminate the offer on the travail.swiss platform and respect the ban of five days.
Placement agencies, headhunters or temporary employment agencies will also have to comply with this new procedure when they propose their pool of candidates and they aren’t registered with an ORP. Thus, if they are directly solicited by an organisation, they will have to follow the obligation of announcement by publishing the concerned offer on the travail.swiss portal and respecting the five days deadline before presenting their postulants.
The Swiss Federal Council plans to reduce the threshold at which these measures apply to 5% by January 2020. These changes play a protective role in the face of jobseekers registered with the Regional Offices of Placement, who temporarily have exclusive access to vacancies. Extensively, it’s the whole of Swiss residents who will benefit to the detriment of foreign workers, more and more numerous in the territory.