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Swiss Railways offers bonus to fill staff void

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Swiss Railways offers bonus to fill staff void
11:23 CEST+02:00

Swiss Federal Railways has offered to pay 2,500 francs ($2,800) to staff members who recommend their friends and acquaintances for job interviews in a move aimed at tackling a shortage of qualified staff.

The transport firm's existing workers will receive the reward even if the person they recommend for the position is not hired in the end, Der Sonntag reported at the weekend.

The measure is applied by many companies in Switzerland. However, in contrast to the case of the public-funded company, bonuses for workers are usually conditional on the recommended person being offered a position.

Swiss Federal Railways spokesman, Christian Ginsig, justified the decision by saying that it is one of the most efficient ways to recruit people because “it is a motivation for workers to help the company find good staff.”

Ginsig added that it is “not always easy to find new workers” since “the job market has dried up”. For certain positions, like train conductors, the company is even forced to look for employees in neighboring countries.

With 28,000 employees, Swiss Federal Railways is one of the biggest companies in the country. It is currently suffering a shortage of several hundred staff, particularly conductors, train drivers and IT specialists.

This is the second time the firm has touted a cash incentive with the plan previously introduced in 2007 when the company was having trouble finding engine mechanics, ticket inspectors and IT staff.

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