People & culture
At Bachem, we believe that our employees make the difference. That’s why People & Culture is one of our five strategic foundations. We strive to attract, retain, and develop highly motivated, well-qualified individuals and today engage the world’s largest workforce of qualified specialists devoted to the field of peptide chemistry.
This workforce requires being passionate to innovate and meet the future needs of customers. The company consequently offers an attractive, safe and inclusive work environment. Details about our personnel can be found in the Annual Report.
Personal Development of Employees incl. Vocational Training, and Talent Management
Bachem’s claim to be the “Leading Partner in Tides” is predicated on very high educational attainment of workforce members at every level and high subject area specialization. The growing complexity of the products the Company manufactures and the services it is expected to provide, and even more decisive the increasing requirements of customers and official bodies in terms of production and regulatory processes call for a highly qualified workforce throughout the organization.
At the Bachem Group, roughly a third of the employees has earned a degree from a university and another fifth a degree from a university of applied science. Over a third of Bachem’s employees worldwide has completed a vocational apprenticeship, while this figure stands at well over 50% for employees in Switzerland.
Vocational apprenticeship training has a high priority at Bachem. The Swiss dual system of education provides young school graduates at the group’s sites in Bubendorf and Vionnaz with an excellent opportunity to gain specific vocational training once they finish their compulsory schooling and strive to enter the working population. Apprentices acquire theoretical knowledge and general education at a vocational school and gain practical experience working at the Company. In providing these apprenticeships, Bachem is both discharging part of its social responsibility towards society and also making an important contribution to the maintenance of non-academic professional training in Switzerland.
Bachem Americas offer a program of mid and long-term vocational training and participates in the Bio-Flex Apprenticeship program whereas at Bachem UK vocational training is organized in summer internships for undergraduate students.
In addition to the professional qualifications of its workforce acquired through a vocational apprenticeship or university degree program, the Company attaches great importance to providing employees with training and continuing education. The high level of specialization and increasingly tough requirements pertaining to quality and operating procedures call for additional specialist expertise. Bachem provides opportunities for continual professional development to employees as appropriate through internal programs and external providers.
Regularly held employee appraisals help to maintain the dialogue between employees and line managers and systematically check mutual expectations, performance and employee’s personal and professional development. For succession planning and development a system is in place where talents can be identified and nominated as successors to certain positions. A specialist career path running parallel to the concept of the management career path offers experts and specialists an alternative career opportunity, but with less or no management tasks.
Occupational Health and Safety
Bachem wants a high level of safety and health for all persons working at Bachem including subcontractors. To achieve this standard, appropriate equipment as well as training for new employees is provided, refreshed at intermittent intervals and addressing all employees. Subcontractors are trained before they can start working on site.
New and changing operations are assessed concerning employee health and safety risks. Emphasis is placed on measures for safe handling of chemicals and hazardous substances and the provision of appropriate protective equipment.
Bachem strives according to its Health and Safety Policy to avoid all accidents and injuries. In order to move towards this ambition Bachem aims to reduce the LTIR (Lost Time Incident Rate) to no higher than 1.0 by 2026.
Diversity, Equal Opportunity, Labor Rights, and Fair Working Conditions
By 2026 Bachem wants to count a 10% higher proportion of women in its workforce, upper management and regional executive committees as compared to 2020. Increased efforts are made by human resources to attract and retain women for science-based professions and in management positions. Moreover, initiatives to promote science-based professions to young females are supported.
Bachem provides equal opportunities to all employees. This principle is not only stated in charters and handbooks but lived by in hiring and remuneration practices. In particular, this equality applies unconditionally with regard to the terms of employment, the principle of equal pay for equal work, performance incentives and the Group’s professional development and promotion policies.
Bachem’s commitment to diversity is also expressed by the goal to reflect as a company the local communities in the workforce. Site managements are mandated to define demographic characteristics that should be appropriately represented. Monitoring their distribution, setting goals and launching of improvement initiatives will realize their improved representation.
Bachem is committed to providing a work environment free of harassment, discrimination, retaliation, and disrespectful or other unprofessional conduct. The corresponding principles are put down in Corporate Guidelines and handbooks, and are trained on a regular basis, e.g. by a training video “Conduct@Bachem”, covering the topics of information security, corruption and bribery, discrimination and harassment as well as whistleblowing. The training is a global standard that is retrained annually.
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