Background

How young people are changing the world

Companies are adapting to the younger generation. Because they have very different expectations and requirements as employees and customers. “Young Voice” aims to create a network for young people at Swiss Post by establishing a community and to bring generations together.

Sandra Gonseth

Young Voice – a working group for young Swiss Post employees – was founded in 2018 at their own initiative. Pictured: the founding members. (Copyright: Monika Flückiger)

They are young, work at Swiss Post and want to make an impact together: Young Voice, the network for young Swiss Post employees. They now make up a community to extend their reach (see image above).

“We’re interested in the issues that matter to the younger generation, what Swiss Post’s position on them is and how we can generate even greater enthusiasm and vibrancy,” explains co-founder Reto Schindler.

He studied psychology and joined Swiss Post as a trainee four years ago. Today he works at PostalNetwork. “We carry on when Swiss Post’s high-quality programmes for career and university entry come to an end.”  The fluctuation rate amongst 20 to 29-year-olds is relatively high at Swiss Post – as elsewhere throughout Switzerland. “There is often a lack of prospects and opportunity to assume responsibility,” he points out based on personal experience. “We want to ensure the voices of young people are heard to shape Swiss Post’s future together.” Young Voice has already achieved its first success stories: involvement in reverse mentoring (young people coaching managers), set-up of a development programme for young network employees or raising awareness on management bodies.

Swiss Post relies on young, highly motivated and well-trained employees: around 22 percent are under the age of 35 (Swisscom: 28 percent). On average, they remain at Swiss Post for 5.2 years (Swisscom: 5.3 years) which is in line with the Swiss average.

“Young people are our current and future employees and customers,” underlines Roberto Cirillo, CEO at Swiss Post. “We must learn from them now and understand their expectations and requirements. Only in this way will Swiss Post remain an attractive employer capable of providing added value for its customers.”

To retain young people at the company, Swiss Post is developing new career profiles and supporting the training of young talent. At PostMail, apprentices take up a position of responsibility immediately after training via the support programme. “We are delighted when apprentices show the motivation and desire to stay with us,” says vocational trainer Joel Dätwyler.

These measures pay off with four out of five apprentices remaining at Swiss Post after their training.

But who are these youngsters actually? They have grown up with the Internet, smartphones and social media and no longer distinguish between the digital and analogue worlds. Someone who knows how young people tick is Yannick Blättler. He advises companies on how to deal with young customers and employees: “Understanding how young people think allows you to identify the opportunities and risks for our future society.”

Did you know?

  • 22 percent of Swiss Post employees are under the age of 35
  • Young people stay at Swiss Post for 5.2 years on average
  • Swiss Post takes on 81 percent of apprentices after completion of their training
  • The average age of mail carriers is 46
  • PostLogistics has the most young employees

Generations

X = 1965 to 1980

Y = 1981 to 1995

Z = since 1995

The baby boomers (1945 to 1964) were predominant on the employment market until 2009. In 2010, they were overtaken by generation X, and in 2014 by the millennials. Generation X makes up the greatest share of the employment market today at 36.2%, followed by the millennials at 33%. Almost one in ten of people in employment (7.7%) belongs to generation Z.

Swiss Federal Statistical Office, as at 2018

written by

Sandra Gonseth

Editor