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LLB Annual Report 2020 de


Information checkedInformation geprüft Employees

Employees are a company's greatest asset. In order to retain excellent, committed employees and gain new ones, it is essential to create an appealing work environment and to position itself as an attractive employer. The LLB Group has done this successfully for years. It has been recognised both internally and externally for its commitment to its employees.

LLB as employer

As at the end of December 2020, the LLB Group had 1'225 employees (2019: 1'234), who together filled 1'064 full-time positions (2019: 1'077). This makes LLB one of the largest employers in Liechtenstein.

Performance pledge and employee development

As a modern employer, we position ourselves as having the following strengths: We offer a corporate culture based on partnership, interesting work content and plenty of scope for growth. High-achieving employees have excellent development opportunities and prospects. Standardised processes allow both managers and employees to receive regular feedback on their performance and their development potential.

The performance pledge formulated by Group Human Resources was set out in a strategic HR vision (see illustration below). This is an important instrument to raise awareness of the supportive yet demanding work environment.

Value-oriented compensation

The LLB Group offers attractive employment conditions. It spent CHF 181.0 million (2019: CHF 192.9 million) on salaries and social contributions in 2020 (see notes to the consolidated income statement).

The LLB Group takes aspects of value orientation into consideration in all areas of the company. We have a modern compensation system that is considered exemplary in the banking sector. For the majority of employees, it includes a variable remuneration component. In 2013, we decided to introduce the Market-Adjusted Performance Indicator (MAPI) so as to be able to make a careful and objective evaluation of the management's performance (see chapter "Compensation report"). The model was developed in conjunction with FehrAdvice & Partners AG, Zurich, and is based on the results of behavioural economics research carried out by Professor Ernst Fehr from the University of Zurich.

We set great store by fair compensation that explicitly recognises skills and performance. Women and men in the same position and at the same performance level are in the same pay scale and wage model. This is valid for all our business locations.

Chart on Strategic vision

Communicating with employees

A clear, consistent and transparent approach when addressing employees is essential for successful corporate management. This is all the more so in crisis situations like the corona pandemic, which affected many parts of day-to-day operations in 2020. For this reason, we intensified internal communication yet again during the reporting year. The key tool here was the intranet. We provided information on the latest developments Group-wide – tailored to the individual companies – in the form, for instance, of regular updates on the coronavirus. The Group CEO put out a quarterly newsletter to update employees on current projects and innovations.

The Group Forum, which is an annual Group-wide information event where the Group Executive Board reports on the latest developments in the company, was adapted in 2020 to comply with pandemic requirements. Instead of a physical event with an audience, it was broadcast as a discussion round on the intranet, with all employees being able to participate virtually.

Similarly, LLB (Österreich) AG moved its regular information events to the intranet, where it also posted video messages from members of the Board of Management. Bank Linth, too, conducted employee information events virtually when possible, if they could not be held physically.

In the autumn of 2020, LLB started to upgrade its intranet so as to be able to reach employees in a more targeted and appealing way in the future. It plans not only to use the intranet for communication, but also develop it into a collaboration platform.

Well anchored in the region

It is important to us that our managers understand the mindset and concerns of our clients. And for this reason, almost 100 per cent of the managers and the majority of employees in the main business locations have their roots in their respective region. As a result, they are highly dedicated to the company and have a high level of integrity. They also take a long-term view, which is very much appreciated by the clients. To meet the demand for skilled employees, LLB relies on commuters who travel every day from eastern Switzerland (2020: 263; 2019: 264) and the Austrian state of Vorarlberg (2020: 85; 2019: 85) to Liechtenstein. This makes LLB a major regional employer in the Rhine Valley. Bank Linth recruits almost all of its professionals from the Swiss regions of Lake Zurich, Sarganserland and Winterthur.

Attractive work environment

We continually implement measures to improve the work environment so that we can position ourselves actively in the competition for the best talent. Here we focus in particular on health promotion in the workplace, raising job quality and flexibility of working hours and location.

Flexible work environment

In recent years, the LLB Group has responded to the wish increasingly expressed by its employees for remote mobile working and ramped up its home office capacities. This process was accelerated enormously by the corona pandemic in the reporting year. By the autumn of 2020, the technical conditions were in place so that almost all employees could work from home. When Covid-19 measures eventually come to an end, we will still offer the option of home office working. Regulations have already been drawn up accordingly.

Compatibility of work and life situation

Enabling a high degree of compatibility between work and private life makes for an attractive employer. In recent years, therefore, we have pushed ahead with projects offering greater flexibility of working hours and location. Most employees work under the trust-based working time model. Under this model, they determine, in consultation with their manager, exactly how their working time is to be structured and different workloads managed. A reduction of working hours from full-time to 80 or 90 per cent is, in consultation with their manager, possible as well – this also applies to management positions.

Under the "FreiZeit-Kauf" (purchase leisure time) scheme, employees can increase their holiday entitlement by five or ten days and forego a corresponding amount of pay in return. This option is highly appreciated and finding ever greater resonance: in the reporting year, 106 employees (2019: 137) purchased a total of 745 additional leave days (2019: 995). We also support paternity leave and permit our employees care leave in the case of a family emergency. The "Villa Wirbelwind" crèche in Vaduz, which was set up in co-operation with the Liechtenstein Bankers Association, is open to the children of all Liechtenstein bank employees. Long-service employees are rewarded with a sabbatical. 49 employees (2019: 34) with long-service anniversaries of ten, twenty, thirty or forty years went on a sabbatical for up to four weeks in 2020.

Breakdown by employment type *

* Including permanent and temporary employees

Breakdown by nationality *

* Including permanent and temporary employees

Initiative for employees over 50

Rapid digital developments and growing complexity are affecting the workplace, making job profiles more demanding. Staying motivated and up-to-date is a challenge – especially for employees who have been in professional life for a long time. At our Liechtenstein location, 26 per cent of employees are over the age of 50. To ensure they remain fit for the working world of the future, we have developed a special programme. It includes, among other things, offerings to strengthen professional and methodological competence. Training courses and workshops planned for 2020 had to be cancelled due to restrictions introduced in response to the coronavirus pandemic. They will be held again as soon as the situation allows. A new service offering for employees turning 50, namely an analysis of their financial position, was introduced however. This new service offering allows them to receive free financial planning advice for their retirement.

Health and safety

LLB successfully completed an assessment by Gesundheitsförderung Schweiz (Swiss Health Promotion) during the reporting year, and we are now the first bank in Liechtenstein to carry the "Friendly Work Space" label. To be awarded the label, a company must meet a number of criteria. Workplace health management has to be integrated in management systems and be perceived as a management task. Personality- and health-promoting working structures have also to be in place. The external assessors emphasised in their assessment that LLB takes health-related considerations into account with regard to a range of HR processes, employee offerings and infrastructure. This is reflected, for example, in the selection of personnel as well as in the range of opportunities for targeted training and professional education.

We want to reduce the absenteeism rate, which indicates the incidence of accidents and long-term illnesses, through these and other measures. We were able to meet our target of up to 2.5 per cent in the reporting year. In 2020, we registered 133 absences (2019: 149), corresponding to a rate of 1.5 per cent (2019: 2 %).

Support at difficult times

Our aim is to reduce short- and long-term absences and to facilitate the return to work. Mental stress can often result in physical illness and vice versa. Our employees are therefore able to gain free and anonymous access to psychological counselling should they find themselves in difficult work or life situations. We also offer support to employees returning to work after a long absence and to those with serious health problems. Providing practical support enables employees to maintain or regain their productivity.

High employee satisfaction

Employee satisfaction is an indicator of whether it is possible to retain motivated, high-achieving employees in the company. To understand where we stand in this respect, we regularly conduct in-depth employee surveys at the companies of the LLB Group. In the 2020 survey these achieved very good ratings against the main criteria again. They improved upon their result from the last survey in 2017 in the criterion commitment, which is particularly important to the success of a company. LLB AG and Bank Linth thus belong to the top-rated 20 per cent of the comparable group. Results from the survey for the criteria satisfaction and evaluation of the company as an employer were consistent, and that at a high level. LLB AG and Bank Linth consequently also scored very well against the criterion of recommending the company to others. Employees were more critical than they were three years ago in the areas of structures and processes as well as work and leisure. We will, naturally, look into what lies behind this change.

The positive overall rating from the employees led to the two banks being honoured with the Swiss Employer Award at the end of 2020. Overall, they rank among the top 10 employers in Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

Diversity of employees and managers

As various studies have shown, teams that are diverse are more productive and more innovative. People of different nationalities working together has been commonplace at the LLB Group for many years. In 2020, 24 per cent of our employees were Liechtenstein nationals, 37 per cent Swiss nationals and 25 per cent were Austrian nationals. All in all, people from 36 nations work at the LLB Group. We are committed to ensuring that our client base is reflected in our employee mix. This also applies to our traditional cross-border markets in Germany and the rest of Western Europe as well as to the growth markets of Central and Eastern Europe and the Middle East.

Breakdown by gender *

* Including permanent and temporary employees

The proportion of women working for the LLB Group is relatively high at 43 per cent, though they are still under-represented in leadership positions. The first woman was appointed to the Group Executive Board in 2016 (see chapter "Corporate governance").

Women in management positions:

  • Executive management: 5 men, 1 woman
  • Senior management: 25 men, 1 woman

The Board of Directors of LLB, which is publicly listed, has been characterised by an above-average proportion of women since 2014. At the end of 2020, with two out of the six members women, they represented a third (33 per cent) * of the board members. 91 employees were assigned to the "Potential Pools", from which, among other things, future managers are recruited internally; of these, 27 were female.

* In November of the reporting year, there was a change in the Board of Directors. As a result, the board temporarily consisted of six instead of seven members. Without this special effect, the proportion of women on the Board of Directors would be 29 per cent.

Breakdown by age group *

* Including permanent and temporary employees

Staff development

For the LLB Group, training and professional education is an important instrument for increasing its competitiveness. In 2020, we invested CHF 1.4 million (2019: CHF 1.7 million) in the targeted development of managers, talent and competences. By doing so, we were able to fill 63 per cent (2019: 59 %) of management positions that became vacant internally in the reporting year. To give existing employees an overview of their individual development paths, we rolled out the "Career Planning" project. The development-oriented job profiles defined under it show the different levels of professionalism. It enables us to explain to our employees what the prospects are in their current job and beyond.

Measuring the success of staff development

The LLB Group has established various processes in recent years to support the systematic further development of its staff and internal pool of specialists and experts. Based on regular assessments of performance and development potential as well as strategic staffing needs within the Group, concrete action plans can be developed and implemented for all employees. There are, among other things, so-called "Potential Pools". 91 individuals, or 10.3 per cent of employees (2019: 95 individuals, 8.9 %), were assigned to one of five "Potential Pools" in 2020.

Digitalisation of personnel management

The LLB Group has had a digital portal for some years now that offers employees and managers a uniform platform for a variety of different HR applications, ranging from tools for learning management to onboarding new employees. At the same time, two management-intensive processes (performance management and people development) were also system supported and automated, improving and facilitating performance measurement and employee development. The HR portal also enables employees to network more closely internally over a collaboration platform. What is more, they can store personal information such as an emergency contact, language skills and education and training on it. The information can then be retrieved and used as required.

We are increasingly using digital tools for recruitment purposes, too. The focus is on recruiting via our social media channels, i. e. LinkedIn, Instagram and Xing.

Client adviser certification

With mandatory SAQ client adviser certification, we are ensuring the outstanding advisory competence of the LLB Group for the long term according to uniform quality criteria. Despite more difficult circumstances due to Covid-19 measures, we pushed ahead with the certification of our clients advisers in 2020 and so the first tranche of employees with client contact successfully completed the programme – in all, this corresponds to around 80 per cent of all client advisers. Others will follow in the coming years. The SAQ certification also complies with the regulatory requirements arising from the European Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) and the Swiss Financial Services Act (FinSA). In 2020, we invested CHF 176'000 (2019: CHF 318'000) in training programmes in accordance with the standards of the Swiss Association for Quality (SAQ).

Professional training

Liechtensteinische Landesbank lives up to its responsibility as one of the largest providers of training in Liechtenstein. In the reporting year, 30 apprentices (2019: 34) at the LLB Group benefited from high-quality dual professional training, which combines theory and practice. The classic basic training remains the main pillar of the development programme for our junior employees. We believe that the provision of a broad education is a key task, especially as through the Federal Vocational Baccalaureate (FVB) it allows young adults to keep their options open to go to a university of applied sciences or a traditional university.

Bachelor, work and study, and master programmes

Since 2014, the LLB Group has had a greater focus on university graduates. There are three different programmes available for candidates: practical-based direct entry for graduates (2020: 4 participants); a work and study programme for postgraduates in the final phase of their studies (2020: 2 participants); and a trainee programme for postgraduates (2020: 4 participants). Talented young people get to know our company in-depth from the inside as part of an eighteen-month on-the-job trainee programme covering three areas of work.

The participants of these three programmes are in contact with top management, are involved in day-to-day business from their very first day of work and profit from the comprehensive spectrum of tasks of a universal bank. Those who demonstrate performance and commitment are recommended for a permanent position.

In order to enhance its profile as an attractive employer, the LLB Group is regularly present at the Universities of Liechtenstein and St. Gallen, FHS St. Gallen University of Applied Sciences and Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW) in Winterthur. This is a response, among other things, to its ongoing high demand for employees with a higher education. As a result, the level of qualifications of new entrant employees and managers has increased significantly in recent years: at the end of 2020, 61 per cent of newly recruited employees had graduated from a university or a university of applied sciences or completed higher professional training.

Representation of employees

As a fair and responsible employer, it is important to us that employees have a body to whom they can turn should they encounter problems at work and which represents their interests vis-à-vis the Group Executive Board. The Representation of Employees (Arbeitnehmervertretung) at LLB's parent bank holds a regular dialogue with the Group Executive Board. The Representation of Employees has a say in various issues such as staff pension plans, rationalisation projects and staff retrenchment. It also represents the viewpoint of the employees in various working groups such as the Mobility Commission and the Working Atmosphere and Health Commission. The Group Executive Board is obliged to inform the Representation of Employees of all matters that are relevant to employees.

Personnel Pension Fund Foundation

In the reporting year, 707 employees of our corporate Group who work in Liechtenstein were covered by the retirement, life and disability insurance plans of the autonomous Personnel Pension Fund Foundation of Liechtensteinische Landesbank. The pension fund and its defined contribution scheme offer three attractive savings plans that go beyond the requirements of the law (Occupational Pension Act (OPA)). In addition, LLB's contributions as an employer amount to two-thirds of the financing of the fund.

To safeguard pension benefits, the Board of Trustees decided to reduce the pension conversion rate further to 4.82 per cent by 2027. In addition, the principle of sustainability was added as an investment criterion. As at the end of 2020, 64 per cent of the investment assets complied with the new LLB sustainability criteria. This proportion is to be steadily increased. The liquidity ratio increased in the reporting year to 110.5 per cent (2019: 108.1 %) thanks to a strong fourth quarter. The return on investment was approximately 4.2 per cent (2019: 8.2 %). The retirement assets of the active insured persons bore interest of 2 per cent as at the end of the year. The fluctuation reserve increased to CHF 34.3 million (2019: CHF 25.4 million). The Personnel Pension Fund Foundation of Liechtensteinische Landesbank is thus well positioned for the future.

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Young talents *












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of which SAQ certification costs in CHF thousands






* Includes all working students in master's studies, trainees with master's degree and direct entrants with bachelor's degree. All young talents have temporary employment contracts.