Our employees and our u-blox family “Better Together” culture

Explanation of the material topic and its boundaries

We take our responsibility seriously to provide all our employees, located across 33 sites worldwide, with a safe, healthy, and equitable workplace where they can thrive and share in our success. The employee section of this sustainability report relates to how the u-blox Executive Committee (EC) and Global and Local Human Resource teams deliver on this crucial responsibility.

Our approach to our employees

We have a very strong and supportive “Better Together” culture in our u-blox DNA. This has become even more apparent during these challenging times and was highlighted by our employees in our recent engagement survey.

Throughout u-blox, employees display a strong emotional contract with the company. This was demonstrated throughout the past year as everyone pulled together and went above and beyond to support our customers and each other.

“There is a strong collaborative and innovative spirit across the business, nurturing a thriving start-up culture at u-blox – 25 years after our founding.”

Agile, lean decision making

Our leadership team empowers employees to make their own decisions, whether on a day-to-day business or in an agile working environment encouraging employee development and ownership throughout u-blox. In addition, our leadership team members balance employee empowerment with knowing when an employee needs direct support either from them or from other team members.

Innovation and start-up mentality

Twenty-five years after our founding, despite the significant growth of our global footprint, there is a strong collaborative and innovative spirit across the business, nurturing a thriving start-up culture at u-blox.


Evidence shows that more diverse workforces are more productive, which is good for u-blox, our customers, and our shareholders. We have equality policies covering all aspects of our operations, including recruitment, pay, training, and development. Our HR team actively supports all parts of the business by providing practical help and training to colleagues to ensure we treat everyone equally.

Gender Diversity

Like many engineering businesses, we have a gender imbalance, which we also see at universities where only one in five engineering degrees are earned by women. We seek to address our gender imbalance with a combination of our recruitment, training, mentoring, and retention strategies, including working with educational institutions and communications programs targeting potential candidates.

We closely monitor the gender balance at all levels of our business. At the end of 2022, 17% of our global workforce was female. 20% of our Executive and Management positions are held by female colleagues. Positions requiring an engineering degree have low levels of gender diversity proportional to the current situation at universities. However, in administrative roles, women hold the majority of the positions. At the Board of Directors level, two out of seven members are women. We encourage all of our employees, regardless of gender, to actively engage with their peers in fora and other external industry association roles to help take IoT forward.


Employee retention

Employee retention is a strategic goal at u-blox, and we have a wide variety of measures in place to support it. For example, we implemented structural salary and benefits adjustments in different countries along with other corporate, functional, and site measures. Besides tracking key performance indicators showing our numbers of leavers, both voluntary and dismissals, we conduct regular development and career discussions as well as objective reviews. With such insight, we define career progress measures. We have outlined below some of our actions to support employee retention:

Diversity and inclusion

Our culture reflects the communities we work in and the markets we serve. Across u-blox, currently at 33 sites, with staff representing 70 nationalities, we have a strong, inclusive culture where diversity is valued by all. Discrimination and bullying are not tolerated, and everyone is treated with dignity and respect. u-blox has a zero tolerance policy for any form of harassment or abusive behavior.

Grievance procedure

Grievance procedures are also described in our global employment policy as well as in our local policies. Grievance processes can differ from country to country depending on local labor laws and are taken very seriously. Progress is monitored tightly and treated with the highest level of confidentiality.

Our corporate values and identity guidelines, which are provided to all employees, help to ensure that we have a culture that nurtures diversity and inclusion regardless of race, gender, ethnic origin, age, religion, disability, family status, social origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. As a global company, we believe our people and culture should reflect the diversity found in the communities we work in and the markets we serve. Further, we believe diversity drives innovation and efficiency and helps us to better serve our customers and our industry.

Our headquarters in Thalwil, Switzerland, is a good example, where our employees represent 35 different citizenships. Additionally, the majority of our development teams have members in more than one physical site, often in several countries. Collaboration is facilitated through virtual meetings,and a unique training program for line managers of multi-site teams has been developed to support international leadership in a multicultural environment.

Open-door culture

We work hard to nurture an open-door policy throughout the business. Our flat organizational structure promotes open communication at all levels to listen to and act upon employee needs.

An open information culture

Since the foundation of our company, we have fostered an open information culture and keep all staff updated every month in detail about the course of our business, the progress of our projects, and the status of our organization. We treat all our colleagues with respect and trust.

Communication culture

As of the end of 2022, we trained just over half of our employees globally in Nonviolent Communication (NVC) and significantly exceeded our company's target. This corporate training helps us improve our collaboration by speaking up for things that are important to us (honesty) and listening carefully, without judgment, to what is important to others (empathy). Such a communication culture forms a strong foundation for inclusion and unleashes the power of diversity.

Freedom of association

u-blox employees have the right to associate freely as per local regulations. These rights are specifically clarified in our local employment policies.

Career development       

u-blox recognizes that career development will mean different things to different people and perhaps be different at other points in their lives. As a result, we have designed a career development strategy that caters to a broad range of employee developmental needs to help them grow and reach their individual goals. We want all u-blox employees to shift their focus from past performance and look forward with emphasis on their personal development and growth for better performance.

In regular career development discussions, employees discuss and define jointly with their line manager their personal development needs and interests while addressing their career ambitions and progress. Alongside our core training, we offer flexible, professional development opportunities for everyone in the business, including courses and material from selected internal and external providers and training developed in-house, unique to u-blox.

In 2022, we added to our recently implemented e-learning library more than 20,000 new courses, and more than 2,300 were completed throughout the year.”

Training and knowledge sharing

Since we implemented our learning management system and e-learning strategy at u-blox, our employees have access to 270 modules, most of them created internally by subject matter experts and tailored to share the company's specific knowledge.

With our learning strategy, our training activities are centrally logged. The system enables managers to assign training to employees and those employees to track their progress. Simultaneously it allows the company to report in detail on specific training targets like regular corporate training such as Code of Conduct, Communication, Management, and Safety and Security training. Additionally, the system supports u-blox by identifying and recognizing experts in particular areas. We have also established a number of cross-functional teams to support knowledge sharing and provide employees with a broader scope of u-blox initiatives and roles.

With the implementation of a globally renowned e-learning library and platform, we are investing in the personal development of all our employees. In 2022 we had 270 tailored modules on this learning management system specific to
u-blox learning.

In 2022, we added to our recently implemented e-learning library more than 20,000 new courses, and more than 2,300 were completed throughout the year. In addition, more training tailored to the career paths of employees will be added in 2023.

This modern learning experience is personalized, thanks to data-driven recommendations. As a result, our employees can use and apply learning according to their needs and personal growth interests. u-blox is building a digital learning ecosystem that enables learning to happen anytime, anywhere. With this strategic approach and focus on digital learning, we are building a learning organization that also reduces our carbon footprint.

Investment in our future talent

u-blox offers an apprenticeship program at headquarters and internships throughout the year for students and early careers across our sites. These programs are very successful.

Employee engagement survey

In 2021, we shared the results of our latest employee engagement survey. Over 75% of employees participated in the survey. We are very pleased that 94% of the respondents confirmed being satisfied with their overall working conditions and working environment and that 92% confirmed being satisfied with u-blox as an employer.

In addition, every site and department has developed specific measures in accordance with the engagement survey results for their area, e.g., by implementing a dedicated department communication channel or adapting certain benefits.

With the implementation of an employee experience and success platform in 2023, we will have quarterly surveys and pulse checks to increase the engagement and development of our employees.


Work-life balance

We hire people who are passionate about what they do, but we do not want their work to take over their lives. Alongside their annual leave allowance, all employees are contractually entitled to time off to care for dependents and other special reasons according to local legislation. At u-blox, we support further types of leave beyond the legal requirements whenever possible without disrupting business continuity. In different countries and in line with local regulations and contractual possibilities, we also offer up to two months of unpaid leave to our employees for their private activities and development.

Similarly, many of our employees have the possibility to reduce their working time if they need more time for family matters or to further their education related to their professional activity at u-blox.

As well, different local benefits across our 33 sites support a variety of sports and leisure activities for our people.  

With our 2021 engagement survey, we addressed our employees’ expectations and needs. Due to the experience of the pandemic, the vast majority appreciated the opportunity to work more flexibly from home. Consequently, effective September 2021, we implemented a new Remote Work Guideline - a flexible hybrid work model whereby employees can work up to 40% from home. The new flexible model is another significant contribution to supporting our employees’ work-life balance with less commuting and a positive impact on our carbon footprint.

Types of employment

As a knowledge driven company with a unique in-house innovation rate, it is critical for our organization to limit the use of non-regular employment to a very low level. 

Types of employment


Employees with permanent work contracts


Employees with temporary work contracts


Directly employed workforce


Not directly employed workforce


With permanent work contracts, we also believe in giving our people stability in their lives and work. That’s also why the vast majority of those working for u-blox are permanent employees.

Pay and benefits

Appealing employment packages with equal pay based on the job grade is another important part of our strategic aim to attract and retain the best people. All positions are graded using the Mercer Universal Position Code. In addition, we benchmark our salaries using an external provider to ensure we remain an enticing employer for the very best people.

With the recent remarkable inflation rate, benchmarking salaries can be challenging. As a result, and to have accurate data, u-blox has adopted a policy of data triangulation where we always source three sets of data for salary benchmarking purposes. 

Gender pay equality

In December 2018, the Swiss Federal Government adopted an amendment to the Gender Equality Act, which entered into force in July 2020. This amendment resulted in all Swiss companies with 100 or more employees being required to carry out a wage equality analysis by the end of June 2021.

u-blox carried out this analysis of the key data for employees based in Switzerland as of January 31, 2021, utilizing the “Logib” standard analysis tool provided by the Swiss Federal Government. This analysis was then audited by Revipro AG, Thalwil, in October 2021. In November 2021, we received the final report back with a good result: u-blox AG fully complies with the requirement of gender pay equity in Switzerland.

According to the Logib standard analysis model, there would be a well-founded presumption of wage discrimination if the wage analysis reveals a gender-specific wage difference that is not explained by objective factors and is statistically significantly greater than 5%.

The analysis considers the standardized qualifications, job-related factors, level of operational competence, and professional position. As a result of this analysis, u-blox AG female employees earn, on average 3.1% less than their male colleagues. This value is below the 5% tolerance threshold.

It remains our goal, as before, to treat all colleagues fairly and equally by addressing any difference in the annual Grading & Salary review.

Sharing success and celebrating together!

At u-blox employees share our business success and growth with a new profit sharing Company Performance Bonus and an Employee Share Option Program. In 2023, we will launch a new long term incentive program which allows our employees to participate even more in the business success of u-blox.

We regularly celebrate our teamwork and success with annual company events at each site several times per year.

Health and safety

It is our duty to safeguard the health and safety of every u-blox employee worldwide at work. u-blox employees undertake health and safety training as part of their onboarding process. They are also personally responsible for maintaining safety, security, health, and environmental protection in the workplace relating to their own duties to the best of their knowledge, ability, and experience.

Our global Health & Safety Manager defined global Health & Safety guidelines in 2022 to be rolled out in 2023, including a global health & safety structure with the respective responsibilities, targets, and objectives. Several programs and training have been rolled out to raise awareness and be prepared for incidents. Progress is monitored, and a reporting system has been established.

Health & Safety activities in 2022:

  • Regular local Health & Safety training is conducted at all sites according to the local rules and regulations
  • Each u-blox site has a team of dedicated First Aid responders trained and equipped to support the health and safety of our employees in case of any onsite emergency
  • u-blox understands the importance of an ergonomic workplace and has a policy in place to provide our staff with the individual ergonomic support they require
  • On-demand webinars on personal health, resilience, and well-being are available to all staff, as are virtual yoga drop-in sessions

We also encourage our employees to bring potential health and safety issues to our attention, and we respond openly to any concerns raised. In 2022, we were pleased to report no serious work-related injuries or work-related illnesses.

2022 Sustainability Report