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«I expect &Go from myself and my colleagues.»

Angel Guirao, Head Motor Vehicle Insurances, Private Customers, has worked for Helvetia for over 28 years. In this interview he talks about what he has found inspiring about Helvetia for nearly 30 years, how he implements flexible working on a day-to-day basis, and what he thinks of &Go.

24 September 2018, text: Employer Branding, photo: Helvetia

A man standing laughing in a white room.
Angel Guirao feels at home at Helvetia – in the almost 30 years he’s worked at the company he was always satisfied in his tasks.

Who are you and what do you do at Helvetia? How did you get where you are today?

My name is Angel Guirao. I am Head of Motor Vehicle Insurances, Private Customers, and I've been with Helvetia since 1990 – nearly 30 years ago. I've been involved in almost every activity that Helvetia has gone through in the last 30 years, from deregulation, the integration of other companies and migrations to large and small IT, product and premium rate developments – absolutely everything. I was even here when Helvetia got its first PC. I've always been in the motor vehicles department, as that's the sector that has simply fascinated me since my first day. It's varied, there's always something going on, the market is extraordinarily interesting and very flexible. To put it simply, this is where it all happens!

Why have you stayed with Helvetia for such a long time?

That's easy: I've never found anything better! I feel at home here. Helvetia is a part of me, if that isn't too corny. I've been here for so long and I still feel at ease, so I can't imagine anything else. In nearly 30 years I've constantly been faced with new challenges. I've been given countless new tasks, and I've gradually managed to work my way up. It's very important, and fundamental as far as I'm concerned, that I always enjoyed the trust of my bosses and my employees, and I've found great satisfaction in what I do. Now I have an extremely interesting job, managing very inspiring and motivated employees. I've just never felt the need to change companies.

Can you tell us what your job is and explain what you do in just a few words?

With my 17 employees I manage the whole of Helvetia's private customers motor vehicle business. My duties include managing employees, motivating them and keeping them motivated, and ensuring that they make progress and enjoy their jobs. My employees and I also ensure that our products and rates remain attractive in the market, and that our processes are simple and clear.

What do your employees do?

We have different teams, one in St Gallen and one in Fribourg, responsible for underwriting and processing. They underwrite risks and review insurances and possible policy conditions. We also have a product development team that monitors the market, sets premium rates, develops ideas for new products and keeps IT posted. Well over 400,000 customers insure their motor vehicles with Helvetia. Our goal is to react to customer concerns, process them and ensure that customers receive their policies – all as rapidly as possible.

What does &Go mean for you in your day-to-day work at Helvetia?

I like the slogan: it stands for what I expect every day of myself and my employees. Standing still gets you nowhere, especially in the market that we work in. The entire motor vehicle market is &Go: it never stands still. That's why it is so important for us to remain flexible, never to stand still – and to retain our sense of curiosity. It's also important for us to have the courage to exploit our competencies to the full and push at the boundaries, always pragmatically, courageously and with an eye to the bottom line. That's why I like the campaign so much.

Why is &Go important and right for Helvetia?

The slogan can't be wrong. As an insurer we must be constantly in motion, and that's exactly what &Go means to me! We must keep our eyes on the road ahead, setting about the challenges that we face and mastering them. As managers we must also trust our own employees, and have the courage to call on them to act independently rather than standing in their way.

How do you put flexible working into practice on a daily basis?

It's not easy in my area. Many of my staff have general agencies permanently assigned to them, for whom they have to be available at certain times. These general agencies are our customers, and it's part of our job to be available to them. So flexible working hours aren't an entirely simple matter. We haven't yet found out how to implement it in our area, but we're working on it.


&Go is Helvetia's current campaign to position itself as a first-class employer. Find more information on Helvetia as an employer.

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