Units.

Zentralbahn employees are organised into five units. Despite the division into different units, cooperation is extremely important. This is the only way to ensure the trains can run safely and punctually every day.

Management / Staff / Security and Corporate Development. 

Overall operational responsibility lies with the Management Board. It is responsible for achieving the company’s objectives, representing its interests internally and externally and reporting to the Board of Directors. The Staff unit supports the Management Board, prepares business transactions and works on company projects. The Safety and Corporate Development department is responsible for safety and quality management, the innovation process and business analysis.  

Production and Rolling Stock.

The largest unit at Zentralbahn is the Production and Rolling Stock organisational unit. Maintenance work is carried out in the modern workshops in Meiringen, Stansstad and Innertkirchen. The locomotive crew ensures safe and punctual operations. Production Planning and Fleet Management ensure the efficient use of vehicles. The Procurement and Logistics department manages materials and services in a timely and cost-efficient manner.  

Infrastructure.  

The Infrastructure unit is responsible for the construction, management and maintenance of rail installations, train stations and real estate. Operations Management directs trains along the network and keeps customers informed at stations and stops. 

Finance and IT.  

The Finance sub-unit is responsible for processing and monitoring income, expenditure and investments. Risk Management identifies and assesses risks and their potential impact. IT provides an efficient and user-friendly ICT infrastructure and is responsible for IT security.  

Human Resources.

Human Resources focuses on the needs and requirements of employees. Together with managers, this unit provides orientation, encourages appreciation and promotes entrepreneurial action. Values are central to this approach and form the basis for a good corporate culture. 

Marketing and Sales.  

Marketing and Sales handle all customer needs. The staff in the Travel Centres and the train crew are the first points of contact for customers and important ambassadors for the customer focus. The service offer and timetable are planned in this unit and negotiated with the commissioning parties – the Cantons and the Swiss Confederation. Marketing of services and all internal and external communications are the responsibility of Marketing and Sales. 

Management Board. 

v. l. n. r.: Gerhard Züger, Gunthard Orglmeister, Sonja Theiler, Michael Schürch, Nicolas Ludin, Patrick Schaller 

Every day, they work with all employees to further develop Zentralbahn:

  • Gerhard Züger, Head of Production and Rolling Stock 
  • Gunthard Orglmeister, Head of Infrastructure 
  • Sonja Theiler, Head of Human Resources and QSE 
  • Michael Schürch, Managing Director 
  • Nicolas Ludin, Head of Marketing and Sales 
  • Patrick Schaller, Head of Finance and IT 

Board of Directors. 

v. l. n. r.: Daniel Wyler, Peter Flück, Michel Berchtold, Toni Häne, Michèle Blöchliger, Urban Ehret, Fredy Summermatter, Philippe Gauderon

They set out the strategies for the future: 

  • Michel Berchtold, Representative of SBB 
  • Michèle Blöchliger, Representative of the Canton of Nidwalden 
  • Urban Ehret, Representative of SBB 
  • Peter Flück, Representative of the Swiss Confederation 
  • Philippe Gauderon, Representative of SBB 
  • Toni Häne, Chair of the Board of Directors 
  • Daniel Wyler, Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors, Representative of the Canton of Obwalden 
  • Fredy Summermatter, Secretary to the Board of Directors 

Interviews with the Management Board.

Michael Schürch, Managing Director

  • Railway Traffic Technician 
  • Dipl. Business Administration FH 
  • SKU Executive Management Program (CAS) 

What motivates me as the Managing Director?

“Having overall operational responsibility for a railway company the size of Zentralbahn, with all its aspects of mobility and technology, is simultaneously very exciting, challenging and fulfilling. With regional roots, short decision-making paths and a family environment, the level of efficiency is very high.”

What kind of work do I love?

“It is a great pleasure to improve the already very well structured and effective Zentralbahn even further by making the right decisions.”

What’s important to me when interacting with others?

“Involving employees at all levels is the key to a successful and sustainable company. So for me, conversations across all levels are critical. And finally, everything is easier with a daily pinch of humour.”

What do I value?

“In collaboration with my colleagues on the Management Board and employees, I’m promoting healthy progress for Zentralbahn. Our constant goal is to ensure that our customers are well taken care of and delivered to their destination safely and reliably. We want to become the pearl among railways in Switzerland and truly astound Zentralbahn customers with our quality.”

A glimpse into my private life...

“Time spent with my family is what relaxes me. I play sport to recharge my batteries and find inspiration and new ideas. I relax in nature, by the lake and enjoy the views in the mountains.”

Nicolas Ludin, Head of Marketing and Sales

  • Executive MBA, Strategic Management – Leadership
  • Business Economist FH 
  • Federal Dipl. Hôtelier - Restaurateur HF 

What motivates me as a member of the Management Board?

“Every day, I am motivated to take on responsibility in my varied role, to analyse and optimise complex business relationships. As part of the Zentralbahn family, I am able to further develop the organisation and services for our customers in order to strengthen public transport. The interaction between employees, customers and economic factors is both challenging and enriching.”

What kind of work do I love?

“Every day, it’s a pleasure for me to work with my team to succeed in putting a smile on our customers’ faces before, during and after their trip and to impress them with our services and products. Daily collaboration with committed employees who put their heart and soul into Zentralbahn makes it a wonderful job.”

What’s important to me when interacting with others?

“Personal interaction and open, respectful, direct dialogue. Other perspectives broaden our horizon.”

What do I value in my unit?

“Appreciative cooperation between all units and departments is important to me. We work together to achieve tangible results and create new, needs-based services that help Zentralbahn and our customers to move forward together.  

 

This strengthens customer satisfaction. A great team, open communication and our culture of feedback help us to carry out our daily work.”

A glimpse into my private life...

“Quality ingredients from my kitchen and cellar are the perfect combination for a cosy evening and interesting conversations. What I find fascinating and inspiring about the art of cooking is that it is so culturally diverse.”

Gunthard Orglmeister, Head of Infrastructure

  • Training and Further Education, Activities
  •  Dipl. Electrical Engineer (TU Vienna)  
  • DES en systèmes d’information (Uni Geneva)
  • Dr.sc.techn. (ETH Zurich) 
  • MAS General Management (Uni Bern) 

What motivates me as a member of the Management Board?

“I’ve been a fan of railways since I was a child. It makes me incredibly happy to be able to contribute to the operations and ongoing development of a railway. When I’m travelling on a Zentralbahn line, I often think how lucky I am to be able to work on this fantastically beautiful route.”

What kind of work do I love?

“I’m happiest when I can achieve something for Zentralbahn by contributing ideas or speaking with the authorities or other stakeholders.”

What’s important to me when interacting with others?

“Trust-based relationships. I want people to be able to rely on me and I want to be able to rely on my fellow human beings. We can only get things done by working together as a team.”

What do I value in my unit?

“Well-maintained infrastructure is the basis for safe and efficient rail transport. Modern technologies support our activities. Much of our rail infrastructure has been stable for decades – but I’m convinced that new approaches and technologies will take us further so we can offer our customers the perfect travel experience.”

A glimpse into my private life...

“I’m married, have four teenage children and live in the most beautiful former railway signalman’s house in the canton of Uri, so I also get to watch many trains pass by my home and dream of travel to faraway countries.”

Patrick Schaller, Head of Finance and IT 

What motivates me as a member of the Management Board?

The combination of expertise from the world of finance with the challenges of public transport companies is very exciting. It’s a pleasure to meet motivated employees every day. It’s always inspiring to witness their commitment to the further development of public transport along such a fantastic train route.

What kind of work do I love?

Quickly recording and analysing economic correlations to find new, more effective solutions for Zentralbahn is what drives me.

What’s important to me when interacting with others?

I believe that an open and collegial culture is the basis for achieving goals together. We support each other and look forward to implementing improvements.

What do I value in my unit?

As a support unit, our goal is to provide a high-quality IT infrastructure and the basis for financial management. We focus on creating an economic overview and on the useful application of IT technology and data. We want to be part of the pearl among Switzerland’s railways and enjoy making our contribution.

A glimpse into my private life ...

I really enjoy family time at home or in nature. Moderate exercise in the mountains or on the lake balances out my rather sedentary office routine.

Sonja Theiler, Head of Human Resources and QSE

  • Dipl. Business Administration HF 
  • • Business Excellence EFQM 
  • • MAS in HRM 

What motivates me as a member of the Management Board?

“Zentralbahn is important to me. That’s why I find it very fulfilling when I can contribute to the sustainable success of Zentralbahn with my mind, heart and hands and show employees what the future holds.”

What kind of work do I love?

“I love working for and with our employees. I’m particularly proud of the employees that I’m able to support from the moment they join the company and as they develop within the company. It makes me very happy to have played a part in their careers."

What’s important to me when interacting with others?

“Transparent, respectful and trust-based cooperation with a focus on the success of Zentralbahn and no lack of humour. It’s refreshing to be able to laugh in between dealing with difficult topics.”

What do I value in my unit?

“We offer our employees a family environment with modern working time models. We promote the knowledge and skills of our employees and develop their potential in a targeted manner. For me, a well-networked and forward-looking HR team forms the basis for this approach.”

A glimpse into my private life ...

“I like to get out and about on my bike to clear my head while in harmony with nature and enjoying the combination of sport, freedom and relaxation. This helps to keep my life happy and balanced.”

Gerhard Züger, Head of Production and Rolling Stock 

  • Mechanical Technician TS 
  • Quality System Manager 
  • Business Economist SGMI 
  • Executive MBA 
  • Business Excellence EFQM 

What motivates me as a member of the Management Board?

“As a small but high quality railway, Zentralbahn has to assert itself on the global stage. I am committed to the sustainable development of Zentralbahn with partnerships and innovative ideas. Among other things, Zentralbahn will explore new technological options.”

What kind of work do I love?

“Questioning existing processes and standards and creating and trying out new ideas together with the team.”

What’s important to me when interacting with others?

“I can only achieve success with a motivated team, which I can build through trust and appreciation. Employees should be able to provide constructive criticism, so that problems can be addressed and we can continue to develop together.”

What do I value in my unit?

“Safety, punctuality and efficiency are important to me and my team is committed to these values every day. Working together, we create high-quality, reliable connections for our customers. We focus on the continuous further development of our unit, for example, with the appropriate use of digital tools.”

A glimpse into my private life ...

“To balance out the world of trains, I relax in my workshop by restoring old English motorbikes (“Ladies”) and riding my Norton through remote Swiss countryside.”

Organisational chart.