You and your colleagues know what the most important issues are at your workplace. By being actively involved in a trade union, you can have more influence on what happens and have a say on issues such as reorganisations, salary negotiations and managerial appointments. You don’t need any previous knowledge or experience, just commitment.
In our short film ”Influence your workplace”, elected representatives talk about why they have chosen to get involved in the work of the union.
Are you not receiving information about what is going on at work? Do reorganisations, changes in the business or changes to your employee benefits happen suddenly and without warning?
Having collective agreements and elected representatives in place means you have fantastic opportunities to create a better workplace.
With collective agreements, the employer is obliged to negotiate with the union before making decisions about major changes in the workplace. This gives employees the opportunity to influence what goes on in the workplace by contributing opinions, ideas and suggestions before the employer makes a decision.
When we have elected representatives in the workplace, the employer negotiates with representatives of the employees who know what issues are important in your particular workplace. You have knowledge of the work and the employees that the employer only acquires through dialogue with you.
To be become a union representative at your workplace, you need to be elected by the members of a local association or be appointed by the union to be its local contact person.
If there is already a local association at your workplace, you should contact your local elected representatives. You can find their contact details in the My pages section of the website.
If you are interested in getting involved in the work of the trade union at your workplace, you will find information and support on the Saco unions’ website akademikerforening.se. The material there is primarily aimed at people who work in the private sector.
You are also very welcome to contact our recruitment and development officers at the Engineers of Sweden central office by email, by phone or by using the form below.
If you work in the state sector, you can contact Saco-S.
Local trade union work varies depending on the circumstances at each workplace. There are two ways to organise local trade union representation, either through a local association or through contact persons. In both cases, the local union representatives are regarded as elected representatives.
This representative structure is suitable for larger workplaces with more than 10 –15 members.
The annual members' meeting is the local association's highest decision-making body, and this is where the members decide every year how the association should be run and vote for who will sit on the local association board.
The board consists of at least 3 people, who have the roles of chair, vice chair and secretary. In addition to these, more members may be elected. The board members are elected representatives of the association and allocate tasks internally. The main role of the chair is to convene and lead the work of the board. In addition to board assignments, you can be a meeting official, a member of the nomination committee, a health and safety officer or an employee representative on the company board.
Local associations may have different name and structures, depending on the sector.
In the private sector, all Saco unions cooperate to give us even greater combined strength in the workplace. These associations are called akademikerföreningar, (academics' associations), and represent all employees at the workplace who are members of a Saco union.
The trade union responsible for the collective agreement at the workplace is the contact union for the association and helps with advice, training and other support.
You can read more about the Saco unions at the Saco website (in Swedish)
Within the municipal and regional sector there are two types of association:
You can read more about this on the AkademikerAlliansen website (in Swedish)
In the state sector, all Saco associations cooperate within the organisation Saco-S.
A local Saco-S association represents all employees at the workplace who are members of a Saco union. The association appoints a contact union that helps the association with advice and support.
You can read more about this on the Saco-S website (in Swedish)
At workplaces with fewer than 10–15 members, or where fewer than 3 members wish to be on the board of the local association, 1 or 2 contact persons can be appointed.
A contact person has the same status as an elected representative and represents the members in local trade union matters in the same way as a local association. The difference is that the contact person is appointed by the union to represent the members directly, i.e. not via a member-run local association.
For more information, fill in the form and we will get back to you as soon as we can.
You can also contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 08-6138000.
Our recruitment and development officers will help you if you are interested in forming a new local association or becoming a contact person. You can also get advice on statutes, annual meetings and other matters related to the union assignment.