Figures on SMEs: Historical development

The number of jobs is increasing slightly less rapidly for SMEs than for all commercial enterprises.

The number of SMEs (commercial enterprises) present in Switzerland (607,820) increased by 1.5% in 2021 compared to the previous year (2020: 598,772), showing a growth of 9.8% compared to 2011 (545,400). The number of jobs (3,099,937) increased by 2% over one year (2020: 3,035,739) and increased by 7.9% since 2011 (2,873,193).

The evolution over one year is the same when commercial enterprises of all sizes (+1.5% compared to 2020) are taken into account. A similar trend is observed for the workforce of all companies (+2.5% compared to 2020 and +9.9% compared to 2011).

Difficult historical comparisons

It should be noted that the method used by the Federal Statistical Office (FSO) to count the number of companies in Switzerland changed with the introduction of the new Structural Business Statistics (STATENT). It is impossible to directly compare the figures from the STATENT (since 2011) with those of the Federal Business Census, completed in 2001, 2005 and 2008.

However, as part of the first STATENT publication, the FSO applied an assessment model based on the new definitions and recalculated the data for 2005 and 2008. According to these calculations, the total number of enterprises in Switzerland increased by 3.6% from 2005 to 2008, and only 0.2% from 2008 to 2011. The number of full-time equivalent jobs increased by 7.6% from 2005 to 2008, and then by 4.3% from 2008 to 2011.

Source: Federal Statistical Office (FSO), Structural Statistics of Enterprises (STATENT), August 2023.


Last modification 01.12.2023

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