Compensation Committee activities
The Compensation Committee has an annual agenda to ensure that important reviews take place at the appropriate times throughout the year. The Compensation Committee also commits time to executive sessions and conducts periodic self-assessments to ensure its continued high level of effectiveness. It held six meetings during 2015 and provided an update to the Board of Directors on topics discussed, decisions made and items for approval after each of these meetings. A summary of the topics dealt with by the Compensation Committee during the year is shown below.
High-level overview of topics discussed
Variable compensation for the Group
At Swiss Re, the compensation cycle begins in December and runs through to March/April of the following year. The Compensation Committee oversees each stage of the process, starting with deciding on the variable compensation pool for the prior performance year, reviewing these decisions, and setting targets for the upcoming year.
Outlined below is an overview of the topics discussed during 2015:
Items relating to the past performance cycle Meeting
- Performance assessment process and proposal of the variable compensation pool January and February
- Approval of performance factors for deferred compensation awards February and April
- Review of the decisions made during the prior compensation cycle June
Items relating to the upcoming performance cycle
- Review and recommendation of the LPP pool for the upcoming year January and February
- Setting of the performance targets for variable compensation for the upcoming year February
Compensation and performance of the Group EC
The review of the Group EC compensation follows the same cycle as that for the Group. Again, the Compensation Committee is fully involved through all stages of the process, and all decisions are taken by the Compensation Committee and the Board of Directors.
- Performance assessment of the prior year January and February
- Approval of individual compensation proposals for the Group EC1 February and April
- Review and confirm reference companies for the Group EC compensation benchmarking April
- Analysis of Group EC members’ compensation relative to external peers June
Compensation of the Board of Directors
The compensation of the Board of Directors is reviewed annually and the Compensation Committee formulates proposals for the approval of the Board of Directors accordingly2.
- Fees of the Board of Directors for the following compensation period February and April
- Approval of the Board of Directors compensation policy April
- Analysis of compensation practices for non-executive directors relative to the market September
Compensation principles and plans
- Review and update of the LPP principles February
- Annual benefits review June
- Review of the Compensation Policy September
- Review and update of the VAI plan January, February and April
Compliance and regulatory
The Compensation Committee spends time reviewing materials relating to regulatory or statutory reporting. In addition, the structure of the Compensation Committee and its advisors is reviewed on an ongoing basis.
- Review and endorsement of the Compensation Report December, January and February
- Compliance and regulatory developments All meetings
- Review of the role and mandate of external advisors June
1 Within the maximum aggregate amount of compensation approved by the AGM and the supplementary amount available for changes in the Group EC as per the Articles of Association respectively.
2 Within the maximum aggregate amount of compensation approved by the AGM.