The OGBL is built democratically from the bottom up and is composed of professional syndicates and sections, to which are added the departments. The national bodies and organs of the OGBL are based on these structures. The members of the OGBL are automatically integrated into one of the professional syndicates according to the branch in which they work, to a section according to their place of residence and, according to their specific situation, to one of the departments.
All employees can become members of the OGBL, whatever their status is and independently of their origin, nationality, sex, political or religious convictions, insofar as they recognize, at the time of their individual affiliation, the statutes and the program of the OGBL. Women and men pensioners, apprentices, pupils and students can become members in the same capacity, as well as widows or widowers who are not professionally active and who continue the affiliation of their legal partner. All members ceasing their professional activity remain members of the union as long as they fulfill their statutory duties.
The professional syndicates preserve the collective interests of OGBL members in their workplace. They have tariff autonomy in their field, in accordance with the statutory provisions and in compliance with the resolutions of the National Committee and the Congress of the OGBL.
The sections represent the OGBL in all local affairs, in accordance with the provisions of the statutes and the directives of the National Committee. They are financially autonomous in the accomplishment of their missions. The departments defend the specific interests of young people (members up to the age of 35), pensioners, women, civil servants and employees of the state and municipalities, immigrants, disabled workers.
The Executive Committee discusses current affairs, decides on the actions of the OGBL on a national and international level within the framework of the decisions of the Congress and the National Committee, coordinates the activities of the professional syndicates, sections and departments, supervises the work of the central secretaries elected by the Congress as well as the financial and membership development, and takes decisions within the framework of its competences.
The Executive Board within the Executive Committee is composed of central secretaries. It determines the political and administrative competences of its members by means of an organization chart. It is responsible for implementing the decisions of the Executive Committee. It manages day-to-day business and is accountable to the Executive Committee. Overall coordination is the responsibility of the President.
The National Committee is the deliberative assembly which is in charge of directing the OGBL, in accordance with the decisions of the Congress and the provisions of the statutes. It is composed of honorary members and central secretaries and in particular elaborates the positions and the national and international activities of the OGBL, fixes the annual budget, decides on the management of the accounts and the balance sheet, determines the number of members of the Executive Board and furthermore elects the president from among the members of the Executive Board, as well as the vice-presidents from among the honorary members of the Executive Committee.
The Ordinary National Congress is the supreme instance of the OGBL. It meets every 5 years, is composed of representatives of the professional syndicates, sections, departments and members of the National Committee and decides on the activity of the OGBL bodies, the membership fees, the statutes (available in FR and DE) and the amendments thereto, the OGBL action program (available in FR and DE) and the directives relating to the activity of all the OGBL bodies. The honorary members of the National Committee and the honorary members of the Executive Committee of the OGBL are confirmed by the Congress. The central secretaries, among whom are the members of the Executive Board, are elected by the Congress on the proposal of the National Committee. The Supervisory Board is also elected by the Congress.