As in all countries of the world, GDP growth for 2023 in Switzerland will be limited due to the complex global geopolitical situation and is not expected to reach even 1%. Nevertheless, Switzerland remains a politically and economically reliable country that offers companies and employees a secure and consolidated socio-economic environment. So, it is not impossible to find jobs in Switzerland if you have the right skills.
The unemployment rate has risen slightly in recent years due to the Covid19 pandemic, but is now back at 2%, which means virtually full employment.
Jobs in Switzerland
According to numerous surveys, Switzerland is considered one of the best countries in the world to emigrate to work. However, the country’s institutions make the selection process for foreign applicants (especially non-EU citizens) quite difficult and complicated.
Therefore, the fact that you are an EU citizen is already a great advantage, because it is enough to find a company that wants to hire you and you will automatically receive your work permit. For non-EU citizens, on the other hand, the matter is complicated, and not a little. In this case, you will have to apply for a work visa and go through a whole series of lengthy and expensive bureaucratic procedures, which is why Swiss companies rarely hire non-EU citizens during this difficult time.
In addition, the number of work permits for non-EU workers is limited, with less than 10,000 work permits available annually, and the company must prove that it could not find Swiss or European applicants willing to fill the position. So, to have a good chance, you must be a qualified professional with proven experience or work in an area where there is a shortage of qualified personnel, such as the IT sector. .
In any case, you can find all the legislation for working in Switzerland on the government website
To find a job in Switzerland you need:
1 To speak the language of the canton you want to move to. In some large companies or multinationals, English may be sufficient, but smaller companies often require knowledge of the canton language. And since the canton that offers the most job opportunities is German, it goes without saying that knowledge of this language is a great advantage. Knowledge of other languages can also be an advantage.
2 Expand your circle of acquaintances. Do not be afraid to spend time on LinkedIn and build a network of contacts (experts, recruiters, etc.)
3 Arm yourself with patience, keep sending applications and do not get discouraged if the results are not immediate, because perseverance is one of the keys to success, considering that on average only 5% of companies respond to a CV. So be prepared to send many resumes every day.
Job search websites in Switzerland:
- Jobs.ch, website with many job offers
- Jobup, for French-speaking Canton
- Job scout, good website
- Job nzz, for German-speaking Canton
- Job winner, for German-speaking Canton
Most in-demand jobs in Switzerland
According to recent surveys, most jobs in 2022 will be in demand in finance, education, IT, construction and healthcare.
IT sector (developers, programmers, cybersecurity, etc.)
- Healthcare sector (doctors, nurses, physical therapists, etc.)
- Education sector (teachers, professors, etc.)
- Construction sector (bricklayers, carpenters, etc.)
- Finance sector – banks (accountants, etc.)
For all temporary or seasonal positions in the following areas, demand is greater than offer:
- Hospitality, (waiters, cooks, etc.)
- Domestic professions, (maids, drivers, cleaners, etc.)
- Agriculture, (livestock)
In these sectors, the number of vacancies is limited and competition is high. You should also know that in the hospitality industry, knowledge of German, English and French is often required. It is difficult to find job offers where accommodation and meals are included, and in any case this is deducted from the salary.
Work culture in Switzerland
The pillars of the Swiss work culture are:
- Punctuality. Even being a few minutes late is considered a sign of low attachment to work and lack of respect for colleagues; being late means wasting time for others, and that is intolerable for a Swiss. So if you want to make a good impression, you should arrive 10/15 minutes before the appointment.
- A well done job. The Swiss do not like it when someone works unprofessionally and tends to improvise or do sloppy work.
Switzerland is considered an avant-garde country with a strong direct democracy and one of the countries with the highest quality of life. The working world is still very traditional:
- It is still dominated by men. Women are generally employed in the service sector or do not work at all
- Swiss corporate culture is very hierarchical. Decisions are made from the top down, and although everyone has the opportunity to express their opinion, it is not obvious that it is taken into account
This work culture may change slightly depending on the canton you are in. In a German canton it is certainly stricter, while in an Italian canton it is more tolerant.
How to find a job in Switzerland, conclusion
Switzerland consists of 26 cantons, German is spoken in 19 cantons, French in 4 cantons and Italian in Ticino.
As we have seen above, finding a job in Switzerland depends on your qualifications and experience. You have to write your CV in the language of the canton and send it together with the letter of motivation by e-mail to the companies or to the employment agencies. If you are an EU citizen, you can also come to Switzerland and look for work.
One last point: if you find a job in Switzerland and have a family, if you want family reunification, you will have to prove that you can support the whole family, and with only one salary it is very difficult (but of course not impossible, it depends on the type of work).
In summary, if you are lucky enough to find a job in Switzerland, you will enjoy:
- Good wages overall
- Good quality of life
- Absence of racism
At the same time, however, keep in mind that workplace protections do not have the level of French or Austrian protections, and it is very easy for employers to fire employees.