Archive | Applying for jobs

Tags: CVs, HR staff, interview preparation, job applications, job interview, jobs switzerland, telephone interview, work experience, workplace Switzerland

Job Applications – Evolution in the Swiss Marketplace

Posted on 23 October 2009 by PCT

The economic slowdown in Switzerland has given rise to changes in the job search process. As a result of fewer recruitment advertisements with job opportunities, HR staff at employers have tightened their requirements for candidates responding to job vacancies.

Job seekers all know that making the cut of CV selection is a key step and that recruiters typically spend only a few minutes – sometimes only a few seconds—scanning each dossier.

More than ever, it’s important that when responding to a job offer, the link between your response and the job offer is clear and evident to the recruiter. Do your work experience and your education should obviously correspond to the criteria in the job advertisement? Is your professional experience compatible with the company’s culture?
At this stage, often half of the CVs and dossiers received are discarded.

To maximize the job seeker’s chances of getting the maximum attention from HR he should take the requisite care on his motivation letter. Put out front in concise and clear argument the elements of your career which match up with the position being offered, with results and figures if necessary (for instance in a sales management job vacancy).
Avoid talking about your career objectives if they don’t align to the job being proposed.

The second important phase is the telephone call from the recruiter for clarifications and setting up an appointment. HR staff appreciate candidates ready to react rapidly. Being unavailable for an in-depth interview for weeks to come is a good way to drastically reduce your chances of being offered the job.

The interview, if one gets that far, is crucial and the goal is clear. Before the interview, evaluate your interest and your motivation for the job, be clear about your availability and notice period, think well in advance about your salary expectations and if relevant test appropriately your language skills. Most importantly, prepare in advance for the likely questions you will be asked about your professional career and experience and how you will respond.

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Jobs for Young I.T. Professionals in Switzerland

Posted on 16 October 2007 by ThomasP

Professionals and leaders in the fields of I.T. –information technologies– information systems and telecommunications report that in Switzerland talent in the sector is drying up, unable to follow demand, and that salaries are skyrocketing.

At the GRI (Groupe Romande Informatique) a professional organization for the I.T. sector in the French speaking part of Switzerland, officials are worried that there are not enough I.T. professionals being produced by the Swiss school system.

According to a study made public today, 57% of computer professionals in Switzerland are over 40 years of age. Only 11% are under 29 years of age.

The president of the GRI says that the aging of the population of specialists coupled with the drying up of resources in the I.T. sector has contributed to a strong rise in salaries, now estimated at CHF 121,000 / year on average for the sector.

The schools are having difficulty filling up their I.T. classes since the explosion of the internet bubble in 2001. And yet, this is a fascinating sector to be working in, says the organization’s president – “the field encompasses programming and software development, analysis, team management. It’s a multidimensional field touching on numerous domains and stimulating an intellectual curiosity.”

Admittedly, the president of the GRI is a non-neutral observer. The GRI’s objective is to make youth sensitive to I.T. and encourage them to enter the field so that the talent pool will be replenished. In Switzerland, currently 22% of women work in I.T. and the GRI would like to see the percentage rise to 40%.

The shortage of I.T. professionals in Switzerland is creating abundant opportunities for foreign professionals to find jobs in Switzerland.

2008 has been declared the year of I.T. in Switzerland with diverse presentations and exhibits and media coverage toward the goal of encouraging adolescents in the age range of 13-18 to pursue studies in Information Technologies and Telecommunications.

The campaign will be sponsored in part by the ICT Switzerland which is the Swiss governmental organization that specializes in information technologies and is under the SWICO.

Information about the above can be found on the two websites and

The annual study on salaries undertaken by Swiss ICT and GRI for 2007 was made across 240 companies and 20,000 professionals working in the sector. The study concluded that the average annual salary, now at CHF 121,000/year, had risen approximately 3.5% over 2006.

Over 18 sectors reflected in the I.T. branch study, the chemical sector’s I.T. professionals were 13% above the I.T. sector average, and the retail sector was 15% below average. As a rule, university education (i.e. an engineering degree) puts one into a bracket roughly 15%-25% above the average.

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Lack of Specialists in Switzerland on the Job Market

Posted on 25 April 2007 by info

According to a survey just made public by, nearly 60% of large Swiss companies are planning 10 or more new job recruitments. One in five of the companies surveyed responded they would be hiring for at least 50 new positions.

One thousand of the largest Swiss companies took part in the survey and the results indicate that opportunities for job seekers in professional fields are increasing. In parallel the survey found that the number of specialists in a variety of job fields is shrinking. The phenomenon has resulted in more and more companies recruiting abroad. More than a third of the surveyed companies indicated having accorded large emphasis on international recruitment in 2006 for its Swiss jobs and two-thirds of Swiss companies indicated that they would continue to recruit internationally for their open positions and career opportunities in Switzerland.

Candidates looking for employment in Switzerland and job seekers wishing to relocate to Switzerland or change jobs to another Swiss employer should look at the popular job search websites like jobwinner, monster, jobup, jobpilot, topjobs, qual, executivesearch, and many others. You can apply for work in Switzerland directly online through one of these websites.

The role of the internet in Swiss job recruitment has continued to grow. Seven out of ten employment offers are published on the web and half appear on recruitment websites.

From the point of view of job seekers, over 40% found employment via the internet. Swiss employment websites such as jobup, topjobs, adecco, monster, and executive-search cater to the recruitment and professional job placement market. The proportion of employment in Switzerland and job exchanges that is internet-based continue to grow but there remains a significant, though minor, component of Swiss job openings which are advertised in printed media.

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Finding Employment in Switzerland

Posted on 23 April 2007 by info

Those trying to find work in Switzerland — Job seekers from abroad– have many options for finding employment in Switzerland.

Are you looking for a job in Switzerland ?

The international organizations around the United Nations, of which there are nearly 20, are all Switzerland-based employers for which no work permit is necessary. And most have websites on which they post their vacancies on a weekly basis. W-i-S also periodically posts excerpts of these job offers.

For the rest of the job market, there are many ways to find a job in Switzerland :

1) Consult the newspapers (almost all of which are now online): job offers (offres d’emploi – Stellenmarkt)
are in the classifieds area of the dailies (usually printed on Wednesdays or the weekend), or weeklies. However, often interesting advertisements for jobs and other employment offers

can be found in specialized trade magazines. There are regular advertisements for offers and Swiss career opportunities in Le Temps, 24heures and Tagesanzeiger.

2) From the Internet: there are many online recruitment websites (site web d’emploi – Jobsbörsen) which permit tailor-made job-searches. One can look for a job selecting the sector and region where one wants to find work. The most popular Swiss employment websites are monster, jobup, topjobs, jobpilot, and jobwinner, jobscout24. Executive and high end professional jobs are concentrated on websites like executive search and

3) Employment agencies: Recruitment agencies play a key role in the employment in Switzerland and the Swiss job market. Most agencies however prefer to work only with candidates holding a valid work permit. Agencies cannot obtain a work permit: only employers can do this.

4) Spontaneous applications: Sometimes the most successful strategy for finding a job is to send your c.v. and an unsolicited application to the specific companies where you would like to work. You can do this often via the company’s website. Be sure to address your application to the individual responsible for recruitment or the manager of the HR department (Directeur de Ressources Humaines – Personalabteilungsleite). Some personnel departments stock these applications and when jobs openings occur they look at their c.v.s on file before advertising the position and contacting an employment agncy or recruiter. One can find a list of the 2000 largest Swiss companies in Top 2000,

5) EU citizens have the right to look for work in Switzerland and can search for a job for up to 3 months. In order to spend more time in the country looking for employmentt, one needs to apply for a residence permit for an additional 3 months. EU citizens have many options for finding a job in Switzerland not available to other nationalities.

For highly skilled professional positions, the most effective route to a job offer in Switzerland and a permit for employment remains Swiss recruitment websites and the Swiss employment, placement, and headhunting agencies which all have an important presence on the web.

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Find Employment – Job board for I.T./Telecoms

Posted on 31 March 2007 by info

We regularly post a sampling of job offers across Switzerland — usually on a bi-weekly basis. Our job board permits those interesting in surveying the employment marketplace to get an idea of some of the jobs currently being recruited. We also supply the contact information in case you wish to follow up on the opportunity. See our postings concerning job application procedures and culture in Switzerland for an overview fo the type of documents and the format of the c.v. expected by recruiters and Human Resources officials who will read your job application. Our listing is a very small snapshot of employment opportunities at any given time and is designed to simply highlight a few positions currently up for recruitment.

Work-in-Switzerland’s selection of current job openings in the Information Technology Fields advertised during week 4 of March (instructions for applying or follow-up are indicated) :

Software Engineer
Swatch Group Research and Development SA, Marin
ASULAB Division,
“Electronic Systems Group” looking for Engineer with good knowledge in hardware
see information on

Experienced C++ Software Developers
Bloomberg is the leading global provider of data, news and analytics. Seeking experienced enginners –
developing multi-threaded, high-performance applications on Windows with a strong knowledge of C++,STL, MFC Windows SDK
Experience in designing object orientated applications and debugging.
Apply to Human Resources, Bloomberg Email :

Lugano in SwitzerlandSr Project Leader
Sirius Technologies AG, Zurich
See infor at
E-Mail to

Account Managers Business Customers
Orange Communications, Geneva – Lausanne – Berne – Lucerne
responsibility for the entire sales process in particular for acquisition,
need identification, bid/quote preparation, presentation of
Orange unique selling point, co-ordination of service delivery, sales closing.
apply now to email :

IT Technical Officer
World Health Organization, Geneva
Vacancy Notice No: HQ/07/GMG/TA100
Title: IT Specialist (Product Analyst-Information Worker Applications) – REOPEN*
Vacancy Notice No: GMG/07/FT78

Oracle Applications Engineer – Job Code 0600546
Merk Serono, Geneva
Engineer will document guidelines for the use of the Oracle Applications
(Oracle Manufacturing, Finance and Human Resources) platform (technology and architecture). Implement document staging and rollout mechanisms for the Oracle Applications
Must send your resume to Merck Serono International SA. Apply online at:

UBS Marcel OspelC# Developer (Job Reference # 21862BR)
UBS AG , Basel
Function Category Research & Analysis
Required: ETH / Fachhochschule or equivalent education
Excellent development knowledge in .net and C#
Excellent knowledge in Database development or Administration (MS SQL 2000/2005) would be an advantage
Contact : UBS AG
Mr. Th. Schnoz, Recruitment Services
Tel. +41-44-234 73 44
or consult the UBS website

Network Security Engineer (CCNP and/or CCSP)
LAN/WAN team is responsible for the sunrise IT infrastructure for sunrise,
TDC Switzerland AG , Zurich
Design, development and installation of new services on the infrastructure level
Definition of security architecture guidelines
Cisco switch and router configuration
Contact Human Resources, Monika Wäspe
Telephone +41 58 777 90 27 ;

Swiss mountainsManager Web Editing
World Economic Forum, Geneva
head of the website team, which includes two Web
Editors, you will be in charge of the ongoing development of our website
apply at

Internal Communication and Events Manager
GOOGLE, Zurich
Develop and maintain channels of internal communication to support
Google’s engineering team in EMEA
Apply via: a text (ASCII), PDF, Word or HTML version of your resume in English to
Important: the subject field of your email must include:
Internal Communication and Events Manager – Zurich
Company URL:

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Applying for Jobs

Posted on 25 March 2007 by info

Newly arrived residents generally agree: Switzerland is a very cosmopolitan country. But Swiss culture is, at base, conservative. As a rule, Swiss employers want to see on any candidate’s resume, the applicant’s:

age, nationality, work permit status,

Banks have a tendency to require, in addition, the applicant’s legal domicile.

Partly because of the heavy burden of federally-mandated pension contributions –which employers are required to make on behalf of employees, and which increase along with the age of the employee (reaching a maximum after 45 years of age)– and partly for myriad other reasons, it is more difficult to find work when one is in one’s mid-forties, and even more difficult when one is over 50. An exception to this tendency is found in high-level managerial positions. Otherwise, there is nothing special about the commonly found formats of a Swiss curriculum vitae, and as in most countries the CV should include:

educational qualifications, personal details, work experience, language skills, computer skills, extra-curricular activities and interests

swiss company=Very often a photo is attached to one’s curriculum vitae. Though there are now debates to eliminate this requirement for reasons of equal employment opportunities and anti-discrimination, it is still common practice and most employers like to see one, just like they want to see your birthdate or age.

The curriculum vitae should always be written in a formal manner and it can either be in chronological, reversed or functional order. It should be sent with a covering letter (one page), as well as work certificates or references from your previous employers, and copies of diplomas.

The concept of a ‘work certificate’ is particularly Swiss. It is a kind of parting document which your employer writes for you to sum up his assessment of you.
Call it a ‘required reference.’ An entire unwritten code exists as to how to write and how to interpret these work certificates. It is illegal to write a ‘negative’ work certificate for a parting or dismissed employee, but of course there are ways that the unsaid is said. It is to your advantage to have strong work certificates or other references.

Candidates from abroad wishing to find jobs in Switzerland can consult a variety of corporate websites, employment agency websites and recruitment companies such as Michael Page, Edicom, Jobwinner, Jobscout24, Jobup, Monster, and others. These sites have up-to-the-minute advertisements for job openings in Switzerland along with the requirements sought.

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Job Opportunities in Switzerland

Posted on 25 March 2007 by info

For the highly skilled or highly educated, Switzerland offers wide opportunities for employment. There remains a shortage of highly qualified workers in Switzerland, due to the outsized nature of the Swiss infrastructure, which in spite of its small population of 7 million has a global footprint.
For those with high levels of training, qualifications, experience and the determination to excel, there are diverse opportunities for work in switzerland, and a wide range of job opportunities across most sectors of the economy. The Swiss manufacturing sector in pharmaceuticals, chemicals, machine manufacture and electronics currently has an enormous demand for skilled labor. Much of the industrial and pharmaceutical sector is concentrated in the swiss-german part of the country, with the bulk of opportunities being available in the region aroung Zurich and Basel area. The service sectors of banking, insurance/reinsurance, consultancy and tourism are very important and employ a large percentage of the workforce. The financial sector sector, spread throughout Switzerland, with employment in Switzerlandimportant centers in Geneva, Lugano, Zurich and Basel, is in a hiring boom. Switzerland continues to experience shortages of highly qualified candidates in science-intensive fields, especially in Information Technology, which is widely demanded across most industries. Further employment shortages are in engineering, management and medical services. The strongest shortages in specific professions noted in 2006 were :

IT specialist, Economist, Finance specialist, Lawyers, Business executives, Biotechnologists, and Communication systems engineers

Certain professions –such as psychologist, sociologist, geographer, zoologist or botanist — have limited opportunities because the Swiss market is relatively glutted with qualified candidates. Also, medical doctors will find the main cities relatively saturated and therefore the welcome will not be especially warm. However, doctors coming to set up practice in the Swiss hinterlands (away from important agglomerations like Zurich, Basel, Geneva, Lausanne, Lugano, …) will find it easier.

When you are looking for work in Switzerland, you need to consider the regional differences in Switzerland relative to the employment sector you are looking in. For example, if you are looking for employment in International Institutions (World Trade Organisation, Red Cross, United Nations etc.), your focus should be Geneva because it is the center for most international and humanitarian organisations. Nonetheless, there are other international institutions in other parts of Switzerland, such as the Bank for International Settlements in Basel.

swiss companyGeneva (along with Zurich and Lugano) is well-known for private banking and one finds important institutions such as Pictet & Cie, Lombard Odier Darier Hentsch, and others which have their headquarters there.

If you have a look at the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs site or the chamber of commerce in the canton you desire to work in, you can often find information on companies in Switzerland.
For finance and business opportunities, the largest number of opportunities exist in the Zurich area. Ticino, Geneva, and Basel are other capital-rich regions. Keep in mind that most multinational and international companies use English as the language of conduct, but Swiss companies and most small enterprises use either German , French or Italian so it is useful to learn the basics of the language of the region in which you intend to reside, not only for professional advantages but also for general social use.

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Watch Industry Still Growing

Posted on 22 March 2007 by Klebnikov

According to Jean-Daniel Pasche, the president of the Federation Hologere, the Swiss watch industry is beating all records of profitability.

The Swiss luxury watch industry is exceeding all profit expectations and increasing its exports markedly; in the month of February alone, exports reached roughly $ 1 billion, which represents a rise of over 20% over February 2006. Such sales have never been seen before in the early months of the year when sales are traditionally slow. The boom is providing a large impetus to job growth in Switzerland and to opportunities for work in the Swiss marketplace.

Variation in sales over the months of the year is approximately 12%. Over 1.8 million watches were exported last month.

woman-with-watchAccording to Pasche, growth depends on the watch sector’s continued investment in research. “We are benefiting from the general health of the world economy and, also, the attractiveness of our products. Over the last 10 years, patent registration has significantly risen. The development of new materials for diminishing friction within watch mechanisms has grown, as has general reliability of components.”

Pasche asserts that while last year there were a few lagging segments of the watch making sector, this year the all the segments of the watch industry are showing strong growth. This year, like the preceding years, the largest growth is in high end luxury watches. The luxury watch industry has become a huge source of work in Switzerland providing employment opportunities in many related fields.

“The progression of the markets in Russia and China is not new but it is still growing and we’re benefiting from it. While we’re doing strongly on our traditional markets, it is helping us considerably to be experiencing developing sales on these emerging markets – this bodes well for the longevity of our success.”

The United States remains the largest export market for Swiss watches, just ahead of Hong Kong and Japan. However, Russia, with a growth of over 150%, is the most promising export market, along with China, which registered 56% growth.

Market growth has affected all price ranges of watches, though the high end (over CHF 3000) has shown the largest growth in sales.

With the sector booming, the various brands are having a difficult time recruiting qualified watchmakers, micro-technicians, and other specialists. Many job openings take months to fill and the several dozen competing brands in the luxury industry have adopted the habit of poaching each other’s employees.

Several renowned brands are located in Neuchatel: Bulgari, Cartier, Chanel, Christian Dior, Fendi, Gucci, Hugo Boss, Mont-Blanc, Nina Ricci. Many others are in the Geneva area.

The website has an assemblage of practicall all the major luxury brands — a fine point of departure for the jobseeker, career-executive, or quidam looking for work in Switzerland in the watch industry.

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