Work in Switzerland

How to get a job in Switzerland for foreigners?

Here we offer the fullest selection of websites for getting jobs in Switzerland; it includes both classic job search engines and Swiss job boards, the employment service website.               

JOB-ROOM the official website of Swiss public employment service. Here you can find the job offers with the employers’ direct contracts, as well as links to the vacancies posted in the search services and respective companies’ website sections. The vacancies are not limited to one canton. Moreover, there is an “abroad” option in the job country menu. You can choose any occupation without restrictions as well. 

Should the EU-citizens get a working visa?

There are two policies in Switzerland regarding the allocation of jobs and issuing visas for foreigners. The first one is targeted at the EU citizens prioritizing their rights for getting a job with visa-free entry; the second one is for third-country nationals, who may only be hired if no one with equivalent qualifications can be found in Switzerland or in an EU member state and have to get a working visa.

How can non-EU citizens enter into Switzerland legally?

1. Get a type D visa from the Swiss Embassy.
3. Register at your local Registration Office after entering into Switzerland.
4. Get a biometric residence permit.

How can you get a work permit in Switzerland?

Your future employer in Switzerland shall apply for the foreigner’s work permit to the local cantonal employment service. After positive decision, the canton sends the documents to State Secretariat for Migration in Bern that processes the application and informs the employer, the employee, the local canton and the foreigner’s Consulate abroad of its decision. The work permit is an official form of State Secretariat for Migration SEM.

Registration of foreigners after they have entered into Switzerland

For a long-term stay, any foreign nationals must register with the immigration authorities within 14 days after they have entered into Switzerland. You are not permitted to start work until you are registered. When leaving the country, after staying for more than 90 days, the foreigners must deregister with the local authorities and have their residence permit cancelled.

Biometric cards for foreign nationals

After being registered, the foreign employee must apply for a residence permit (biometric card). The procedure for an application and card issue is usually determined by the local canton. The applicant’s identity is proved by his/her passport.  

There are 3 categories of cards for foreigners in Switzerland:

 - L-permit, (short-term residents), less than a year,
 - B-permit (1 year permit),
 - C-permit (Permanent residence).

What languages are suitable for work in Switzerland?

Don’t rush with the “swiss” answer. Indeed, the country appeared as the intersection of three European cultures: German, French and Italian.   
Approximately 65% of the Swiss population speaks German, i.e. 17 of 26 cantons (including Bern); therefore, the German language skills have a higher priority in Switzerland.  The French-speaking population lives in Romandy, western Switzerland, and amounts to approximately 22.6 %. The French language skills will be useful for that region.
As for the Italian, approximately 500 000 people (8.3 %) speak it in canton of Ticino and four southern valleys of Graubünden. To get a job for foreigners in this part of Switzerland, it would be better to look for the vacancies that require the Italian language skills.