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Old 01.06.2011, 23:46
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Seeking some advice

Hello all,

Long time lurker here. I've read through a great deal of posts (specifically those relevant to this sub-forum) and have tried to relate the relevant tidbits of advice to my own situation.

I've decided to go ahead and ask you ladies and gents out-right for some straight forward advice. Hope you don't mind

To summarize my situation,

Graduated from a public university last year with an Industrial Engineering Degree.

Currently, I work for a Defense Contractor out here in the States as a Quality Engineer.

I've been trying to get overseas for a while. The good news is that I am actually a dual citizen (UK and USA) and in the process of finalizing my UK Passport. My language background is some basic French but I'm far from fluent. I don't know much German.

I notice that many of the jobs discussed (especially English speaking ones) are centered on accounting/finance and IT. I was curious about the engineering/manufacturing world as well. These questions pertain to both Swiss and German based jobs.

Questions:

1) Should I focus my search in Germany or Switzerland for careers suitable to my education and background?

2) What kind of revisions should I be making to my CV in order to fit such employers?

3) Should I move over to a specified region over in Germany/Switzerland and then attempt to secure a job?

4) Is there any additional designations/classes/certifications that I should acquire to aid in my search?

I appreciate any and all responses.

Thanks guys!

Last edited by jrspet; 02.06.2011 at 00:07. Reason: Attach a CV without your personal identifiers
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  #2  
Old 01.06.2011, 23:55
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Re: Seeking some advice

Welcome to the Forum! Thanks for the introduction.

You might be a happier bunny if you found work in the UK. We all complain about working here in Switzerland, and it really is a difficult way of life, especially if you are not fluent in D or F.

For a manufacturing job you would be better working in Germany, France or UK. There really isn't very much work here, and as a "US citizen" you would come way down the list, after the Swiss & the fluent Europeans.
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  #3  
Old 02.06.2011, 00:13
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Re: Seeking some advice

Try ABB or Alstom in Baden
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Old 02.06.2011, 00:17
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Re: Seeking some advice

I'm not completely set on Manufacturing. IE's are used in many different businesses for a variety of things. Back here in the states, many IEs are used in Operations/Optimization in Financial institutes. Some, I know, have jobs as Quantitative Analysts (though its near impossible to get this type of job).

I'm not really set on one specific industry as I like applying my skill set to new venues. Manufacturing, I find, is just an easier sell.

But I think your advice is still relevant. Question, though, if living and working in Switzerland is so miserable then why is everyone looking to go there? I thought it was a pretty awesome place when I went but I had tourist eyes. Plus I don't know if I can get by in France without being fluent. Anyone have any experience in this?

Also, just so I'm on the same page...I am also an EU citizen (UK). Is that why you used "US" in quotations? Just kinda fuzzy on that one.
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Old 02.06.2011, 00:23
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Re: Seeking some advice

Putting up a copy of my resume.

Last one had too much personal information for moderator's taste. My bad.

Hopefully this one will be okay.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf CV.pdf (251.3 KB, 140 views)
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Old 02.06.2011, 00:57
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Re: Seeking some advice

Quote:
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...
Questions:

1) Should I focus my search in Germany or Switzerland for careers suitable to my education and background?

2) What kind of revisions should I be making to my CV in order to fit such employers?

3) Should I move over to a specified region over in Germany/Switzerland and then attempt to secure a job?

4) Is there any additional designations/classes/certifications that I should acquire to aid in my search?

I appreciate any and all responses.

Thanks guys!
Per your second question, take a look at a very helpful post yesterday from EF member @Mowvich containing a sample CV geared specifically for the Swiss employment market - And the good news is....... You can compare it with your version and modify accordingly.

In fact, there are some great tips and pointers throughout that thread and which was started by him. Check it out.

Good luck!
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  #7  
Old 02.06.2011, 00:59
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Re: Seeking some advice

Although you have a UK passport, you are essentially a USA person, with US qualifications and US experience.

I would think if you want to come to Europe, then start with the UK, it will be MUCH easier, as British companies have much more experience with US practises and you would fit in much easier. Also with a UK passport you need no visas or permits, and employers prefer less complications. Self employment is also very possible in Britain.

I ask everyone I meet, did you come to Switzerland for love or for money. All giggle a bit and then answer with either love or money, rarely both!

I have worked as an electronics technician in UK defense for 13 years, in Malaysia 3 years, in southern Germany 12 years, in French Switzerland 10 years and in German Switzerland 7 years. (Was unemployed here 4 years! I am now retired).
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Old 02.06.2011, 10:04
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Re: Seeking some advice

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Question, though, if living and working in Switzerland is so miserable then why is everyone looking to go there? I thought it was a pretty awesome place when I went but I had tourist eyes.
You answered your own question here. Many people come, or plan to come, wearing rose-coloured spectacles. The anglophones think everyone speaks English. The country has a reputation for being well-organised and clean. The locals are sure to be friendly and it would be great to learn to ski... Then the prospective newcomer starts looking for a job - and the employers aren't always in agreement about the value of the job-seekers qualifications or whether a permit will be forth-coming.

Then comes accomodation. Most people here live in rented flats - a shock to home-owners from other countries. In said flats, washing machines may well be shared by many occupants, and the rota may, or may not, function satisfactorily. The locals are perhaps not quite as welcoming as the people connected with the tourist regions were. And in the German speaking part of Switzerland, the German one might have learned at school will help you to read the newspaper but will not guarantee that you can communicate with your neighbour. And the 'well-organised' comes at a price. Every canton makes many of its own rules and each village adds a few more. And of course, you, too, are expected to stick to them. All of them. Even the ones written in tiny writing on the back of the paper or perhaps not even written down at all.

I've lived here for ages. I love it. I wouldn't really want to live anywhere else. But folk who come all starry-eyed - stars caused by being madly in love or by the thought of high wages here (which are countered by high prices anyway) - often come down to earth with a nasty bump.
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Last edited by Longbyt; 02.06.2011 at 11:00. Reason: grammar
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