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Old 16.02.2008, 21:31
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Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Hello all,

I am a CIMA qualified accountant working and living in the UK.

I would love to move to, and work in, Switzerland, on what will hopefully be a permanent basis.

Could someone similar who is trying to, or has succeeded in, doing this, let me know how easy/difficult it was?
Did you go through a recruitment agent? If so, which ones did you find the best?
Also, my French is school-level, but I certainly hope to achieve fluency in this while I'm there. Do you think this will hinder my search?

I would be very grateful for any advice.

Thanks
Brandy
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  #2  
Old 18.02.2008, 23:05
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General question Re: Jobs in Geneva

Hi again.

I don't know why I didn't get any replies to my query.

Maybe there just aren't any finance people looking at this forum recently?

Or maybe my question was too general - I don't know.

Maybe anyone (of any profession) could give me a general idea of the level of difficulty and length of time I should allow in order to achieve my aim.

Any replies greatly appreciated!
Brandy
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  #3  
Old 19.02.2008, 09:53
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Re: General question Re: Jobs in Geneva

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Hi again.

I don't know why I didn't get any replies to my query.

Maybe there just aren't any finance people looking at this forum recently?

Or maybe my question was too general - I don't know.

Maybe anyone (of any profession) could give me a general idea of the level of difficulty and length of time I should allow in order to achieve my aim.

Any replies greatly appreciated!
Brandy
I wasn't in the same position as you but here are some observations if it helps:
1. Not speaking French, not being resident here and (I assume) not having a work permit in Switzerland will make it harder. Not impossible but you will be at a disadvantage.
2. Having said that there are lots of english speaking companies and organisations in Switzerland. The finance and banking sector is a big employer. Many of these sponsor moves of existing employees from home countries to fill vacancies in CH but many will recruit locally. There are lots of people working for these companies who do not have good French.
3. Have you looked at this thread which lists recruitment agencies:
http://www.englishforum.ch/jobs/3653...itzerland.html.
4. Consider extending your search to the Canton of Vaud as it will give you more scope.
5. As regards timing, how long depends on how long it takes to get a job but it can take three months plus for the work permit to come through.
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Old 20.02.2008, 02:00
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Hi Nev.

Thanks for the reply.
So good to get an idea of someone else's experiences.

But I don't understand what you meant about the 3-month wait for the work permit.
I was under the impression that anyone with an EU passport no longer needed to apply for a work permit to work in Switzerland - just a temporary residency permit which is fairly automatic.
Is this wrong?
If so, should I be applying for one now to get a head-start?

Brandy
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  #5  
Old 20.02.2008, 10:17
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Sorry, I meant residence permit. The law has moved on but my head hasn't. The point I was trying to make is that there is still a process to go through and depending on the canton it can take a while to process the application and get the actual document in your hands. Zurich and Vaud are notorious for taking months to process the application. Read through the threads here. There is loads of info. on permits. You say a short-term visa. How long are you planning to stay?
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Old 20.02.2008, 10:22
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Brandy,
Just saw this thread which is an excellent summary:
EU Permits - A few bullet points
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  #7  
Old 20.02.2008, 12:23
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Hi Brandy

I am accountant living and working in Geneva (ACA though), I will try and aswer your questions:


Could someone similar who is trying to, or has succeeded in, doing this, let me know how easy/difficult it was?
If you have the right skills, in my opinion, it is quite easy to get accountancy jobs in Geneva, there are a lot to choose from!
Did you go through a recruitment agent? If so, which ones did you find the best?
All the jobs I was offered were through agents, the job I have now is via MP, although I honestly don't rate them that high.. The best way to get a job is to be here, and the best website I found was www.jobup.ch, although there are others
Also, my French is school-level, but I certainly hope to achieve fluency in this while I'm there. Do you think this will hinder my search?
Probably, as you will have less choice, although I don't speak a word of French

As for the waiting for the permit, I am not sure what the law actually states, but I started work and my first day the application for a B permit was put in (and I know other companies that also let you fill in the application on your first day..)

Anything else, let me know!
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Old 20.02.2008, 12:59
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Don't forget that if you can take time out to look for a job, in terms of residence there's flexibility for short term stays for Eu nationals/job seekers. It's all in the threads.
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Old 20.02.2008, 13:05
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

I am CIMA qualified and can give you my experience of getting a job over here.

Firstly, a lot of Finance/Accounting jobs here focus on the banking/auditing sectors, which means for a CIMA accountant you're going to need a good CV and some broad experience to get yourself to interview and impress. CIMA isn't really a "banking" qualification or an "auditing" qualification.

Unfortunately, those seem to be the companies who seek English speaking first, with other languages as a "plus".

However, there are jobs out there! I signed up to an agency called Swisslinx who were very helpful, however I am based in Zurich. In Zurich they speak German, and I don't, but this didn't remove all of my options and I got a good job utilising my CIMA qualification (e.g. budgeting, management accounts).

So if you're looking at the French side of Switzerland, Geneva area, it is not impossible to get a job with school level French. There are a lot of international companies who will look for English first with other languages as a bonus. Just make it very clear to any recruiters that you are determined to learn the language of the area (e.g. French) and that you're enrolling on classes right now in preparation (even if this is stretching the truth).

Good luck.
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Old 20.02.2008, 13:08
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

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Hi Nev.

Thanks for the reply.
So good to get an idea of someone else's experiences.

But I don't understand what you meant about the 3-month wait for the work permit.
I was under the impression that anyone with an EU passport no longer needed to apply for a work permit to work in Switzerland - just a temporary residency permit which is fairly automatic.
Is this wrong?
If so, should I be applying for one now to get a head-start?

Brandy
If you are looking to get a permanent job over here, and applying for a permanent job, then you shouldn't have too many problems, and I wouldn't worry. Most empolyers for permanent employees will effectively "sponsor" your application and you should get a B permit (which is 5 years). I just checked with the recruiter what I needed to do, which turned out to be nothing.

As the permit is a residence permit you can't apply now, you need to have a Swiss address and confirmation of employment.

My advice is, if you are moving permanently, as soon as you get a job offer and accept - look for accomodation. I read something about in Zurich unoccupency of appartments is under 1%, so they go fast! And it is really important to look immediately, because it can take a while to get a place. On the plus side, having this sorted before you arrive takes out a lot of hassle and means you can get the residency process started much more quickly (and without hassle).
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Old 20.02.2008, 14:21
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

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Hi Brandy
As for the waiting for the permit, I am not sure what the law actually states, but I started work and my first day the application for a B permit was put in (and I know other companies that also let you fill in the application on your first day..)
That's interesting. I always thought that even though EU nationals have easier access to a resident's permit now since the quota came off it is still illegal to work without some kind of permit. That's why my brain still think of the B permit like a work permit ie you can't work without it, and if you don't have an employment contract lined up you have to show some measure of financial means to show you aren't going to be a burden on the state. Maybe once the application is in and the employer is doing the sponsoring Geneva treats you as "in the system" for tax, AVS etc????
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Old 20.02.2008, 14:26
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

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As the permit is a residence permit you can't apply now, you need to have a Swiss address and confirmation of employment.

My advice is, if you are moving permanently, as soon as you get a job offer and accept - look for accomodation. I read something about in Zurich unoccupency of appartments is under 1%, so they go fast! And it is really important to look immediately, because it can take a while to get a place. On the plus side, having this sorted before you arrive takes out a lot of hassle and means you can get the residency process started much more quickly (and without hassle).
I'm sure you're right about starting the flat search asap but I think you can apply using a temporary address. I did anyway then registered the change when I found permanent accommodation but then again I was applying in Vaud not Geneva.
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Old 20.02.2008, 14:45
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

the pharma companies in Basel employ lots of financial analysts. German/French generally not required.....
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Old 24.02.2008, 16:37
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Hi

I'd love to hear how your search is going.

I'm really considering a move to geneva in the next 6-12 months.

Currently I work in compliance for a large organisation (law background) really trying to make the move to more financial side so considering either acca's or cfa - does anyone have any advice on which of these to try?
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Old 24.03.2008, 01:10
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

Hi everyone.

My situation is very much like Brandy's.
But with the added complication of a lifetime's worth of possessions
ie have recently sold my flat and was hoping that if I received a job offer that they would pay for my stuff to be moved to Switzerland (have had some quotes and it would seem more sensible for me to simply abandon it - in other words thousands - what a shock!)

Do companies normally pay for their new staff to relocate their possessions on receipt of a firm job offer?

What do you guys think?

Thanks for any future responses
Greg
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Old 05.11.2014, 08:38
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Re: Finance/Accounting Jobs in Geneva

hi to all...

first of all i would like to tell u all about me i am rahul currently living in India and i have complited Bechlor of Commerce and chartered accountant course from india and now i am looking for a job in switzerland so could you ples help me and tell me the easiest way to find a accounts job in switzerland.

thanks
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