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Old 08.10.2014, 12:20
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where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

Hi there,

I am so glad to have stumbled across this site and am so hopeful that we can get some help from some of you here.
I was born in NZ, was raised in Ch until 19 years of age and then I moved to NZ again. I bought my husband over to Ch with me and we got married, had twins here and after 2 1/2 years moved back to NZ, where we have been now for 23 years. After returning to Ch for a holiday a few months ago, I came back to my husband and said that I would love to move back to Ch again. To my surprise he was all for it and we are now in the process of selling our house and then we hope to move to Ch by the end of January (if the house sells).
Here is our problem, neither of us have got qualifications that count in Ch. My husband has been an orchard manager for the last 8 years and I have been home with the children, but in the last two years I have been self employed as a cleaner.
I have spent hours and hours looking on job sites to see what kind of jobs there are available, but they all want qualifications. I do have some family in Ch, but most of them are pensioned and not in the work force anymore, so don't have many contacts anymore.
Both my husband and I are willing to give most jobs a go.
We would really appreciate some advice from you all, as I have to admit that I am starting to worry about not finding work when we get there.
We look forward to reading your posts. Many, many thanks in advance!!
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Old 08.10.2014, 12:34
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

Maybe look for more cleaning work...? Without qualifications or german language ability, your choices will be severely limited.

Seems a bit hasty, possibly even slightly foolish, to up and sell your house to come and live in a much more expensive country, when you don't even know what employment opportunities there are... I just hope you have good savings, and don't mind using most of them.

If I lived in NZ and owned my own house, and was in or approaching middle-age age, I think the last thing on my mind would be moving to Switzerland without a job where I would then be paying a ton of money for rent, a ton of money if I wanted to buy somewhere, and a ton of money for cost of living and eating out. At your stage in life, it seems like it could be a bit of a backwards step in preparing for your retirement/dotage.
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Old 08.10.2014, 12:43
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

If your husband doesn't speak a Swiss language he's going to struggle to find any work as he needs to understand what he's being told to do, written instructions, etc.

I'm sorry to say that I agree with Richdog, this is a hasty decision and one that's likely to end badly. Stay where you are and enjoy holidays here.
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Old 08.10.2014, 12:43
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

I can see that one could think that and I respect your opinion.
We have the opinion that since we are not expecting any special jobs and are willing to give anything a hand, that we should be able to find work eventually, we just hoped that we could find some while still here, so we could 'walk into a job'.
As our children have all grown up and long left home, we decided this would be our opportunity to do something that we would enjoy, so the plan was to work hard and on the days off, we would take advantage of all the lovely things that Switzerland has to offer. Then after about 5 years, we might return to NZ again, all depending on how things go. If we like it and all is going well, we would stay on, or else we return.
We are hopeful that things will work out and if they don't, well then we will deal with that too, but we want to at least give it a go.
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Old 08.10.2014, 12:46
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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We have the opinion that since we are not expecting any special jobs and are willing to give anything a hand, that we should be able to find work eventually, we just hoped that we could find some while still here, so we could 'walk into a job'.
If you thought you could "walk into a job" in probably one of the toughest and most competitive job markets in Europe, especially for unskilled labour where people are clamouring to find work and most speak the native language, then certainly the term "a little foolish" certainly applies. I'm not saying it's impossible, but your expectations need to be a little more grounded and realistic.
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Old 08.10.2014, 12:55
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

Also depends where you plan to live? You might have better chance with seasonal work in the french speaking part, in the summer there is agricultural work, in the winter ski resorts often take staff for cleaning/hosting/bar work

don't plan on living anywhere near the lake of Zurich or Geneva unless you want to pay double the price of any other canton.
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Old 08.10.2014, 13:41
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

There's no way your husband is going to walk into any job before you move. As a non-EU national he's last on the list of people to be considered for employment here, those ahead of him being Swiss/EU nationals and anyone else who already has a permit to live/work here. So you can forget that. The fact that he's married to a Swiss national means nothing until you actually move here. Only then will he be granted a 1-year B permit as your dependent and could then start to look for work.

Neither cleaning nor gardening/agricultural work is going to pay many bills here so you're going to be looking at either subsistance living on two meager salaries or dipping into your savings/house sale money.
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Old 08.10.2014, 13:56
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

Agree with all above and then some, please, pretty, pretty please don´t become a "we told you so" because that is what is gonna happen. Come for a holiday first and take a look how even the highly skilled unemployed are treated.
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:19
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

you can take a look at jobs.ch or any other website but like you already discovered.. only on highly qualified jobs you could survive with english only.
The situation is really not easy. You do need the language.
Maybe your husband could do some german courses before coming (i recommend that because they are going to be more expensive here and you could do it in NZ while working and in your own house). Or french.. I don't know where you are planning on going.
The idea of coming and the adventure is good but i would take a little more time to come prepared.
I have here many european friends with qualifications that still can't find a job because they can't speak the language. And they will have to return to their countries soon because you can only extend the L permit (european working for job in Ch) up to 6 months.
Hope it works better for you
Good luck!
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:20
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

What's with all the negativity and naysaying?

They're adults. They have no dependent children. They would like to give it a try and if it doesn't work they'll go back. I think a couple with grown children are responsible and smart enough to know what their finances will and will not allow. What's the problem?

I found myself in the same situation as them ten years ago. I sold everything and moved here, knowing that if didn't work out I could head back. It worked out just fine. (quite a bit better than just "fine", actually)

You only live once.
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:32
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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What's with all the negativity and naysaying?

They're adults. They have no dependent children. They would like to give it a try and if it doesn't work they'll go back. I think a couple with grown children are responsible and smart enough to know what their finances will and will not allow. What's the problem?

I found myself in the same situation as them ten years ago. I sold everything and moved here, knowing that if didn't work out I could head back. It worked out just fine. (quite a bit better than just "fine", actually)

You only live once.
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We would really appreciate some advice from you all, as I have to admit that I am starting to worry about not finding work when we get there.
Forgive me for intruding on your "It worked for me 10 years ago so it must work for everyone now" fantasies, but some of us are realists and give advice based on more likely scenarios.
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:45
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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Forgive me for intruding on your "It worked for me 10 years ago so it must work for everyone now" fantasies, but some of us are realists.
I didn't say it would work for everyone, nor did I imply it.

And why is everyone assuming she doesn't speak german? Unless I'm missing something she lived in Switzerland for 19 years. I don't think she'll have any problem finding an "average" job, her husband will likely have more difficult time.
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:47
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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What's with all the negativity and naysaying?

They're adults. They have no dependent children. They would like to give it a try and if it doesn't work they'll go back. I think a couple with grown children are responsible and smart enough to know what their finances will and will not allow. What's the problem?

I found myself in the same situation as them ten years ago. I sold everything and moved here, knowing that if didn't work out I could head back. It worked out just fine. (quite a bit better than just "fine", actually)

You only live once.
totally agree! go for the ski resorts, etc. they often have jobs going for nz go-getters that won't be advertised in the papers. plenty of cleaning jobs too. why not look at setting up your own cleaning agency or apply for a job through one? i can recommend haushaltshilfen24 as customer and our cleaner is very happy with them as an employer.

talk to the swiss embassy in wellington, they are very helpful.

i know people here with a similar setup and they also make a living on jobs as labourers. you might not go on holiday twice a year overseas as some people here are used to but as you say, you can just enjoy the local stuff and if it doesn't work in the end you can always move back.

good on you and go for it!
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:49
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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What's with all the negativity and naysaying?

They're adults. They have no dependent children. They would like to give it a try and if it doesn't work they'll go back. I think a couple with grown children are responsible and smart enough to know what their finances will and will not allow. What's the problem?

I found myself in the same situation as them ten years ago. I sold everything and moved here, knowing that if didn't work out I could head back. It worked out just fine. (quite a bit better than just "fine", actually)

You only live once.
So..... what advice would you give to Kiwi2Swiss, then?

I think I would struggle a lot here without knowing one of the national languages. Just looking around, the only jobs I can think of where English only may be acceptable is a job like mine, which is in academia (which needs a formal qualification).

I guess the only other one is English teacher / tutor, in a private capacity. And possibly babysitting / au pairing and the like. Or if you open your own restaurant (international flavour), though you would need the assistance of someone to help you cut through the legal mumbo-jumbo etc., which of course would be in the local language.

Cleaners here, from what I could tell, speak the local language, and usually are not fluent at all in English anyway!

Putting aside the issue of language fluency, I'm not sure what the job market is like for people with no formal qualifications, but as others have said that people who are Swiss citizens and EU/EEA are prioritised.
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:51
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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So..... what advice would you give to Kiwi2Swiss, then?

I think I would struggle a lot here without knowing one of the national languages. Just looking around, the only jobs I can think of where English only may be acceptable is a job like mine, which is in academia (which needs a formal qualification).

I guess the only other one is English teacher / tutor, in a private capacity. And possibly babysitting / au pairing and the like. Or if you open your own restaurant (international flavour), though you would need the assistance of someone to help you cut through the legal mumbo-jumbo etc., which of course would be in the local language.

Cleaners here, from what I could tell, speak the local language, and usually are not fluent at all in English anyway!

Putting aside the issue of language fluency, I'm not sure what the job market is like for people with no formal qualifications, but as others have said that people who are Swiss citizens and EU/EEA are prioritised.
Again, what did I miss? If I read correctly she lived in Switzerland for 19 years. I'm sure she knows a national language...
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:52
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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Again, what did I miss? If I read correctly she lived in Switzerland for 19 years. I'm sure she knows a national language...
OK that means at least she is in the clear on one of those fronts. Now for the job with no qualifications part.....

Is it a big effort in CH to set up your own small / casual business? For example, cleaning services, small catering etc. That could be an idea.
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:53
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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I didn't say it would work for everyone, nor did I imply it.

And why is everyone assuming she doesn't speak german? Unless I'm missing something she lived in Switzerland for 19 years. I don't think she'll have any problem finding an "average" job, her husband will likely have more difficult time.
Because she doesn't say that she or her husband speaks German.
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Old 08.10.2014, 14:55
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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Because she doesn't say that she or her husband speaks German.
She said she was raised in Switzerland until the age of 19. If that's the case it isn't humanly possible that she doesn't speak one of the languages.
I'll see your and raise you a .
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Old 08.10.2014, 15:02
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

there is a construction boom in some parts of switzerland at the moment, so again that means jobs and many will not require you to speak a lot of german, just have the right attitude.

good luck!
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Old 08.10.2014, 15:12
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Re: where to look for jobs with no job qualifications

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there is a construction boom in some parts of switzerland at the moment, so again that means jobs and many will not require you to speak a lot of german, just have the right attitude.

good luck!
Knowledge of Italian, Portuguese or at least Spanish would be a big plus...

Seriously, there is a fierce competition on this kind of jobs and it is not only the locals they would have to compete with. I find OPs decision to sell their house/everything in order to move here without having anything (what about the place they will live, do they know how difficult is to be accepted by owners here?) set up in advance... very imprudent.
This is what I would tell to any of my friends if they would ask and if they were in the same position.

Last edited by greenmount; 08.10.2014 at 15:33.
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