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Old 16.12.2016, 22:47
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Considering a move to Switzerland

Hi All


Further to UK voting on leaving the EU, am interested to know how Swiss employers feel about taking on people from UK.


I'm qualified accountant, with over 20 years experience of working in small - medium sized companies, looking to move to anywhere in Switzerland where I can get an English Speaking role.


French language skills are basic and will continue to develop slowly.


I get the feeling that trying to secure work in Switzerland whilst in the UK is not that feasible although that's just a feeling as most recruitment consultants don't even respond.


At the moment thinking of moving to Switzerland then start looking from there in March 17 but would be good to get feedback as to how risky an option this could be in current uncertain climate.


All feedback welcome!


Thanks
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Old 16.12.2016, 23:36
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

It is very hard to give you any reliable information because no one really knows how things will pan out. At the moment you are responsible for doing the paperwork to get your permit etc. and I doubt employers have given it much long term thought. My own feeling is that people with permanent residence status will be fine, but others without specialist skills may have difficulties, but only time will tell.

On the accounting side, without a local language there is not much change of getting involved in small to medium sized companies. If your qualification is one that is recognized here, you could take recognition exam which is in English, but you'd still need to be able deal with people in the local language.

Most of the pure English speaking roles at multinationals tend to be senior roles where local knowledge is not required, but they do expect previous experience in the area. So I expect you need a certain amount of luck to swing it.

Regardless, I suggest you should plan on it taking say three to five months to find what you are looking for and plan your finances accordingly.
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Old 16.12.2016, 23:53
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

Thank you for the detailed response Jim2007. I had an interesting conversation with a specialist career advisor based in Switzerland and she got me a little worried that employers are getting a little bit concerned with taking on new hires from UK.




On
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Old 17.12.2016, 00:03
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

On the positive side I do work for a swiss parented company (global organisation but small to medium in the UK) but unfortunately they will not allow me to leave UK to work in Switzerland as there is too much risk for them if I left here, so whilst there are opportunities internally, I cannot take advantage of them.


My accounting qualification is recognised in Switzerland but I will need to brush up on some of the more international laws which is fine, however I think the two biggest current obstacles for me will be deficiency in 2nd language (French) and potentially the fall out from no one really knowing what's going to happen because of brexit.


Current plan is to come out in April, spend 3 - 6 months looking for work and hopefully something will come up. I think its a risk worth taking for a new experience!!
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Old 17.12.2016, 00:21
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

If I can say one thing to the OP, and to the many, many people who post similar questions here, it would be this: work out what it would take for a Swiss employer to go for you, rather than for a skilled local.

Maybe you're a multilinguist; maybe you have specialised knowledge in Swiss-UK accountancy practices; maybe you've worked for major global firms and have great strategic insights; whatever.

If you're a standard UK accountant who simply fancies the idea of working in Switzerland (for quite understandable reasons), then be realistic and strategic. Think of reasons why a company here would pay to bring you over. Then create those things.

Alternatively, marry a Swiss person.
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Old 17.12.2016, 09:03
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

1) You will need to get your qualifications recognised.

You are an accountant or auditor and would like to obtain authorisation to work in Switzerland?

Contact:

Federal Audit Oversight Authority (FAOA)
Case postale 6023
CH-3001 Bern
T +41 31 560 22 22

2) If the UK leaves the EU then it's likely that the UK will be treated by Switzerland as a Third State country which means an employer would have to prove they couldn't find a Swiss/EU national to do the job. This would be the case even if you already have a permit as the conditions for getting that permit would have changed. Non-EU hiring rules are here:

https://www.sem.admin.ch/sem/en/home...zulassung.html

It will cost the company time and money to prove this so they could opt for the easier option of simply letting you go and hiring someone else.

3) There's no guarantee you'd be able to stay here long term unless you become well integrated. The Swiss government is currently looking at all the permit types with a view to encouraging integration and if you don't then you could find even a C permit - which is at the moment a permanent one - downgraded or possibly revoked.

Integration, might apply also to 'C' permit holders

You need to realise that anywhere you may move to in the EU/EFTA could have the same problems with residency once the UK's status changes.

You can come to Switzerland to look for work for up to 3 months without registering as being resident. After that you must register and you'll get an L permit for another 3 months to allow you to continue your search. The permit can be extended for up to a year in 3 monthly periods, providing you have sufficient funds to support yourself while doing so.

You need to be aware that your NHS EHIC card will cover you for emergency treatment only here for those first 3 months so any other medical needs will have to come out of your own pocket. Once you register you're required to get Swiss health insurance - you will have 3 months to do this, but would end up with a big first invoice if you leave it too long as you're covered from the date you registered so the policy would be backdated to then.
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Old 17.12.2016, 14:45
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

Thank you for all the information Meda Fleecestealer, I will be sure to follow up on your lead re the FAOA.


Also great to know that EHIC will cover me for the first 3 months.


In reality I suspect that this whole Brexit situation will drag on for years which I guess makes it even more likely for potential employers in Switzerland to be nervous about employing people from the UK.


Does anyone know if there is an official list that details which skills and qualifications are attractive for Switzerland?
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Old 17.12.2016, 17:24
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

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Thank you for all the information Meda Fleecestealer, I will be sure to follow up on your lead re the FAOA.


Also great to know that EHIC will cover me for the first 3 months.


In reality I suspect that this whole Brexit situation will drag on for years which I guess makes it even more likely for potential employers in Switzerland to be nervous about employing people from the UK.


Does anyone know if there is an official list that details which skills and qualifications are attractive for Switzerland?
No list, it is not "state" run here.

Quite frankly, as other have mentioned, what are you offering that is not already available here ?

Once you've decided that then maybe you stand a chance but until then i fear it will be difficult as i presume you are not looking at a junior or entry level position
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Old 17.12.2016, 17:44
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Re: Considering a move to Switzerland

It'll be a whole lot easier than people here are making out. Switzerland is highly unlikely to revoke permits for people that already have them, and until Brexit happens, the whole permit thing is a non issue for a Brit. So just find the job you want, that your strengths make you a likely candidate for, and apply, being sure to note that you're EU and can get a permit without a fuss.
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