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  #21  
Old 07.01.2020, 10:48
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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How was I emotional and silly? I am speaking from personal experience where I was the foreigner who was lowballed.

I am currently working with lowballed foreign colleagues and see the bitterness and hardships that face amongst their well paid local colleagues who do the same job they do. I understand the OP's situation, but don't make it seem as easy as you do. It is hard to get any offer in Switzerland, but it is also hard to stay in the job market once you are here. Perhaps he won't be able to find better opportunities later and he will be low paid and marginalised in a foreign country. Spain's culture is also very different to Switzerland's. All things he/she should consider...
Really... and was the situation where you came from like the OP's where he is earning a salary that makes 70-80k in Switzerland extremely attractive?

No-one is saying anything is "easy", that's why I talked about making short-term sacrifices for long-term goals. There are almost always better opportunities for experienced developers who know their stuff and keep their skills relevant and up to date and if you say otherwise you really have no clue what you are talking about... it is one of if not the most in-demand jobs in the technology industry.

It's not a shot in the dark to say that moving from 30k EUR in Spain to 70-80k in Switzerland will improve your quality of life, regardless of cultural differences. It's not a shot in the dark to say that once you get here and get established that you can find a new job. It's not a shot in the dark to say that coming to Switzerland and making smart choices can lead to a dramatic improvement in your life situation and future prospects. These are all not only possible, but also veering towards likely if you play it smart.

There is a large Spanish community in Zurich (yes I know he will be near Luzern but it's not so far away for weekends) who LOVE living here and despite what I read on this forum it is a fun place for singles of both sexes as long as you have some social skills. Also as mentioned he will be able to ski to his hearts content as well as the many other things the Swiss landscape offers. Not to mention the many big expat activity groups that mean it's very hard to be bored or loonely on weekends.
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  #22  
Old 07.01.2020, 11:24
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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Really... and was the situation where you came from like the OP's where he is earning a salary that makes 70-80k in Switzerland extremely attractive?
Yes, exactly the same - except I'm not from Spain. We moved during the 2008 economic crash in the US making the exact same salary as OP. It worked out well for us, but only after a very hard initial period. (It also made it easier to have one half of the family with a Swiss passport and the language skills/contacts to find another job quickly.)

I'm a big believer of short term suffering for long term gain...but every situation is different, it is just good for the OP to be aware of the potential downsides of his/her decision. We learned a lot from this awful initial experience and are lucky to have gotten ahead despite the circumstances.
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  #23  
Old 07.01.2020, 11:27
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

Apparently in my previous company we were all underpaid, including Swiss employees

Jokes aside, assuming people are really underpaid, a couple of pros and cons:

[C] feeling underpaid is bad, period
[C] companies underpaying the employees will likely not limit themselves to keeping the salaries low, just because their concept of "normal levels" is constantly adjusting
[C] "you are worth what you are paid for", and people will treat you differently if they are paying you a lot (confirmation bias or something similar; sad but often true)
[C] being underpaid makes it difficult to save quickly enough to finance things like bringing your woman in CH, or having a child, or taking some extra education (a couple of hours of German in the weekend can end up costing 1000 CHF per month)

[P] the first year you don't care and you don't feel it, you're just happy to be here and busy integrating yourself in the system to care about how much more you could get
[P] the first year you have a price shock and you save like crazy anyways, just to see where's the bar
[P] if you manage to live OK with what you get, you may still be underpaid but you won't have much frustration

Overall, without knowing the OP's real qualifications and what the job actually is, I don't know if 70k/y is fair, but I think it's manageable for a newcomer. He can settle, study some German, and if he really feels he's not happy after 12/18 months he can start looking around for new jobs and ask for more. If the contract is open-ended he'll get a 5 years B permit, giving him enough time to think about the future.

Or, if he does well, he can also ask for a raise at the end of the first year, with the attitude "My work is good and I like the company. First round has been on me, now let's straight things up"
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  #24  
Old 07.01.2020, 11:30
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

It is as much about employment law as opportunity. I wouldnt see too many swiss people working for that kind of salary for a developer position, why should foreigners be on lower salaries ? if it was a different salary for men vs woman there would be outcry, the same standard should exist for local vs foreigner.

A cleaner is on around 50k in switzerland. Software development is a significantly higher skill category. It is an employer trying to take advantage of a naive foreign prospect.
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  #25  
Old 07.01.2020, 11:31
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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Yes, exactly the same - except I'm not from Spain. We moved during the 2008 economic crash in the US making the exact same salary as OP. It worked out well for us, but only after a very hard initial period. (It also made it easier to have one half of the family with a Swiss passport and the language skills/contacts to find another job quickly.)

I'm a big believer of short term suffering for long term gain...but every situation is different, it is just good for the OP to be aware of the potential downsides of his/her decision. We learned a lot from this awful initial experience and are lucky to have gotten ahead despite the circumstances.
So you and your other half came here on an 70-80k salary per person (as in, each)?
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  #26  
Old 07.01.2020, 11:41
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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Hello to all, this is my first message in this forum. I have read it deeply with many interest.

I have been offered a position as Software Engineer (qml/C++) in the canton of Nidwalden, with 4 years experience and a gross annual salary of 70000 CHF. No bonus, no benefits, no nothing, that is all.

I'm reading incomes of more than 100000 CHF for this position, but in the big cities of Zurich, Bern, Geneva, etc. I don't now if those quantities can be reached in "provinces", far from big cities.

I am very new in Swtzerland and I'm afraid of being fooled, because i read glassdoor and any senior engineer, from any field, appears to be close to 100k CHF in the companies from this canton.

Anyway, on the other hand, I have checked in lohncomputer that this salary is enough to live without problems in this canton or besides cantons. I could rent a flat with parking outside of Luzern for about 1000 CHF/month, which is not bad at all, and still would have around 2000 CHF free per month after discounting taxes and expenses. Of course, this is much more better than my actual job in Italy, no mention to my previous job in Spain which was ridiculous compared with 70K CHF.

Well, my idea is to move to Switzerland accepting this offer, and after several months, with some German language skills learnt and realized about the work panorama, trying to find a better position. As we say in Spain "A seamless plan".

What do you think? Should I press for more money? Would you go on with my plan?

Regards.
no harm in asking for more money. also what's your best alternative to accepting this offer?

hard to say if 70k is underpaid without knowing the details of the job.

if you don't have a better offer, i'd take it, get to know switzerland, get the permit and be in a better position to get another higher paying job.
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  #27  
Old 07.01.2020, 11:46
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

I didn't read Susie_Q's postings as being about entitlement. Of course you need to play along with the market and that may mean accepting to be underpayed if you can't find anything better. Lots of people are in that situation. At the end of the day we are all as individuals responsible for what we are prepared to accept and what we are prepared to do to stand up for our interests. There is no black and white or right and wrong. Injustice and entitlement are very relative terms.

But it's typically not a pleasant situation to be in. And especiall in IT, jobs are not that scarce, and I think the OP has a fair chance of getting better, if not now, then in the next couple of years.

That said I know of several people who are clearly underpayed but don't actually want more. They enjoy being able to muddle along rather than having to continuously fulfill the high expectations that come with a high salary, preferring to save up that energy for things they really enjoy in their free time. Good on them. Not everybody lives for their work. It's personal choices. Maybe this is one of those jobs?
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  #28  
Old 07.01.2020, 12:01
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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Hello to all, this is my first message in this forum. I have read it deeply with many interest.

Anyway, on the other hand, I have checked in lohncomputer that this salary is enough to live without problems in this canton or besides cantons. I could rent a flat with parking outside of Luzern for about 1000 CHF/month, which is not bad at all, and still would have around 2000 CHF free per month after discounting taxes and expenses. Of course, this is much more better than my actual job in Italy, no mention to my previous job in Spain which was ridiculous compared with 70K CHF.

Regards.
From the 2000/ that remain per month, 600-1000/ will go on average on paying the car and the related expenses.
keep in mind that 3000/ CHF in Switzerland allow for the same expenses as 600-700 EUR in Madrid for example.

Changing car tires: 70-100 CHF
one beer: 5-6 CHF
one sandwich: 7 CHF

some few hundred for every flight back home to Spain.

Last edited by memihai; 07.01.2020 at 13:35.
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Old 07.01.2020, 12:04
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

taking into account what you've posted, I'd express great inteerst in accepting the position, but asking if there is anyway the salary offer could be increased, perhaps by way of end year bonus, or 13th month.

If they are firm (and they will likely be) on their offer, then I'd graciously accept it, and after a year start to look for a new position using an agency who has both their and your interest at heart. Higher salary for you means higher fee for them and agency is also in a better position to negotiate for you.
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Old 07.01.2020, 12:28
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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Well, my idea is to move to Switzerland accepting this offer, and after several months, with some German language skills learnt and realized about the work panorama, trying to find a better position. As we say in Spain "A seamless plan".
It's not that easy for people outside the country to find work. But if you don't have much hope of work where you are (or have some weird desperate need to come to Switzerland), then any job here could be the first step into far better work.
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  #31  
Old 07.01.2020, 12:37
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

The answer is always complicated.

I came in 2011 with a little more than that if we consider Zurich is more expensive (in Zurich flats below 1800/2000 is not possible) and today i am way above 200% of that.

On the other side nobody can put you super targets with 70k/year. What would be great to learn new technologies, MBA, learn german.

If you ask 100k can happen same as hot shots i have seen here that asked for 140k:

10 hours/day, no billable overtime, and any mistake bye bye
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  #32  
Old 07.01.2020, 12:41
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

it takes a special person who can just suck it up and not be bothered that that idiot fresh out of uni with no experience at all is earning 10's of thousands more then you, or even the post boy earns more, keeping your eyes on the bigger prize in the future.

being lowballed sucks, having everyone else in the office know you've been lowballed and accepted it sucks even more, you'll get no respect.
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Old 07.01.2020, 13:00
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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being lowballed sucks, having everyone else in the office know you've been lowballed and accepted it sucks even more, you'll get no respect.
Genau, which is exactly what my husband faced. Him and all of the other "auslanders" were somehow treated differently/less seriously. It was a flat out disrespectful environment, which was hard for him to handle without punching a few smug idiots in the face. It was a horrible company...as companies who tend to universally take advantage of others in lesser positions tend to be.

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So you and your other half came here on an 70-80k salary per person (as in, each)?
No, on one salary in strong hope I would most likely be employed quickly. Which I was, making significantly more in a lower level position than my highly qualified husband who speaks six languages.
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  #34  
Old 07.01.2020, 13:08
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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it takes a special person who can just suck it up and not be bothered that that idiot fresh out of uni with no experience at all is earning 10's of thousands more then you, or even the post boy earns more, keeping your eyes on the bigger prize in the future.

being lowballed sucks, having everyone else in the office know you've been lowballed and accepted it sucks even more, you'll get no respect.
If by a "special kind of person" you mean a person who lives in an EU country on a low salary with no other comparable options who would still massively benefit from a comparatively lower salary vs his peers in Switzerland then yeah... I guess it does take a "special kind of person". Isn't speaking from an already advantageous position great?

Not everyone has the luxury of being able to raise their hand and casually waft away a permanent job offer in Switzerland, even if it means being paid 20-30k less than others doing the same role. Such offers also do not grow on trees for the vast majority of the millions-strong EU workforce, given the size of the country and the limited capacity for new hires within Switzerland. The OP can come here earning still far more than he did in Spain and use that time to gain experience and when he has a foot in the door to ultimately find a new job if he so chooses.

Sometimes you need to take the bull by the horns and do what you've got to do and I absolutely reject your overly-simplistic BS about his colleagues "not respecting him" because they have a suspicion that he is paid less. Not only are you assuming that everyone in that workplace is an utter ****, but to a large extent a person is treated and respected based on their character, conduct and performance and he may impress them to the point where they want to improve his prospects after a year or so. Also, spending too much time worrying about the perceived respect of your colleagues is also a petty and trivial first-world concern when weighed against the prospect of improving your entire life by taking one less than ideal job.

This is absolutely basic logic and while I know that will go in one of your virtual ears and out of the other, I had to respond for the benefit of the OP.

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No, on one salary in strong hope I would most likely be employed quickly. Which I was, making significantly more in a lower level position than my highly qualified husband who speaks six languages.
Ok, so basically your own situation was in reality NOTHING LIKE THE OP's who is single with no dependents and who will not be splitting his salary between two people. Time to put you on ignore I think so I don't waste any more time replying to your attention-seeking nonsense.
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Old 07.01.2020, 13:27
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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If by a "special kind of person" you mean a person who lives in an EU country on a low salary with no other comparable options who would still massively benefit from a comparatively lower salary vs his peers in Switzerland then yeah... I guess it does take a "special kind of person". Isn't speaking from an already advantageous position great?

Not everyone has the luxury of being able to raise their hand and casually waft away a permanent job offer in Switzerland, even if it means being paid 20-30k less than others doing the same role. Such offers also do not grow on trees for the vast majority of the millions-strong EU workforce, given the size of the country and the limited capacity for new hires within Switzerland. The OP can come here earning still far more than he did in Spain and use that time to gain experience and when he has a foot in the door to ultimately find a new job if he so chooses.

Sometimes you need to take the bull by the horns and do what you've got to do and I absolutely reject your overly-simplistic BS about his colleagues "not respecting him" because they have a suspicion that he is paid less. Not only are you assuming that everyone in that workplace is an utter ****, but to a large extent a person is treated and respected based on their character, conduct and performance and he may impress them to the point where they want to improve his prospects after a year or so. Also, spending too much time worrying about the perceived respect of your colleagues is also a petty and trivial first-world concern when weighed against the prospect of improving your entire life by taking one less than ideal job.

This is absolutely basic logic and while I know that will go in one of your virtual ears and out of the other, I had to respond for the benefit of the OP.



Ok, so basically your own situation was in reality NOTHING LIKE THE OP's who is single with no dependents and who will not be splitting his salary between two people. Time to put you on ignore I think so I don't waste any more time replying to your attention-seeking nonsense.
IT is fourth in the list of professions with a skills shortage in switzerland (https://lenews.ch/2019/12/04/switzer...rtage-worsens/).

It's also a dangerous path to go down saying people from outside switzerland are 'ok' to accept a lower salary than a local would for the same position. Would it also be ok for a woman to have to accept a lower position than a man for a job ? Someone of a different appearance ? If there is a difference in ability, you can price accordingly. If you are offering a different salary based on other criteria, (the applicants location in this case, you are on thin ice from an employment perspective. If you do the job at a nearshore location or offshore, fine cut them down by half, but the same job at the same location just based on the applicants profile - not good.
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Old 07.01.2020, 13:28
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

I'd always thought "respect" was something you show for others, and others show for you, regardless of wealth, religion, food choices, with whom you share the bed, .....etc.

Now I know respect is something you're not entitled to when you fail to negotiate 20-30K of salary

PS. confrontation is a great way to be respected, or at least feared, in the office
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Old 07.01.2020, 13:30
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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Ok, so basically your own situation was in reality NOTHING LIKE THE OP's who is single with no dependents and who will not be splitting his salary between two people. Time to put you on ignore I think so I don't waste any more time replying to your attention-seeking nonsense.
You are hilarious, aw that's too bad - I love chuckling at how "frustrated incel" like I get you.

I was not a dependent to my husband, our problems with the move were not purely financial as I very clearly explained. But OK, please put whatever scenario in your head you prefer seeing and keep being pedantic.

Every situation is different, but many have similarities. I am giving advice based upon my experience. It isn't all about money as others have stated...one can get used to the better salary quite quickly, but the daily marginalisation and bad work environment, not so much.
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Old 07.01.2020, 13:47
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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I'd always thought "respect" was something you show for others, and others show for you, regardless of wealth, religion, food choices, with whom you share the bed, .....etc.

Now I know respect is something you're not entitled to when you fail to negotiate 20-30K of salary

PS. confrontation is a great way to be respected, or at least feared, in the office
Spot on. This has nothing to do with the "respect" you wouldn't get anyway from a certain type of people - possibly for one of the reasons you mentioned above.

But it's not a fair offer for OP's skills and experience. Why should he accept it? Look more. Once here it's not that easy to change jobs in my experience. Or at least not for significantly better positions.

Except the PS. You don't gain respect by confrontation/being confrontational, you get respect by being a decent team player.

Last edited by greenmount; 07.01.2020 at 14:03.
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  #39  
Old 07.01.2020, 14:02
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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loads of waffle
being poorly paid here is no different to being poorly paid in op's home country, a well paid job in spain gives you just as much spending power as a well paid job in any other country, so really no idea what point you're trying to make except getting in a few more insults on me (I live rent free in your head)

Throwing in a half decent job in spain to come here for a (sorry) shit paid job makes no sense at all, we all know how silly expensive things are here and salaries are all relative, and yes, from a totally selfish point of view having waves of people come in willing to do jobs for half the 'normal' rate does no one any favors, coming from someone who's lived through various waves of this happening in IT 30 odd years I've been doing this shit.
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Old 07.01.2020, 14:16
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Re: job offer: 70000 CHF as software engineer, what are your thoughts?

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I'd always thought "respect" was something you show for others, and others show for you, regardless of wealth, religion, food choices, with whom you share the bed, .....etc.
The lack of respect comes from the fact that you totally low ball and untercut the other employees. Threatining their job and income. If the new, young guy does an as good job as the old ones making 20k - 30k more than they have to fear to be sacked and be replaced soon. Wage dumping is selfish and shortsighted. Neiter is it a respectable activity nor does it show care for others.
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