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Old 08.05.2020, 16:26
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IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

What are the best paying companies to do contracting for in Switzerland?

Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

My impression is banking CS/UBS/JulisBaar/Vontobel still have the best offer but pharma starts matching it from Roche/Novartis. Or Telecom with swisscom/upc
I gave up on Google/Facebook they are just too complicated/demanding to interview with. They love PhD's and ivy-league too much.

#1 What do you think pays the best?
#2 I see day rates start being capped at 850chf? Where before it could hit the 1200chf? What do you think? (a ton of offers at 500 which makes a permanent position better)

Ps. Let's not discuss major outliers or emotional stuff about passion


Thank you
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Old 08.05.2020, 16:43
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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I gave up on Google/Facebook they are just too complicated/demanding to interview with. They love PhD's and ivy-league too much.
Really?
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Old 08.05.2020, 17:24
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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What are the best paying companies to do contracting for in Switzerland?

Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom
Most big companies have a score card, and a developer will have a mark on that scorecard, and that is all they will pay, managers hands are tied to that rate.
A developer for Pharma has a rate @800-900, sometimes more.

Pharma will use an agency, so they want their cut, hence you see the 500-600 rates.
The golden days of IT contractors getting 1400/1600 are gone, and although occasionally those rates to come up, it's rare.
You are competing with Indian outsourcers who can place a guy here onsite at @ <600 with zero hassle, and replace him at the drop of hat if needed.

You need to be niche/specialised to get 'good' rates nowadays.
That's my opinion anyway.
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Old 08.05.2020, 17:53
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

It’s not a matter of industry- it’s a question how desirable the job is. The more prestigious the company, the lower the pay. Simple example: the large famous banks will push the rates with their agencies far more than the niche firm struggling to get the talent.

The newer the technology, the „hotter“ the topic - the worse you will be paid. A dead end job with outdated technology in a bank nobody cares about typically would pay best in the short run. Anyone paying more than 800 a day to an agent must have a reason to do so.
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Old 08.05.2020, 17:57
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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I gave up on Google/Facebook they are just too complicated/demanding to interview with. They love PhD's and ivy-league too much
You're mistaken here. For generic developer roles they actually don't give a single f/ck about your degree and school anymore. What really counts is if you can crack leetcode-style interview questions on whiteboard under pressure in 40 minutes.

For more specialized roles like AI/ML they do still care. Apple, Facebook and Microsoft in Zurich actually have rather small engineering offices seeking exactly this type of talent for AR/VR and self driving. But not Google, they are too big and hire everyone and their uncle, as long as you have a pulse and can crack the coding interview questions. (Or should I say, "were hiring", covid screwed up advertisement companies big time)

Last edited by spark; 08.05.2020 at 20:41.
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Old 08.05.2020, 19:58
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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What are the best paying companies to do contracting for in Switzerland?

Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom
I've had top rate jobs at all three. Are you actually good at what you do? Shouldn't be a problem then.
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Old 08.05.2020, 20:12
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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small engineering offices seeking exactly this type of talent for AR/VR and self driving.
Autonomous driving? I'm interested. Where? In Zurich?
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Old 08.05.2020, 20:24
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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Autonomous driving?
Yes, Apple's Special Project. They have a group here in Zurich working on imitation learning, reporting to Goodfellow (in US).

Beware you won't get a job there with just your algorithm-fu like at Google. They are hunting after people experienced in CV and reinforcement learning. Ideal candidate would have just finished their PhD at ETH.

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Where? In Zurich?
Hardturmstrasse 131, 5th floor, last time I was there. But they said they might be moving
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Old 08.05.2020, 20:58
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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I've had top rate jobs at all three. Are you actually good at what you do? Shouldn't be a problem then.
Yeah i get the rates, but see them dropping, while my skill is increase, and i have 45 year old collage that get same rate as a 35yo . Never said yes to below 700 but i see a downward trend. And as @CodPeace mention you can feel this score card mentality. The price is that price and if you don't like it they find another one. I guess it's good for younger devs but the experienced don't get much extra for their significant experience.
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Old 08.05.2020, 20:59
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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The golden days of IT contractors getting 1400/1600 are gone, and although occasionally those rates to come up, it's rare.
Nah, they were at best the bronze days...

The late 80s - no foreigners, no agents, no O/T restrictions and 200 - 275 hourly rates.
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Old 08.05.2020, 21:02
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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You're mistaken here. For generic developer roles they actually don't give a single f/ck about your degree and school anymore. What really counts is if you can crack leetcode-style interview questions on whiteboard under pressure in 40 minutes.

For more specialized roles like AI/ML they do still care. Apple, Facebook and Microsoft in Zurich actually have rather small engineering offices seeking exactly this type of talent for AR/VR and self driving. But not Google, they are too big and hire everyone and their uncle, as long as you have a pulse and can crack the coding interview questions. (Or should I say, "were hiring", covid screwed up advertisement companies big time)
Yeah cracking leetcode-style questions is the key there, which is one of the reasons i gave up on them, it seems so pointless. Never understood why they hire like this. Maybe it's easy automate and generate constant data on, would like to know how their HR is designed. Regarding the AR/VR/AI/ML i assume they a looking for the ETH guys that are deep into very niche topic. To me a bit risky to put all you market value into one niche skill. But of course it make you rare with a big upside when you are also needed by the bigtech.
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Old 08.05.2020, 21:15
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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Yeah cracking leetcode-style questions is the key there, which is one of the reasons i gave up on them, it seems so pointless
The point is $$$. You won't get this kind of money elsewhere in Zurich as a dev. And it's much faster to study for these questions than do a PhD
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Old 09.05.2020, 08:41
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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...i have 45 year old collage...
Did it at school, did you?
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Old 10.05.2020, 08:00
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

A recently advertised job (though an agency) for an on-site (no remote work) dev at one of the pharma companies was offering 800chf/day all-in (while asking for what i would rate as mid-level skills)
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Old 10.05.2020, 09:46
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

I would say Pharma. Basically these days I find that industry in general including Pharma is not only paying better but has the more exciting work.
Have never been at a Telecom though but have heard they pay the least.
Also banks these days seem to pay by the day. In the industry it is still by the hour. Makes a difference.
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Old 10.05.2020, 21:41
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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I would say Pharma. Basically these days I find that industry in general including Pharma is not only paying better but has the more exciting work.
Have never been at a Telecom though but have heard they pay the least.
Also banks these days seem to pay by the day. In the industry it is still by the hour. Makes a difference.
Who do you think is most demanding(pressuring) of banks and pharma? I've heard pharma is very demanding in general, not sure if it's also like that in the IT side of things.
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Old 15.05.2020, 19:23
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Re: IT contracting - Banking vs Pharma vs Telecom

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Who do you think is most demanding(pressuring) of banks and pharma? I've heard pharma is very demanding in general, not sure if it's also like that in the IT side of things.
That all depends more on your project leader and line manager.
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