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Old 30.06.2020, 09:49
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Frustrated with Swiss employer

I am writing this to vent out my frustration about the Swiss employer and caution for others not to do the same mistake.

I am on dependent, non-EU permit and specialized in IT. I was lucky to have two job offers after a struggle of 6 months. First, I joined one Enterprise employer for an 11-month contract. Soon, I got another offer from a small company for long term contract (with 3 months probation). Considering the tenure, I quit the Enterprise employer and joined the small one.

The company had given a very vague job description and did not technically evaluate me in the interview. On joining, I came to know that their project got delayed. They asked me to work on new technical skills and put me on training and relevant project work. I worked 70 hours/ week for the last 2 months to satisfy their requirements. I was able to complete all the project work in time (though not using the best methods, as I was learning and implementing). But the employer called and told me that I am not matching their expectations and I cant continue after probation. They expect me to be a superman with all the new technologies.

My all dreams got shattered! Being a non-EU, it is almost impossible to find a new job, especially during the pandemic times. After working for 15 years with large MNCs, my career has halted abruptly. I know there is no solution to my issue but learnt that there is certainly a darker, insensitive side of the Swiss employer. I am willing to leave this country forever.
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Old 30.06.2020, 10:04
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

That's why it's called probation time.
Normal in Switzerland.
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Old 30.06.2020, 10:07
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

I'm really sorry for your situation, however:

'The company had given a very vague job description and did not technically evaluate me in the interview'

I guess this is a lesson for the future. This should have been a huge warning flag and you probably should have 'run a mile'

I'm sure a lot of us have ended up with jobs that weren't 'as advertised'. Trust me, it's not the end of the world. It may sting a little now, but you will come through.
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Old 30.06.2020, 10:08
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

That's really frustrating.


I'm also in between jobs and yes, coronavirus has made people slower to hire. However, it's easing up now.



I can only encourage you to keep networking and talk to people. Most jobs go via direct contact/work of mouth rather than advertising in the newspaper.


there are lots of threads on the forum here about english-focused employers and creative ways to find jobs.


The long-term key is language. Having fluency in the local language is a huge asset, and worth focusing on.



Join some meetup or local sport groups. My husband's sporting team is full of IT professionals and university researchers with really great networks.



Clearly there is work out there (you found two employers already who gave you job offers) - but yes, it's really frustrating when it's not the right 'fit' or does not work out the way you hoped.
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Old 30.06.2020, 11:10
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

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My all dreams got shattered! Being a non-EU, it is almost impossible to find a new job, especially during the pandemic times. After working for 15 years with large MNCs, my career has halted abruptly. I know there is no solution to my issue but learnt that there is certainly a darker, insensitive side of the Swiss employer. I am willing to leave this country forever.
Getting fired sucks Been there, set a deadline of a few days to let it pass. Some things are only fixed with time.

The sad part is that employers are doing really bad stuff because of the virus. The son of a colleague got fired effective on June 30th because the development project was not going to be financed anymore....then asked to come back by end of August to continue working on the project. Almost as if the company wanted to avoid paying vacations. The curious thing is that this company is an online shop, presumably the few business who not only were not affected by the virus, even profited from it.
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Old 30.06.2020, 12:14
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I'm really sorry for your situation, however:

'The company had given a very vague job description and did not technically evaluate me in the interview'

I guess this is a lesson for the future. This should have been a huge warning flag and you probably should have 'run a mile'

I'm sure a lot of us have ended up with jobs that weren't 'as advertised'. Trust me, it's not the end of the world. It may sting a little now, but you will come through.
Yes, this is indeed a lesson for me and for everyone. When I had discussed with my friends, mentors before switching to this company, everyone suggested that this is a Swiss company. They don't have a culture of hire & fire like a US company. Learnt a lesson to be extra cautious.

Thanks for the encouragement!

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Getting fired sucks Been there, set a deadline of a few days to let it pass. Some things are only fixed with time.

The sad part is that employers are doing really bad stuff because of the virus. The son of a colleague got fired effective on June 30th because the development project was not going to be financed anymore....then asked to come back by end of August to continue working on the project. Almost as if the company wanted to avoid paying vacations. The curious thing is that this company is an online shop, presumably the few business who not only were not affected by the virus, even profited from it.
Thanks! I have observed that the Swiss employers get creative in saving their profits.

Last edited by 3Wishes; 30.06.2020 at 20:58. Reason: merging consecutive replies
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Old 30.06.2020, 12:40
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

I wish you all the best and hope that you can find some other job soon. IT is still in demand, despite covid and outsourcing trends.

I know that some small Swiss companies can be "creative" with the employers, we joked that it's what "agile" really means... This aspect is probably not too different from other countries.
On the good side, if you find a not-perfect-but-decent company the contracts in CH are usually open-ended and the pay is ok, and after a few years you can start looking around in a dynamic job market.

Let it go, and prepare yourself for a new start
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Old 30.06.2020, 13:48
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

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'The company had given a very vague job description and did not technically evaluate me in the interview'

I guess this is a lesson for the future. This should have been a huge warning flag and you probably should have 'run a mile'
Quite honestly, this seems to be the norm these days. I am now in my second role in a row where my actual job is much different than my job title or description. The second time, I made sure that I had a specific job description on hand before I accepted, and I am still in the same boat. Other colleagues who have also started in even higher positions than mine are experiencing the same.

OP, I am so very sorry. If you can, get on the phone and email to every job agency service you can. Kelley Services, Straumann, CTC, Hays Schweiz etc..

I wish you the very best. We all take risks in life, don't be hard on yourself.
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Old 30.06.2020, 14:47
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

Hi Alexandra. I am sorry to hear you are about to lose your job. As a non-EU, can you stay here if you cannot find a job right away? Can you fall back on RAV? If not, can you maybe negotiate with the current employer a 3 month term to increase your chances of finding another job?
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Old 30.06.2020, 15:02
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

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everyone suggested that this is a Swiss company. They don't have a culture of hire & fire like a US company.
US companies don't have a culture of hire and fire, unlike here.

Tom
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Old 30.06.2020, 15:19
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

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US companies don't have a culture of hire and fire, unlike here.

Tom
When was the last time you worked there Tom?
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Old 30.06.2020, 15:38
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Hi Alexandra. I am sorry to hear you are about to lose your job. As a non-EU, can you stay here if you cannot find a job right away? Can you fall back on RAV? If not, can you maybe negotiate with the current employer a 3 month term to increase your chances of finding another job?
I am on a dependent visa so I can stay as long as my husband's visa is valid.

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I wish you all the best and hope that you can find some other job soon. IT is still in demand, despite covid and outsourcing trends.

I know that some small Swiss companies can be "creative" with the employers, we joked that it's what "agile" really means... This aspect is probably not too different from other countries.
On the good side, if you find a not-perfect-but-decent company the contracts in CH are usually open-ended and the pay is ok, and after a few years you can start looking around in a dynamic job market.

Let it go, and prepare yourself for a new start
Thanks for your encouragement!

Last edited by 3Wishes; 30.06.2020 at 20:58. Reason: merging consecutive replies
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Old 30.06.2020, 20:27
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

That reminds me...
Attached Thumbnails
frustrated-swiss-employer-dilbert_training_agile_programming.png  
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Old 04.07.2020, 11:23
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Tell them you are not their slave and this is not fair.

Just move on ASAP. They have accomplished what they’ve set out to achieve. To get you out of the job market.

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US companies don't have a culture of hire and fire, unlike here.

Tom
Well you are obviously not in touch with the continent then. Switzerland lags behind the U.S in many aspects. They both have a fire culture. U.S. work culture is work, work, work.

Last edited by roegner; 04.07.2020 at 11:56. Reason: Merging consecutive posts
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Old 04.07.2020, 15:09
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

it sucks that it happened to you, but most companies don't do hire and fire for skilled employees because they know it costs a lot of money before someone is trained and really productive.

I guess a big problem here is that they had no idea themselves of what you were supposed to accomplish.
They hired you for something that they didn't end up doing.

It's frustrating when you are trying to start your career in Switzerland, but at some point you hit the good spot and it becomes much easier (local language knowledge is a prerequisite).
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Old 04.07.2020, 15:38
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

What is an Enterprise company? And what tenure was considered?
And why should a company evaluate a potential employee before hire?
Personally I hate IT quiz interviews.
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Old 04.07.2020, 18:17
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

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Tell them you are not their slave and this is not fair.
Best not to do this. It's fine to politely express your regret, that's all. Switzerland is a small country, made smaller yet by the language areas, and each professional field is a sub-culture. Over the years, it is very likely that, sooner or later, one meets up with someone from a former employer, be it in a course, at a workshop, or in a new company. People remember how you made them feel.
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Old 04.07.2020, 20:04
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

"US companies don't have a culture of hire and fire, unlike here".


Try working for a US bank in the City of London. They have a totally sh1t reputation for the way they treat their staff. When I worked in the City I knew a secretary in a US bank who was fired on Christmas Eve because she refused to work late (public transport winds down early and she didn't know how she'd get home).
I also new another one who worked for a senior guy in a US bank. When his wife went away anywhere he'd take his dirty laundry to the office and expect his secretary to launder it for him at home over the weekend!
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Old 04.07.2020, 20:33
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

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And why should a company evaluate a potential employee before hire?
Personally I hate IT quiz interviews.
Should they just hire anyone based on what they say their skills are then? Of course they should ask technical questions. Otherwise how would they know if the candidate is a good fit?
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Old 04.07.2020, 22:27
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Re: Frustrated with Swiss employer

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Should they just hire anyone based on what they say their skills are then? Of course they should ask technical questions. Otherwise how would they know if the candidate is a good fit?
According to OP, they didn't ask technical questions though.
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