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Old 08.09.2021, 10:52
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Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

Dear All,


I currently earn 90k (around 4300/month net) in Munich as a Senior Software Engineer, I wonder how much I should ask for a similar position in Zurich ? I was thinking around +140kCHF.



I did my internship at ETHZ few years ago.
I found few topics comparing Germany and Switzerland but each situation might be different.



Thanks a lot
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Old 08.09.2021, 16:46
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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I currently earn 90k (around 4300/month net) in Munich as a Senior Software Engineer, I wonder how much I should ask for a similar position in Zurich ? I was thinking around +140kCHF.
Compare the net salaries and you might be happy with the same gross in Zrich
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Old 08.09.2021, 17:20
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

I have worked for 20 years in IT, most of it in Zurich. Yes, there are exceptional companies like Google, but unless you are a contractor with all the ups and downs of that... or work in a management position (managing people, not software)... is 140k not impossible, but at the absolute top of the market. 110-120k gross with some form of bonus is standard. Getting a bonus that bumps this up to 140k total is rather rare.
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Old 08.09.2021, 17:41
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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I have worked for 20 years in IT, most of it in Zurich. Yes, there are exceptional companies like Google, but unless you are a contractor with all the ups and downs of that... or work in a management position (managing people, not software)... is 140k not impossible, but at the absolute top of the market. 110-120k gross with some form of bonus is standard. Getting a bonus that bumps this up to 140k total is rather rare.
I have to disagree with this, it depends on what you are working on and for who. Yes tech companies like google offer higher salary ranges, but also you can earn higher salaries for big environment, for financial or pharma, there are several fields.

For a senior position in development or in infrastructure mid range may be around there, but at the higher end salaries for architecture or design it is perfectly normal.
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Old 08.09.2021, 17:54
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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I have to disagree with this, it depends on what you are working on and for who. Yes tech companies like google offer higher salary ranges, but also you can earn higher salaries for big environment, for financial or pharma, there are several fields.

For a senior position in development or in infrastructure mid range may be around there, but at the higher end salaries for architecture or design it is perfectly normal.
But he isnt an architect, he is a senior software engineer. I know the banks in Zurich and had some of the well known pharmas as clients as well. For a 140k perm base salary do you have to offer something more than that: Thats is a "director" level base salary and there are not that many around in IT.

As I said: not impossible but at the top end of the market.
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Old 08.09.2021, 21:14
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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But he isnt an architect, he is a senior software engineer. I know the banks in Zurich and had some of the well known pharmas as clients as well. For a 140k perm base salary do you have to offer something more than that: Thats is a "director" level base salary and there are not that many around in IT.

As I said: not impossible but at the top end of the market.
There are quite a lot of well paid jobs in IT and 140k is not the top of the market by far. For some senior positions in some companies you would might get a fix salary of 200k+ in a specialist role. As mentioned above it depends what you do and who you work for.
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Old 09.09.2021, 07:58
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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There are quite a lot of well paid jobs in IT and 140k is not the top of the market by far. For some senior positions in some companies you would might get a fix salary of 200k+ in a specialist role. As mentioned above it depends what you do and who you work for.
To my knowledge as well. Top of the market is way above 200k.

Firstly, huge number of ETH graduates get into Google (at a time it was around 40% of computer science, I guess it could be less now). Also there are many other companies that pay well for specialist roles, even some Swiss companies such as Roche.
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Old 09.09.2021, 08:17
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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I have worked for 20 years in IT, most of it in Zurich. Yes, there are exceptional companies like Google, but unless you are a contractor with all the ups and downs of that... or work in a management position (managing people, not software)... is 140k not impossible, but at the absolute top of the market. 110-120k gross with some form of bonus is standard. Getting a bonus that bumps this up to 140k total is rather rare.

You're underpaid... or underpaying.


Standard for what I've been seeing for a senior software engineer without management responsibilities (but specialist in a field) is in the 200k range (base, pre-bonus/perks)
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Old 09.09.2021, 11:31
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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You're underpaid... or underpaying.


Standard for what I've been seeing for a senior software engineer without management responsibilities (but specialist in a field) is in the 200k range (base, pre-bonus/perks)
I am working for an IT services company. In sales. I work on large tenders from banks, pharma and gov institutions. I believe I know the market rates really well... because at least the public ones have to often publish the results - so I dont just see what I am offering, but what the competitors offered as well.

I can see what day rates are normal in Zurich today and I dont even need a calculator to tell you that 140k will be quite difficult and 200k pretty impossible in my business. Sure, might be different if you are a true specialist for some obscure banking software nobody knows how to fix... but we are talking about averages here.

And it looks like I am not the only one thinking that way: https://www.it-markt.ch/news/2020-03...t-branche-2020

Very few jobs get you over the 120k perm base.
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Old 09.09.2021, 11:55
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

Michael Page Switzerland 2021 Salary Survey



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Old 09.09.2021, 12:44
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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Michael Page Switzerland 2021 Salary Survey



and even with this, there are missing components: I work for 15 years at a school as the system administrator with 50 pc's and 8 servers. I work for 15 years at an enterprise of 25000 servers and 250000 desktops as a sysadmin.

Both are sysadmins, the first is probably getting 100k. the second I would say around 150-160.

It depends on the field of business, the size, the complexity, a number of things more than age.
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Old 09.09.2021, 13:26
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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I am working for an IT services company. In sales. I work on large tenders from banks, pharma and gov institutions. I believe I know the market rates really well... because at least the public ones have to often publish the results - so I dont just see what I am offering, but what the competitors offered as well.

I can see what day rates are normal in Zurich today and I dont even need a calculator to tell you that 140k will be quite difficult and 200k pretty impossible in my business. Sure, might be different if you are a true specialist for some obscure banking software nobody knows how to fix... but we are talking about averages here.

And it looks like I am not the only one thinking that way: https://www.it-markt.ch/news/2020-03...t-branche-2020


Very few jobs get you over the 120k perm base.

You have no idea what you are talking about. The numbers you gave in the link are limited and skewed (9600 entries, recommendations, branches using GAVs, etc.)

Surely there are people making so much, but this doesn't mean that "very few jobs get over the 120k perm base". There are fields where companies wait months to fill a position. When you find someone, do you give him the mythical 120k so he moves on at the first better offer or you give him what he asks in order to keep him at least 1-2 years?
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Old 09.09.2021, 13:46
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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You have no idea what you are talking about. The numbers you gave in the link are limited and skewed (9600 entries, recommendations, branches using GAVs, etc.)
Thats probably a lot more actual factual numbers than the ones Michael Page used to come up with rather suspiciously round estimates. And btw: a sample size of 9600 is really large enough to deduct conclusions. Thats how statistics work.

Anyways: I congratulate you all to your 200k jobs. Well done. I am writing this here because newcomers are asking and I want to offer what I think a realistic expectation should be. I dont think anyone who makes 90k in Munich will in the same job with the same sort of responsibilities make 200k here. Not even 150. And if the OP will go into his job interview with a number thats more than 20% over the budget and fairly unrealistic will he not get the job. Simple as that.

But obviously do I not know what I am talking about... so: good luck.
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Old 09.09.2021, 17:01
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

maybe play with this?
https://lohnrechner.ch/
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Old 09.09.2021, 19:49
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

maybe studied the wrong subject?

this is now in high demand:
https://nurse.org/articles/new-york-...19-incentives/
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Old 09.09.2021, 20:03
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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Thats probably a lot more actual factual numbers than the ones Michael Page used to come up with rather suspiciously round estimates. And btw: a sample size of 9600 is really large enough to deduct conclusions. Thats how statistics work.

Anyways: I congratulate you all to your 200k jobs. Well done. I am writing this here because newcomers are asking and I want to offer what I think a realistic expectation should be. I dont think anyone who makes 90k in Munich will in the same job with the same sort of responsibilities make 200k here. Not even 150. And if the OP will go into his job interview with a number thats more than 20% over the budget and fairly unrealistic will he not get the job. Simple as that.

But obviously do I not know what I am talking about... so: good luck.
So back to the original Q, I definitely agree with Treverus that 90k job in Munich is not likely to get you 200k in Zurich. Besides, top jobs are a worldwide market.

Just a feeling tells me 140k, but not knowing details of the type of work and your skillset it is really difficult to say more. Holding multiple offers is usually an advantage. If you can't get multiple offers at this point you can't eye high salaries for the time being.

Many companies have internal recommendations on compensation if you are to more from offices in one city to another. Maybe try to see if any of your friends can give you more information.

@Treverus I know a number of companies (all non-Swiss) paying 150k+ base to fresh CS PhD graduates in Zurich area.
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Old 09.09.2021, 21:32
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

For whatever relevance this may or may not have .

I know a guy in his low 50ies who works in the IT department of a major bank in Zurich . So no contractor but directly employed and a senior engineer title .

He has no formal IT training or diploma but dropped out of ETH. He makes about 110 K .
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Old 09.09.2021, 21:32
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

Switzerland has become crazy expensive, there is now business case to relocate here for a low end IT job.



Example: 5 1/2 room apartment rent for 4965 CHF /month (no luxury)



https://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/warum-s...n-698223428015


high paying banking jobs and google/amazon/microsoft caused a similar situation like in Frisco.
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Old 09.09.2021, 21:33
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

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@Treverus I know a number of companies (all non-Swiss) paying 150k+ base to fresh CS PhD graduates in Zurich area.
Sure. Because a PhD graduate is NOT your average software developer. How many CS students manage to make a PhD? 2% or so? Companies dont hire them for their experience, but for their potential. They are typically put in some sort of management fast track program. And they are not hired to churn out code.

The OP did not say that he has a PhD, he is not a software architect or mentioned anything else that would warrant a higher salary than 120k. If you have special skills or experience worth a lot to an employer: sure, negotiate a nice deal.
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Old 09.09.2021, 22:01
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Re: Equivalent salary 90k Munich to Zurich?

Thanks for the discussion, very interesting!


I am in fact quite specialized, I don't hold a PhD but I worked mainly in R&D environment with large companies. I don't want to disclose too many details as I'm still in the recruitment process.

I asked between 130-140kCHF, they told me it was fine. I guess I should have ask more... I read online it's the starting salary at Google for example with a master degree from ETH.
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