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Old 15.04.2009, 22:05
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Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

Hi all,

I'm an American working as an au pair around Zürich since November. I am here on an L permit but I have been applying for design jobs increasingly lately because I am not sure if my host mom will leave in June before our contract is up.

I could find another au pair family to last me until November, but I would really just like to find a permanent design job so I can start earning salary and continue learning German.

Last week I had my first interview. It went well and they liked me but after calling the authorities to inquire about a permit, they decided it would be too unlikely for a non EU to acquire a B permit so they are not going to pursue it.

Is this an easy let down? Is it really possible I can find a job as an American? I'm applying to jobs like crazy and when I actually get a real person to respond to me and interview me, it's very discouraging to have a permit be the reason why I can't work.

How have people on this forum found jobs? Were you generally offered a job before coming here? Did your company fight for your employment permit? Did you marry to get a permit? Can you apply for a work permit without a job offer yet?

I feel like this will be a vicious negative cycle... no job offer = no permit, no permit = no job offer.

Anyway, I appreciate your input!

Last edited by diamondscan; 17.04.2009 at 09:03.
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  #2  
Old 15.04.2009, 22:14
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

Do you have an education and a diploma in graphic design?

If yes the employer who are interested to employ you mind can help you to get a permit with this program.

http://www.swissemigration.ch/themen...x.html?lang=en

Good luck
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Old 15.04.2009, 22:15
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

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Hi all,

I'm an American working as an au pair around Zürich since November. I am here on an L permit but I have been applying for graphic design jobs increasingly lately because I am not sure if my host mom will leave in June before our contract is up.

I could find another au pair family to last me until November, but I would really just like to find a permanent design job so I can start earning salary and continue learning German.

Last week I had my first interview. It went well and they liked me but after calling the authorities to inquire about a permit, they decided it would be too unlikely for a non EU to acquire a B permit so they are not going to pursue it.

Is this an easy let down? Is it really possible I can find a job as an American? I'm applying to jobs like crazy and when I actually get a real person to respond to me and interview me, it's very discouraging to have a permit be the reason why I can't work.

How have people on this forum found jobs? Were you generally offered a job before coming here? Did your company fight for your employment permit? Did you marry to get a permit? Can you apply for a work permit without a job offer yet?

I feel like this will be a vicious negative cycle... no job offer = no permit, no permit = no job offer.

Anyway, I appreciate your input!

I was lucky enough to have the company do the work involved in getting a permit. Despite a 2 year contract i got an L permit both times.

I was offered a job as part of a mutual exchange of personell.....I dont think you can get a work permit without a job offer

It sucks (workwise) to be an American in Europe
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Old 15.04.2009, 22:39
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

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It sucks (workwise) to be an American in Europe
It also sucks (workwise) to be an European in America.
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  #5  
Old 15.04.2009, 23:26
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

Thank you for the link Roman! Yes I graduated from a university in the States with a bachelor of science in design. Honors too, not that the authorities care.

It seems sad in this day and age where we have the ability to migrate from country to country and share boundaries that there are such strict controls for working. I want a universal passport!

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Do you have an education and a diploma in graphic design?

If yes the employer who are interested to employ you mind can help you to get a permit with this program.

http://www.swissemigration.ch/themen...x.html?lang=en

Good luck
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  #6  
Old 15.04.2009, 23:30
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

Understand your frustration but who to blame. In difficult times like now, the employers enjoy their rights in picking the perfect-match candidates and the less troublesome way (here probably cost saving too as they avoid the application process) to hire someone.
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Old 15.04.2009, 23:51
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

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It seems sad in this day and age where we have the ability to migrate from country to country and share boundaries that there are such strict controls for working. I want a universal passport!
Sad you say that... So many educated and solvent people in so called "third world countries" are deprived of a possibility to even visit, let alone work in most countries you have free access to... And you still complain.
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Old 15.04.2009, 23:54
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

You will get a job in the end, but be prepared to search for 1-2 years and remember to use that time wisely.
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Old 16.04.2009, 02:16
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

The normal rule is that in order to get a permit an employer must show that they were unable to find a Swiss or EU citizen who could take up the job. In the current economic situation this is a tall order.

There are exceptions to the rule such as foreign companies that have major operations here can bring in a certain number of people without having to meet these requirements, but since you are already in the country I would thing that Roman's suggestion is perhaps the best option.

Good luck with it,

Jim
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Old 16.04.2009, 04:25
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

I understand your frustration as well. I am getting married to my bf ( french) who works in switzerland and so eventually i will get a permit. but in the mean time, i have been trying to apply for jobs as well but nobody wants to hire me until the permit is settled. it is frustrating for me too, i am an experienced teacher of english- a degree in linguistics and a masters in esl, years of teaching and training and a real love of teaching as well. i've heard a lot of stories of people who have permits but no training or teaching experience getting jobs easily.

keep trying to network the best you can and maybe even try freelancing or offering your services to someone just to get some recognition- that's a good start anyway and who knows where it can take you!

good luck!
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Old 16.04.2009, 08:04
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

Hi,

Sorry to hear about your predicament and hope you find something suitable.

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It seems sad in this day and age where we have the ability to migrate from country to country and share boundaries that there are such strict controls for working. I want a universal passport!
I am afraid to say the US is just as guilty as the rest when it comes to work restrictions for non-Americans. I applied for a job in the US many years ago and although the employer was interested I was turned down because of the hoops they would have to jump through to get me a H1-B.

Cheers,
Nick
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Old 16.04.2009, 08:45
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

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Hi all,
How have people on this forum found jobs? Were you generally offered a job before coming here? Did your company fight for your employment permit? Did you marry to get a permit? Can you apply for a work permit without a job offer yet?
To bring the thread back on topic and give you a little ray of hope: I came out here as an MBA student (never left the US prior to that). Went back to Chicago afterwards, decided after a month or two that it didn't suit me anymore. Came back here on my tourist visa, grabbed a hotel, looked for a place to live for a month or two, and once I found that, started looking for work. Found a 3-month contract, worked it out, got offered several jobs after that and moved to a B-permit (no, you can't have a work permit without a job offer - employer has to do that for us non-EUs). Hell, at the time I barely even spoke German, though I was working on it.

So it's definitely possible to find a job out here. However, in most cases you do have to be patient. My advice is to look outside the canton Zürich if possible. Employers here are rather jaded by all the nonstop applications; those outside this canton can have a harder time finding qualified employees.

Good luck - just stick to it, keep up the hard work at applying, and keep your chin up. It'll work out!

Lance
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  #13  
Old 16.04.2009, 09:34
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

Just to put this in a wider context one of my neighbours is Swiss and a graphic designer. He's been looking for a permanent job as a graphic designer for over a year now without success. He speaks German, French and English and has cast his net widely by applying to Swiss and International companies throughout the region.
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Old 16.04.2009, 10:55
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

Ouch, this does not bode well for the job search! I really hope I find something by the time my au pair visa runs out in November. I would complain even more about having to continue the job search and language integration from the States. Being patient is tough, but everyone's right: it's the thing to do.

Has anyone heard about companies that work with you to provide a "job offer" to help people get their work permits which they can then use to apply to real jobs? This sounds kind of shady to me, but if I could pay someone to fight for a work permit I could use... I would definitely be interested. Tell me if I'm completely naive about this.

I know America makes it extremely tough for people to come and work there, or even visit for goodness sake. I always thought it was a shame to turn away smart potential employees trying to come into the country legally. Maybe I'm an idealist. I definitely think America needs to make some big changes in the next few years, and make up for some of the Bush damage. (One more reason I would like to be in Europe right now... does that sound too unpatriotic?)

The job offer I was turned down from was in Luzern. While I would like the Zürich canton because my boyfriend lives in Winterthur, I'm definitely desperate enough to take any city in die Schweiz. I'm trying to blanket my resume over the country, but I'm finding it hard not to be pessimistic about applying to all these jobs that seem very unlikely. Is the shotgun approach really the best method?

Corbets, how did you acquire a 3 month contract? Did you apply to lots of jobs posted all in German even with your minimal language skills?

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Just to put this in a wider context one of my neighbours is Swiss and a graphic designer. He's been looking for a permanent job as a graphic designer for over a year now without success. He speaks German, French and English and has cast his net widely by applying to Swiss and International companies throughout the region.
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Old 16.04.2009, 11:00
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

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Understand your frustration but who to blame. In difficult times like now, the employers enjoy their rights in picking the perfect-match candidates and the less troublesome way (here probably cost saving too as they avoid the application process) to hire someone.
Unless they pay you rather less than perfect-match candidate!
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Old 14.06.2009, 02:28
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Re: Cold shoulder from the Swiss Employers

I was in your shoes just some weeks ago.

I was also an aupair (but with an UE passport), and I barely spoke french.
I started looking for a job as a graphic designer, and I got one in Lausanne after about 3 weeks.

I sent about 20 emails to different places, both listed on job related sites and places I found in google. I think the best places to work are never listed, as the good posts go very fast, before the company has to announce it.

I went to 3 interviews in the same place with different people, and I manage to learn just enough french to make it trough It was actually harder to find a place to live, then to work.

One might say Im lucky, but Im quite good too.

hints:
-make a great online portfolio (not pdf)
-look in google with some related keywords, find the places where you could work get their email and send them your portfolio.
-be really enthusiastic about what you do and your life. That seduces the employer.


so dont give up, work hard, and search like there's no tomorrow.
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