Is Switzerland still tops for high end jobs

Published:  22 Apr at 6 PM
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Is Switzerland’s position as a favourite destination for expat professionals now in decline?

For decades, Switzerland’s unbeatable reputation for quality of life and career potential has attracted the brightest and the best to its carefully-tended cities, spectacular scenery and top-class amenities. Foreign workers have come, seen and conquered, helping the country maintain its high levels of prosperity.

However, resulting from the 2014 referendum on the subject of mass immigration, a new law controlling the number of expats allowed may increase the difficulties experienced by British expats wanting to obtain residency. Added to that, the country’s extremely low unemployment rates may mean less jobs available for foreigners.Does this mean that Switzerland has had its day as the top destination for talented professional expats?

Although a number of major companies based in Switzerland are cutting back on recruitment as well as cutting jobs, there are still ways in for prospective employees whose profiles fit stated requirements. Skill shortages still abound, especially in bioscience, medical device design and manufacture, banking, engineering, construction and food services.

At the top of the relocation tree, Swiss companies are increasingly inviting foreign talent to fill CEO posts, with the numbers accepted increasing considerably over the past few years. Last year, half of all candidates for CEO positions were sourced from overseas, with a preference for foreigners and shareholder involvement the main reasons. In addition, two-thirds of new board members were expatriates, as were over a third of new executives.

Last year, foreign business start-ups created 38 per cent more jobs than in previous years, and job creation in Switzerland as a whole has outpaced that in all other OECD countries since 2008. The country has retained its top place for economics in the HSBC Expat Explorer Survey, with the jobs market clearly still open for top-flight expat professionals.
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