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Workforce 

Deutsch

The employment market in Switzerland is characterised by social stability, liberal employment laws and a motivated, highly qualified workforce. Unemployment is exceedingly low. The last five years (2011 to 2015) saw the Swiss unemployment rate fluctuate between an average of 2.8 and 3.3 per cent. It was even lower in Canton Schwyz, at 1.3 to 1.7 per cent. 

Qualified workforce

Numerous highly qualified employees from Canton Schwyz commute to places of work in neighbouring cantons. However, many of them would like to be able to work nearer to where they live. There is thus immense potential in Canton Schwyz for recruiting a well-educated, well-trained workforce.

Specialist HR consultants are available in the canton’s regional employment centres for advice on staff recruitment. The staff at the regional employment centres in Goldau and Lachen are there to offer professional, free-of-charge support when looking for suitable employees.   

More information may be found in the Service Box.

Liberal employment laws

Switzerland’s employment legislation is less bureaucratic than that of other countries, which has a positive effect on the employment market.

Pay agreements in Switzerland are made individually between the employer and employee. The minimum statutory period of notice is one month in the first year of employment, two months in years two to nine, and three months thereafter.

The maximum statutory working hours per week are between 45 and 50 hours, depending on the occupation and sector. The average working hours per week are in the region of 42 hours. The statutory leave entitlement is five weeks for employees up to and including the age of 20 and four weeks thereafter. Where collective bargaining agreements apply, employees of all ages are generally also entitled to five weeks’ leave.  

Work and residency permits

Citizens of an EU-27 or EFTA (European Free Trade Association) country remaining in Switzerland for a period of three months or less do not need a permit. Within this time they are free to live and work in Switzerland, but the authorities have to be notified of any employment activities.

Any employment undertaken by an EU-27/EFTA citizen that lasts more than three months must be registered at the residential municipality. The individual is required to apply for a residency permit, which also acts as their work permit.

Different rules apply to citizens of Croatia and third-party countries. They have to meet more stringent criteria to be able to obtain a residency permit. Please contact us for details of the various requirements. Canton Schwyz’s Business Promotion Office would be happy to help you further.   

Residency without employment
Persons from EU-27/EFTA country not seeking employment may remain in Switzerland, provided they can show that they have the financial means to support themselves and have sufficient sickness and accident insurance cover. The first residency permit is usually issued for a period of five years. It can be revoked or an extension refused if the conditions under which it was issued are no longer met.

Citizens of Croatia and third-party countries not seeking employment have to meet more stringent criteria to be able to obtain a residency permit in Canton Schwyz. Please contact us for details of the various requirements. Canton Schwyz’s Business Promotion Office would be happy to help you further.  

Weitere Informationen finden Sie in der Service-Box.

Pay and social security 

Average earnings in Switzerland are dependent on the sector, region and industry. The level of pay in major conurbations such as Geneva and Zurich is relatively high compared to the rest of the country.

Labour costs in Switzerland are very competitive compared to Germany or the USA thanks to the longer hours worked, the above-average productivity, the loyalty and morale of the staff and the moderate indirect labour costs. On the whole, employers receive excellent value for money.

The country’s social security system is based on the “three-pillar” principle of state, occupational and private provision.

More information may be found in the Service Box.