Access to the labour market
Before you may take up employment, your residential status must be clarified by the local community office where you live. The requirements for your residence and your work permit depend on your nationality and the reason for your stay. This also applies to anyone who has recently arrived in Switzerland on the grounds of family reunification («Familiennachzug») or because they are in a partnership with a resident.
The free movement of persons generally applies to EU/EFTA nationals. Non-EU/EFTA nationals (third-country nationals) may only start a job if they have a work permit. We recommend that you contact your local community office or the Zurich Office for Economy and Labour («Amt für Wirtschaft und Arbeit») as soon as you plan to look for work.
Finding a job
Job offers can be found on online or in newspapers, and there are also private employment agencies. If you wish to apply for job, you will have to submit various documents such as your CV, a motivation letter and, if available, copies of your degree certificates, diplomas and job references.
Recognition of diplomas
We recommend that you enquire about the recognition of your non-Swiss diplomas and certificates as soon as possible. Depending on the industry, the recognition procedures are complex and may require a long validation time. Not all non-Swiss diplomas and certificates are automatically recognised in Switzerland.
The Career Information Centres «biz» (abbreviation for Berufsinformationszentrum) provide counselling and assistance with your questions regarding occupational careers in Switzerland.
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