Temporary staffing on the rise in Switzerland

More and more employees are engaged in temporary jobs in Switzerland, according to a report that says that demand for such interim work has been growing at annual rate of almost ten percent for the past 20 years.

Temporary staffing on the rise in Switzerland
Adecco, the world's largest temporary staffing agency, is headquartered in Zurich. Photo: AFP

Around 300,000 workers were hired last year under contracts fixed for a limited period of time, Swissstaffing, an employers’ association that represents temporary staffing companies said.

Temporary employees worked a total of 161 million hours and earned total wages of 4.7 billion francs ( $4.87 billion), said the group, which conducts research into the temporary staffing market every four years.

Almost a quarter of such workers surveyed earned more than 30 francs an hour, while the rest earned between 25 and 29.90 francs an hour.

The temporary staffing industry in Switzerland reported a turnover of 6.5 billion francs last year, up from 5.2 billion francs in 2010, an increase of more than 21 percent.

While there is no one kind of temporary worker, statistics showed they are increasingly well qualified.

In 2014, 69 percent of such employees had high professional qualifications.

More than two-thirds of temps performed specialized tasks in the artisanal, technical and administrative domaines, as well as in services.

Around 31 percent were engaged as auxiliary staff.

Temporary work impacted all the major economic sectors, including construction, industry and services, including banking, communications, healthcare, retail, transport, hotels and restaurants.

A high number of temporary workers are young, with 27 percent under the age of 26, Swissstaffing said.

Only 3.5 percent of workers in Switzerland over the age of 40 opted for temporary work, which is frequently seen as a stepping stone for full-time employment.

Half of temporary workers in the country were Swiss, while the majority of foreigners came from Germany, Portugal and the Balkans, the report said.

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Which countries does Switzerland have working holiday visa agreements with?

Switzerland has made reciprocal agreements regarding working holiday visas with several countries. Here's what you need to know.

Which countries does Switzerland have working holiday visa agreements with?

Over the past few decades, countries around the globe have rolled out ‘working holiday visa’ agreements.

These visa schemes, largely targeted at young people, allow people to work and live in a particular country, usually for a set period of time and pursuant to certain conditions.

In recent years, Switzerland has expanded its own form of a ‘working holiday visa’, although there are some important differences to be aware of.

Unlike some of the better known schemes like those in place in Australia, applicants are discouraged from moving around and are generally required to stay with the one employer for the duration.

The goal of the visa scheme is to allow applicants to “expand their occupational and linguistic skills in Switzerland”.

The visa scheme runs for 18 months and cannot be extended.

Which countries does Switzerland have working holiday visa agreements with?

The agreements are made between countries, meaning your fate will depend on whether your government has at some point struck a deal with Switzerland.

EXPLAINED: What’s the difference between permanent residence and Swiss citizenship?

If you are from the European Union or an EFTA country (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland), then you will be able to live and work in Switzerland as is – and will not need to go through this process.

If you come from outside the EU, you will only be able to apply for this visa if you are a citizen of the following countries:

Australia, Argentina, Canada, Chile, Indonesia, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, the Philippines, Russia, South Africa, Tunisia, Ukraine and the United States.

What does ‘reciprocal’ mean in this context? 

Where these agreements have been struck, they have entitled citizens of both countries to certain rights and permissions in the other country. 

However, while these arrangements might be reciprocal, they are not identical. 

For instance, while citizens of Australia can enter Switzerland and work, the rules for Swiss citizens in Australia are significantly different. 

Therefore, if considering each program, be sure to study all of the relevant details as these will change from country to country and from agreement to agreement. 

More information is available at the following link. 

EXPLAINED: How to get a working holiday visa in Switzerland