Why is Zurich a top city for tech workers?

Helena Bachmann
Helena Bachmann - [email protected]
Why is Zurich a top city for tech workers?
Zurich is one of the most tech-savvy job markets in Europe. Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Switzerland's largest city is famous for its banking sector. But there's much more to Zurich's jobs scene than meets the eye.


When you see old buildings along Zurich’s streets, you may think of this city as a traditional financial hub, perhaps even a bit staid and stuffy, as banking centres often are.

It is true that Zurich is Switzerland’s financial hub, but it is also more than that, and it does have a cutting-edge modern side to it.

Combine “finance” with “technology” and what you get is a word that defines the Zurich of the 21st century: a “fintech” centre — a term which means that computer programmes and other technology are used to support or enable banking and financial services.

And this is where Zurich excels.


In fact, Zurich is now recognised as one of Europe’s primary destinations for tech workers; some expert sources even rank it as the best city in the world in which to pursue a tech career.

As an outreach, or exension, of being a fintech hub, “it is no surprise that Zürich also shines in the areas of cryptocurrency and blockchain", according to EU’s information platform, Euronews.

“Artificial intelligence and machine learning, along with cybersecurity and biotech, are also in focus", in Zurich.

Why is Zurich ranked so highly in these fields?

Generally speaking, Switzerland as a whole is seen as an attractive destination for cutting-edge industries.

In the Global Innovation Index 2022 rankings, the country came first for the 12th year in a row, winning top scores for areas including advanced technologies.

As for Zurich itself, it emerged as “as the top mid-sized European tech city" in another survey, fDi Intelligence.

This finding is based not only on the large number of tech companies per capita, but also on the high broadband speeds available in the area — logically, the top requirement for a city to qualify as a “tech hub." 

“Moreover, the city’s strategy for foreign direct investment also scored well,” according to Switzerland Global Enterprise, a promotion platform for export and investment.

“Successful tech cities aim to build a globally connected community in addition to fostering a sense of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit,” the organisation added.

What tech companies are there in Zurich?

Among the more recognisable names are Google, Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, and Apple, but there are dozens of smaller tech firms as well, both established and start-ups.

And Zurich also boasts a top research university, the ETH. With its focus on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, it lays solid foundations in all high-tech fields, including in artificial intelligence. 

READ MORE: Why ETH Zurich has been ranked the 'best university in continental Europe'


What tech jobs are available in Zurich and how much can you earn?

Job listings are updated frequently so it’s best to either search directly on company sites, or through recruitment agencies such as Manpower, Adecco, Glassdoor, and

Annual salaries vary depending on the level of education, skills, and experience required, as well as whether the work is full- or part- time.

Generally speaking, however, wages for university-educated tech specialists who work full-time are upward of 100,000 francs a year, according to current listings.

READ MORE: What is the average salary for (almost) every job in Switzerland?


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