Archive for the ‘Switzerland’ Category

Switzerland accommodation guide

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

Further searching for great content for our blog, we found a superb website designed to offer info’s for people moving to Switzerland!

In this blog post we here at EGV Recruiting, sum the site up in one short blog entry designed to help you find out more about living and working in Switzerland!

The website www.neu-in-zuerich.ch offers info’s on a variety of topics starting with:

Language:

  • It is important to know that although most of Switzerland is a German speaking country, standard German is only used in writing. Each canton has its specific dialect.
  • In this segment, it is explained why good understanding of the German language is important in day to day life. For those without German language skills solutions are offered in terms of institutions providing German language courses.
  • Face it! If you want to become one with the Swiss you must learn their language!

Education 

  • In this segment, the importance of education is underlined. For example public schools in Zurich have a high standard and are free of cost until completion of the compulsory schooling, as is the Gymnasium which prepares pupils for university.
  • “Without Education nothing is possible” – Everyone who looks for a job and does not undergo any training, has far less opportunities on the job market. This is where apprenticeships become important. Usually, most teenagers that have completed their obligatory schooling do a 3 or 4 year professional apprenticeship.

Health:

  • Health care in Switzerland is generally considered as very good. One thing you should take into account is that you only go to the hospital if there is an absolute emergency. You first have to consult your GP. If it is necessary they can then refer you to a specialist or to the hospital. Pharmacies can also help you a lot.

Transport:

  • This segment describes the highlights of the public transport system in and around Zurich as one of the best in the world.
  • Foreign driving licenses have to be transcribed! You can get your license transcribed within one year after arriving.

Social system:

  • Swiss citizens are very well insured. In addition for private insurances for possessions and a liability insurance which you should set up, and the obligatory health insurance, there are a number of employment insurances.

Customs and traditions:

  • The Swiss are generally very friendly. Words such as “Please”, Thank you” and “Could I perhaps” go a long way. When it comes to friendship, the Swiss rarely make the first step and therefore it takes a long time to get to learn them. Friendships are taken quite seriously once they are established.
  • One can say modern Switzerland has a lack of traditions, especially in the urban regions. There are large and small folk festivals, markets and even cattle shows in many places but this no longer has anything to do with tradition.

Neighborhood:

  • This section explains the fact that being a small country with a high population density, rents are the most common accommodations. Owning property is much rarer.
  • Living in housing buildings and rents comes with its own set of rules! Complaints appear from situations such as barking dogs, loud music, crying children, mess in the staircase, use of other’s parking spaces, etc.

Family and children:

  • Swiss families are generally small. A father, mother and one or two children is normal. Single parents are also becoming increasingly more common in the cities.
  • Equality between women and men is widespread just like in every average western European country.

Work:

  • People generally work 5 days a week, which corresponds to approx. 42 hours. Certain industries have other regulations. Nowadays there are also many part-time positions. Employees have a multitude of rights and do not have to put up with everything from their employer. You can find information on guidelines from your professional association and your labor union.

Leisure:

  • Switzerland is a country that combines water, mountains, city and nature like in no other place in the world. Weather hanging out in bars or sport clubs, hiking or spending time with the family is your cup of tea then be sure to choose Switzerland.

Environment:

  • The Swiss are proud of living in a clean country. Do not throw your rubbish on the ground and not out of the car window. There are special rubbish bags or fee stamps for household waste in all communities. This finances waste disposal and people are required to recycle glass, metal and paper. If you have a compost heap you can dispose of kitchen waste there.

 

Would you like living in Switzerland?

The Swiss Etiquette, a guide for living in Switzerland

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

Switzerland is a tiny country with little under 8 million inhabitants. It is surrounded by four far larger neighbors: France, Germany, Italy and Austria. Yet despite its small size, it seems everyone has an opinion about what life is like in Switzerland. For some the mountainous country is a beautiful, pristine paradise. For others it’s uptight, conservative and even boring.

Switzerland is most famous for its mountains, cheese, chocolate, cows and watches. Of course these things are part of everyday life: check out the mouthwatering display of chocolate bars at any grocery store! Still, the Swiss and their country are far more complex.

One of the biggest challenges is to accurately pin down who exactly typifies the average Swiss. Why? Because there are four different cultures and languages in Switzerland. Some 64% of Swiss speak German. About 20% speak French, 7% speak Italian and less than 1% speaks Romansh.

Only by living here does one learn the customs and etiquette that make the country so much more than its stereotypical image.

The Swiss, for example, pursue a policy of neutrality but also have a large army to defend the country. It’s not unusual to phone up a business acquaintance and find out he left for military service for a few weeks.

In the spirit of trying to get to know the Swiss better, here’s a cultural guide focused on the German-speaking part of the country.

Greetings:

This is an area you should try to get right or things could get uncomfortable. The Swiss, while not the most outgoing individuals on the planet, still like their formal greetings.

If you’re meeting someone for the first time, stretch out your hand and say grüezi (hello). If you meet a friend, then you kiss them three times: offering first your right cheek, then left, then right again. The latter exchange is for women greeting women and men greeting woman. The boys stick with a handshake or maybe a man hug.

When you go into a store say grüezi to the sales people, and when you leave say adieu. People may also greet strangers with a grüezi when passing in the street, and always on hiking trials. Bitte and merci or danke are also appreciated here.

Personal space:

This may be the hardest thing for some people to accept: the orderly Swiss do not believe in lining up. Whether it´s the cheese counter at the supermarket, the bus stop, or the ski lift, it´s every man for himself. Do not expect that the Swiss will honor or even acknowledge a line up. Instead be prepared to speak up and tell others that it´s your time to buy bread and don´t be shy about using a little elbow to get ahead when there are hordes of people.

The Swiss also aren´t fusses about bumping into each other. Maybe it´s because there are so many people packed into a small country. If you find yourself bumped, don’t make a dirty face but instead say scho guet to the bumper and move on. If you do the bumping say sorry or äxgüsi.

The Swiss tend to take a more arms-length approach when it comes to their personal lives. They tend to be quiet and discreet when they first meet you so don’t tell them your whole life story or ask probing questions about their family or job. It will probably require a lot of work and time before you are upgraded from acquaintance to friend.

“It is best to approach new people carefully and not to be too forward.’’

This can be frustrating for foreigners who are used to making instant friends, but it´s no reason to quit and hang out only with expats.
Keep Swiss reticence in mind if you need help, whether it’s finding and address or getting help lifting your stroller onto the train. The Swiss are usually very happy to assist someone, but often wait until they are asked before springing into action.

 

Rules for everyday life:

The Swiss live up to their reputation when it comes to the area of punctuality. Here being late is not a way of life: it´s just rude.
Going to a business meeting? Show up early so you look organized, competent and respectful.

The same goes with play dates it the sandbox: meeting up with your friend and her child an hour after the agreed time likely won´t go down well.

People are also expected to show up on time for social outings, whether it´s dinner at someone´s house, drinks at a bar, or party. The Swiss aren´t asking a lot: if the train and busses can run on time, why can´t you?

When meeting friends for a drink, there are strict rules when it comes to how the toasting unfolds. Wait until everyone has their beverage, look your toasting partner in the eye, clink your glasses, and say zum Wohl or prost. Repeat the same ritual with everyone in the group. Then let the drinking begin.

You don’t get this squeaky clean and organized without rules, and the Swiss have many to ensure life keeps running smoothly.

For example you can´t just throw your trash into any old bag: instead you must pay for special garbage bags. There are also strict rules for recycling: paper must be bound with a string and put out in a special collection spot on the anointed day. Glass and aluminum are taken to a recycling depot, though it´s forbidden to do so during the evening and on weekends. Plastic bottles are returned to the store, along with coffee capsules.

Children:

The Swiss take a decidedly hands-off approach when it comes to raising kids. No helicopter dads and moms here. Instead, toddlers are encouraged to zoom around on balance bikes, go to playgrounds in the forest and climb to their hearts´ content in the playground. School-age kids are encouraged to walk or bike to school by themselves, and play outside with friends on their own.

Switzerland has a unique education system. Children typically enter kindergarten at the age of 4-5. After grade 6 or 9, they can try tan exam to enter Gymnasium, the school that allows them to go on to university.

Many Swiss children however go through a stream that incorporates education with vocational training. Don´t be alarmed if you have an extremely young nurse, mechanic or childcare worker: they have been training for years.

Fondue:

If there´s one dish the Swiss are most famous for, it´s cheese fondue. They have their own rituals for this rich and indulgent dish that must be observed.

When at a restaurant or visiting Swiss friends, you will be offered the following drinks to accompany fondue: wine, schnapps or tea. Beer is definitely frowned upon. The Swiss aren’t being difficult: they just believe that some drinks help you digest the melted cheese better.

When eating fondue, diners are not supposed to take a dainty little swirl with their fork to avoid germs. Instead, start stirring vigorously as soon as the fondue pot is put on the heater to prevent the cheese from burning.

The Swiss tend to be pretty traditional with their fondue, sticking with domestic favorites like Emmentaler, Gruyere and Vacherin rather than mixing things up with foreign varieties like cheddar. And don´t throw the fondue pot into the sink as soon as all the melted cheese is consumed: the Swiss like to eat the crust that forms at the bottom, which they call the religieuse.

 

We would like to remind you that we currently have vacant positions for specialist doctors in General Medicine and Internal Medicine in the German speaking Cantons of Switzerland. For more info’s visit our site!

 

Source of the article here

 

Doctors recruited by EGV visit their future employers in Switzerland

Friday, July 6th, 2012

The plane is on its way to Zurich and before touching the ground three of its passengers look through the window asking themselves: Could this be my home in the future?

They are doctors who applied through us for a job in a Swiss health care establishment and we organized a study tour in which one of our consultants accompanied them in order to meet the employer and see with their own eyes how their future workplace might look like.

In the morning we are invited to see the medical center which was built from the ground after the former GP retired and where on approximately 200 square meters we can see the vision of modern medicine come to life.

Together with one of the candidates we meet the coordinator of the medical center, a German GP which decided to move to Switzerland in order to escape the bureaucracy in Germany and to have a balanced and calm life. He tells us that after 6 Months he feels that he can take enough time to treat his patients and he does not have to be in a rush all the time.

After this meeting we are invited on a tour through the medical center, first we stop at the center’s private pharmacy, which would be not allowed in other countries, then comes the laboratory where a nice lady explains us which kind of tests they can perform and which ones they send out per post in order to get the results the second day.

In another room we can find a new ultrasound instrument and in another one an EKG and a bike in order to perform effort EKG. Close by is also the Roentgen machine.

One of the candidates tells me with a smile on his face that this is how he always wanted to treat patients: “Everything in one place”!

We are invited for lunch in the old town where our hosts booked a nice table outside. From the terrace we can observe that the streets are almost empty and that the atmosphere is calm. Our hosts explains us that many people go home in order to eat with their families and that in many families only one person is working because they can afford a good living from a single income.

A part of the study tour is also to discover the region and we decided to drive to lake Constance (or Bodensee), Central Europe’s third largest lake. The boats are swinging in the water and from the shore we can see the Alps on the Austrian side and the nice churches and houses of Lindau on the German side of the lake.

Living in Switzerland is fascinating because the distances between the cities are small and you have to drive a short way to work if you plan to live outside the city or if you just want to ski in the Alps for a day. Also from Zurich you can reach Milan, Munich or Innsbruck in about 3 hours and in 4 hours you could be in Lyon, Luxembourg, Frankfurt or at the Mediterranean see near Genoa.

In the evening we met again for dinner and the coordinator of the medical center was so nice to join us with his wife. We were advised about the local dishes and we all decided to have Rösti as a side. During the evening the doctor’s minds were focused on exchanging ideas on professional issues but in their hearts they tried to find the answer to the same question: Could this be my home in the future?

If you would like to find out more about our vacancies in Switzerland click here!

Or contact us!