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Doing Business in Switzerland

Switzerland is renowned for its strong and stable economy, which is largely fueled by its well-established banking sector, manufacturing industry, including pharmaceuticals and machinery, and a robust service sector. A hub of innovation and technology, Switzerland offers a favorable environment for business, characterized by a highly developed infrastructure, a skilled labor force, and a high standard of living.

Statistics about the Economy of Switzerland

As one of the wealthiest nations globally, Switzerland has a GDP per capita that is among the highest in the world. In 2020, the country had a GDP of approximately 703 billion USD. The economy has shown great resilience over the years, maintaining low levels of national debt and a low unemployment rate, which stood at around 3.1% in 2020. The financial and insurance services sector is a significant contributor to the economy, along with the industrial sector, including pharmaceutical companies like Novartis and Roche.

Why Doing Business in Switzerland

Doing business in Switzerland offers numerous advantages, including political stability, a favorable tax regime, and strong legal frameworks protecting businesses and intellectual property. The country has bilateral agreements with the EU, facilitating trade and economic cooperation. Moreover, its strategic location in the heart of Europe makes it an excellent base for companies looking to expand in the European market.

Switzerland Business Guides

Business Culture in Switzerland

The Swiss business culture values punctuality, efficiency, and formality. Decision-making tends to be hierarchical, with a clear distinction between different levels of management. Face-to-face meetings are preferred over virtual communication, and building a network through personal relationships is often the key to successful business dealings. Moreover, due to the multilingual nature of the country, understanding the linguistic dynamics is essential in navigating the business landscape effectively.

Networking in Switzerland

Networking in Switzerland is facilitated through a variety of business associations and chambers of commerce that regularly organize events and forums for professionals to meet and exchange ideas. Leveraging these platforms can be a great way to build a network that can aid in business growth. Additionally, utilizing online platforms such as LinkedIn can enhance networking opportunities within the Swiss business community.

How to Hire in Switzerland

Hiring in Switzerland requires a deep understanding of the local labor market and regulations governing employment contracts. It is common to use recruitment agencies for finding the right candidates. The country has a dual education system, which ensures a steady supply of well-trained professionals in various fields. Offering competitive salaries and benefits is crucial in attracting and retaining the best talent in the highly competitive Swiss job market.

Introducing the Employer of Record and PEO Solution

Companies looking to expand in Switzerland without setting up a full-fledged entity can opt for the Employer of Record (EOR) or Professional Employer Organization (PEO) solutions. These services take care of legal compliances, payroll, and HR responsibilities, allowing businesses to operate seamlessly without delving deep into the administrative intricacies of the Swiss system.

How to Get a Work Visa

Getting a work visa in Switzerland is a multi-step process involving approval from both federal and cantonal authorities. The employer initiates the process by obtaining a work permit for the prospective employee. After receiving the permit, the individual can apply for a visa at the Swiss embassy or consulate in their home country. Thorough preparation and adherence to the visa requirements can ensure a smooth process.

How to Register a Company

Registering a company in Switzerland involves several bureaucratic steps, including choosing a unique company name, preparing the necessary documentation, and registering with the Commercial Register. A notary public typically handles the process of company registration, and it is advisable to consult a legal expert to guide through the complex procedures efficiently.

How to Acquire Real Estate for Business

Acquiring real estate for business purposes in Switzerland requires careful consideration of various factors, including zoning regulations and tax implications. It is generally recommended to seek the services of a local real estate expert who can guide businesses through the process, ensuring all legalities are met and that the property suits the business needs perfectly.


Switzerland stands as a beacon of economic stability and prosperity, offering a fertile ground for businesses to thrive. Understanding the country’s economic landscape, cultural nuances, and legal frameworks is vital in establishing a successful business in Switzerland. With the right approach and guidance, Switzerland can be a land of immense opportunities for business entities looking to expand their horizons in the European market.

cropped Travis Kliever 1
Article By
Travis is a global business development advisor. He has spent the last 14 years supporting business establishment and development in North America, Southeast Asia, and throughout the world. With multiple degrees from the University of Oregon, Travis currently splits his time between the US, and Bali, Indonesia. At RemotePad, Travis writes about remote work, hiring internationally and PEO/EOR business models.