Top 15 Highest Paying Jobs in Switzerland
A large salary is important to a lot of people currently working in Switzerland. A high-paying job covers the basic needs of most of life’s more basic costs (food, shopping, rent or mortgage, travel, etc.), while still leaving a surplus of funds to spend on some of the finer things in life.
Switzerland is one of the wealthiest nations in the world. It has a robust healthcare system, and high-quality education and consistently ranks near the top of global lists measuring economic competitiveness and human development. It was even selected by the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) as the #1 nation for attracting skilled workers. But more on that later…
Despite these impressive facts, the cost of living in many major Swiss cities like Geneva, Zurich, and Basel, is high. In fact, according to a survey in late 2020, due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Zurich (along with Paris and Hong Kong) has been named the most expensive city in the world to live in. This is as good a reason as any for job seekers in Switzerland to find a new, high-paying position.
Thinking of taking your career to the next level? Here is our list of the highest-paying jobs in Switzerland:
Average salary: CHF 260,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 110,000 – 300,000 per year
Job description: Due to the nature of this specialist branch of healthcare, orthodontists in Switzerland are very well paid. Like a dentist, an Orthodontist performs a critical service to the public in the form of advanced oral care. Anyone who has ever been made to wear dental braces or other mouthpieces knows the costs associated (and usually not covered by insurance) with orthodontics. The skills required are intense, and the work itself is challenging.
Average salary: CHF 205,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 123,000 – 306,000 per year
Job description: These positions are as high as you can get in most companies. And they carry the most responsibilities. Because the job of the CEO is so important to the overall function of an organization, and because they absorb so much of the risk, the compensation is typically the highest of anyone else on the payroll.
Average salary: CHF 203,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 88,000 – 289,000 per year
Job description: Switzerland has one of the most robust healthcare systems in all of Europe, and this is mainly because of the quality of education that goes into the training. Doctors and Surgeons provide general and specific health care to people from all walks of life. They know how to diagnose, treat and cure the infirm, making their jobs some of the most sought-after. Simply put, people in the medical profession are paid the highest because their specialized fields require the most training and the most practice. The higher you climb in medicine, the more risks, so you must be great.
Average salary: CHF 178,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 104,000 – 223,000 per year
Job description: Second only to the Chief Executive Officer, the Chief Financial Officer, or CFO, is responsible for managing the company’s money –– including scheduling, overseeing budgets, determining a department’s spend vs. costs figures, and so on. That should tell you how important and highly demanding they are. As a result, they are paid very well.
Average salary: CHF 167,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 102,000 – 209,000 per year
Job description: Judges make some of the most important decisions that affect individuals and society as a whole. Their rulings, which they make based on extensive reading, researching, and experience, are incredibly important and they bear the weight of all their actions. Also, you can’t just leave law school and decide to become a judge –– you have to put in the work articling and clerking before you can rise to such a prestigious role. The compensation is justifiably higher.
Average salary: CHF 151,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 75,000 – 180,000 per year
Job description: The years it takes to become a College or University Professor in Switzerland, like anywhere, is extensive and demanding –– especially given the high-quality Swiss education system. But once a university student graduates to the level of professor, especially a tenured professor, they can start teaching their students in their chosen field of education –– and their salaries will eventually become commensurate with all their hard work.
Average salary: CHF 135,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 82,000 – 187,000 per year
Job description: A highly demanding job that requires considerable training and technical skills, an ITS (Information Technology Systems) Director, especially one at a prominent corporate digital or business firm, is not only some of the most attractive positions in Swiss markets today, but they are also some of the best paying. ITS Directors help solve computer issues at the highest level while also helping to develop and/or test software applications while troubleshooting and utilizing specialized skills like coding and writing. In addition to this pressing workload, Directors also manage the day-to-day operations of their teams across numerous tech departments. Major decisions fall onto their shoulders and, as such, they are well compensated.
Average salary: CHF 125,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 78,000 – 164,000 per year
Job description: Whatever your feelings are about lawyers, they provide a necessary service to people in need. And they are typically compensated based on how valuable they are to their clients –– the more serious the trouble people find themselves in, the higher they’ll pay to have a more experienced and knowledgeable attorney to represent them in court. Even lawyers who specialize in reading wills, buying/selling a property, or putting together contracts are well-paid because of the importance of the work involved.
Average salary: CHF 121,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 67,000 – 174,000 per year
Job description: As unique as a high-paying job as you can find, pilots are some of the most in-demand positions in Switzerland and beyond. Commercial airline pilots who fly to international destinations are typically paid more than continental or local-haul pilots, but the training required for all flights is the same. And it’s very intensive, so the rewards are usually worth it in the end.
Average salary: CHF 118,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 59,000 – 172,000 per year
Job description: Switzerland is known for its prominence as a global banking destination so it’s only natural that jobs within the financial sector would be in high demand. Positions that involve the handling and moving of money is going to be well-paid wherever the market is in Switzerland –– and Investment Bankers are some of the most in-demand and highly compensated. These roles require a qualified and dedicated candidate with a strong knowledge of investments and funds –– one who can also oversee the efficiency of their entire organization while being in charge of millions, sometimes, billions of other people’s hard-earned income.
Average salary: CHF 118,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 56,000 – 167,000 per year
Job description: As the population of Switzerland continues to grow, many businesses operating in and around major metropolitan areas need qualified job candidates to oversee the day-to-day operations of their companies. Senior-level Actuaries or Business Managers are responsible for leading employees to achieve internal goals and expectations, implementing and enforcing sales strategies, and evaluating efficiencies throughout the calendar year. Because of the immense responsibilities of managing so many moving parts, these positions are very well-paid.
Average salary: CHF 113,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 55,000 – 171,000 per year
Job description: An extremely important and in-demand job in areas of Switzerland –– especially in more rural regions where farming and agriculture are more prominent –– Veterinarians, or vets, help to treat conditions and diagnose illnesses in animals while communicating clear instructions for at-home treatment to farmers and pet owners. These roles require intensive training within the veterinarian sciences field –– and the salary for a full-time vet is quite high.
Average salary: CHF 95,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 52,000 – 154,000 per year
Job description: The demand for Software Engineers in Switzerland (also known as Software Specialists or Software Engineers) has steadily grown since the early 2000s –– especially in burgeoning tech-based hubs like Zurich, Geneva, and Basel. Software Engineers typically work long hours, but they also have adaptable schedules that offer growth opportunities and great pay.
Average salary: CHF 89,500 per year
Salary range: from CHF 48,000 – 142,000 per year
Job description: Given Switzerland’s global prominence in the financial and business sectors –– especially when considering the more prominent business firms in Zurich and Geneva –– and despite the damage to key global business markets throughout Europe and the world in 2020, companies throughout the country are searching for jobseekers with top-notch accounting skills. Because the demand is so high, and because of the high volume of wealthy clients, salaries for these roles are also extremely well-paid.
Average salary: CHF 84,000 per year
Salary range: from CHF 35,000 – 121,000 per year
Job description: Perhaps an unusual job title to see on this list, considering Switzerland’s famous impartiality during many of Europe’s conflicts, Military Officers are still considered part of the Swiss Armed Forces which is active in global peacekeeping missions. And the country needs professional soldiers to train and manage new recruits. These roles require strong leadership and communication skills, in addition to being quick on one’s feet. Because of the importance of these jobs, they are paid much more than you’d expect.
How to Find a High-Paying Job Opening in Switzerland?
1. Online Job Boards
Using an online job board is one of the most effective tools for sourcing a high-paying job in Switzerland. And there are plenty of options available for those looking to grow their career –– or start from the very beginning.
Some great online job boards in Switzerland include:
2. Recruitment Agencies
Sometimes, you need a bit of help getting your foot in the door when looking for a high-paying job. Recruitment agencies in Switzerland are readily available to assist job candidates while providing benefits like:
- Faster hiring. Recruitment agencies find candidates to match with available positions much faster than most people can do on their own.
- High-quality candidates. What’s more, the quality of the jobs that agencies source is typically higher than those found via word of mouth or by open calls. Jobseekers are pre-screened and interviewed by recruiters so that everyone’s time is treated valuably.
- Specialist recruitment knowledge. Recruitment agencies employ staff who are extremely knowledgeable about the ins and outs of the local job markets. They also have keen insights that are useful in matching the right candidate with the right role.
Some of the top recruitment agencies servicing all parts of Switzerland include:
3. Networking Events
Networking is a vital component of advancing your career. One single connection can potentially lead to a new, exciting position with a much higher salary. It’s all about who you know. Some of the benefits of attending networking events include:
- You can define your expectations. Attending networking events allows you to meet many like-minded people at one time. If you’ve never participated in an event before, they are a great place for introducing yourself and sharing your professional goals and ambitions in an honest and open environment.
- You get to make a great first impression. Grab as many business cards and shake as many hands as you can during a networking event so that when it comes time to reach out to new contacts, you’ll have made a great first impression and you’re that much likelier to land a job interview.
- They encourage you to get out of the house. Job searching involves a lot of rejection –– and it’s easy to feel defeated from behind a computer screen. Network events force you out of your comfort zone. And in doing so, people get to see the real you.
Find and Apply for the Highest-Paying Jobs in Switzerland!
There you have it! The highest-paying jobs in Switzerland right now. There are plenty of resources available to help you find a high-paying job of your own, wherever you live in Switzerland. Use these resources and tools to your advantage to help land the career of your dreams.