Swiss CV standards

A rule of thumb when we are seeking for a job is to take into account the standards of the country that we are targeting.

The same as with culture, the expectations on CV’s can differ a lot from a country to another, and not being aware of this can sadly move us from the list in a very fast – and I would dare to say – unfair way. Complying with the expectations will not only help you be part of the shortlist, but will also showcase how interested, curious and willing you are.

If you are seeking for a job in Switzerland, these are the musts for your CV:

  1. Summarise your personal details:
    • First and last name
    • Date and place of birth
    • Full address
    • email address
    • Telephone number
    • Nationality / Working permit
    • Extra: If you have a decent LinkedIn account, don’t hesitate to refer to it here too
  2. Include a personal statement: They encapsulate your skills, qualifications and career goals within a few sentences, and they make it easier for recruiters to start understanding what kind of person you are.
  3. Photo: As incredible as it sounds in other countries, recruiters in Switzerland are expecting to find a photo on your CV. Please make sure that tit has high resolution, that you look pleasant and natural and that it is the most actual possible.
  4. Professional experience: List your professional experience in a reverse chronological way – the most recent experiences first.
  5. Education: Let us know the name of your qualification(s) and the institution where you studied. The time frame is also important.
  6. Other experiences: like volunteering, military service, etc.
  7. Language skills: List the languages that you can speak and the level. Not lying is key in the whole CV, and your competitors tend to deceive on this point, a lot.
  8. IT skills: If you have a very long list of systems and programs, try to keep it simple and list the ones that are more relevant to the job that you are applying to.

Extra: I like to know about the hobbies and strengths that my candidates have, however not every recruiter is the same. Assess the type of company where you are filing your application: how traditional it is, what is its style like, how is the job description written (…) and make your own decision on whether to include this information or not.

Some other recommendations that I would make not only for Switzerland job seekers are the following:

  1. Adapt your CV according to the position advertised. Usually you need to refresh you CV for every new application.
  2. Try to stick to no more than 2 pages. Remember that your career is very, very important, but so is the time of the recruiter.
  3. The CV should be written on the language of the job description.
  4. Proofread it several times before sending it. A grammatical error will diminish your attention to details, usually quite important in a job.
  5. Send it in PDF – it really makes our lives easier.
  6. Name the file in a smart way.

Ready to rock’n roll 😉

Good luck with your job hunt!


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