Meet your Local Hero: your expert on international relocation and expat settling in

by Packimpex on 25 October 2021

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Switzerland remains an economic engine and an innovation hub, despite the pandemic. Swiss unemployment is low, and career opportunities are countless. What is the Swiss recipe for success? Two of the most decisive ones are the country’s location at the heart of Europe and its capacity for innovation. How can Swiss companies remain competitive in this high-performance environment, you may ask? The answer is simple: by recruiting skilled workers from abroad.

Why recruit specialists from abroad?

Mauro Cecchi
Sometimes, this outreach abroad takes place in a structured manner: it is common practice in some of Switzerland’s biggest industries, such as pharma or IT, to advertise jobs on international job boards. But even when jobs are not intentionally advertised abroad, the best applicant may, by chance, live outside of Switzerland. Would you or your company give up on recruiting the best possible person for the job just because they don’t live in Switzerland?

Probably not – and nor should you!

No matter which path leads to international recruitment – whether by intention or by coincidence – this kind of employment very often results in a relocation to the company location in Switzerland.

Challenges with international relocations

Hiring overseas talent is the norm for a lot of Swiss companies of all sizes. But managing the relocation process isn’t easy, especially for companies that don’t have a dedicated department.

To handle employee relocations, you need a lot of know-how on timing, items, and budgets involved. An international hire is a significant project for any company, and is a project that often comes with a hefty price tag. When you or your company invest that much, you’ll typically (and reasonably) expect your new employee to stay with your company for at least five years.

These are just a few of the things you’d need to keep in mind when embarking on an international relocation project all by yourself:

1. You’d have to do your research on international regulations, visa application, work permit timelines and compliance
2. You’d have to keep track of the budget for the move and settling-in costs
3. You’d have to be available to offer advice and support for all kinds of settling-in questions – which neighborhood should I move to? Which insurer should I get? Does that telco provider have reliable internet at that location? You will receive dozens of similar questions from all your new employees.

Oftentimes, you will find that relocation management is far more complex than initially estimated. While the paperwork and the legal issues are top concerns for everyone, it’s actually the nitty-gritty of the day-by-day issues that gets to most of the companies trying to hire internationally.

Moreover, it’s not just about bringing people to Switzerland. Despite its small size, Switzerland is a very diverse country, with significant differences between cantons when it comes to regulations, culture, and even language. It’s not enough to know the basics of Swiss law and culture. For successful relocations and long-term working relationship with your international new-hires, you need to go much more granular: you need local experience and expertise.

This is why professional help is always welcome. You don’t have to do this on your own. In fact, all things considered, it’s almost certainly faster, cheaper, and less stressful to work with a relocation professional.

Who can help when recruiting from abroad?

Packimpex has been offering relocation services for more than 45 years. We are the preferred relocation solutions provider in Switzerland for a very simple reason: we keep learning and adapting to the needs of our customers, whether our customer is a company, or we are working directly for the transferee themself.

For instance, when we speak of international employees, it is important to understand that at Packimpex we mean both the ‘classical’ kind of expats – such as bankers coming from New York or London to Zurich and Geneva – but we very much also mean the new generation of self-sufficient, digital-native professionals such as (to name just a few) independent web designers or product managers from somewhere like Berlin, Amsterdam or Brussels who will move to Basel, Lausanne or Bern to work in a boutique marketing agency or for a ski tour operator. Packimpex is very flexible in this regard – we have the right set-up to support all types of international new hires.

High-touch, high-tech solutions – but always with a human touch

Thomas MarksDifferent companies have different needs when it comes to how they handle relocation projects. Some prefer a hands-on approach and a tight relationship with their relocation consultant, while others prefer to do everything with the push of a button.

What’s your preference? Are you the high-tech type and prefer an online platform, or do you prefer everything to go through a “human” partner?

Whatever your preference or needs, at Packimpex you can have the best of both worlds. As our client, you will have access to Relox, our high-tech platform where you can manage every aspect of your relocation projects. You’ll also have access to your own personal adviser. Your Local Hero, as we like to call them. More on that below.

It’s never been easier to successfully move, accommodate and accustom employees

Our relocation specialists work hand-in-hand with your HR department to successfully move, accommodate and settle in your new employees. We will serve – depending on the individual wishes of your business – as a pure service provider, or as a partner that ties in closely with your own HR department.

From the actual move of your employees’ belongings and handling their paperwork, to helping them settle in and feel at home in their new neighborhood, Packimpex is your one-stop-shop for all your relocation needs.

Our “Local Heroes” aren’t just experienced relocation experts. They also know the best insurers to work with, the best neighbourhoods in each Swiss city, and even the coolest gyms and leisure clubs.

Packimpex: Throughout Switzerland and yet very local

Packimpex is a Swiss company that cultivates both Swiss-German and French-speaking Swiss culture. With 12 locations in Switzerland, we are certainly close to you, wherever you are.

The advantage of our very local, yet Switzerland-wide national structure is that we are situated close to the hearts of the cities and regions where we work, while in the background, supported by our headquarters, we have the necessary size and capability to be able to offer world-class customer apps, data security, and compliance. You get all of that good stuff AND we’re hyper local to wherever you are.

Meet your «Local Hero»: always right where you need them for all your international recruitment needs

Here are your Local Heroes – the relocation specialists you‘ll want to have on speed-dial.

In every city or region where we work, you will find a “Local Hero” who’s always there for you. Local Heroes are experts who not only know relocation inside-out, but also know their region and its local companies very well.

Our Local Heroes are happy to advise you on any kind of international employment or employee settlement project. No question is too unusual, no request too rare. Get in touch any time – our heroes are happy to be on duty.

Thomas Marks: +41 58 356 16 55

Account Manager Zurich region, Central Switzerland, and Eastern Switzerland 

Your “Local Hero” at Packimpex for the Zurich, Central, and Eastern regions is Thomas Marks.
Thomas has supported international and local companies as well as NGO’s with their relocation needs for almost 15 years.

Mauro Cecchi: +41 58 356 16 42

Account Manager Basel region 

Your “Local Hero” at Packimpex for the Basel region is Mauro Cecchi.
Mauro has supported international and local companies, as well as NGO’s with their relocation needs for over 10 years.

André Hirschi: +41 58 356 14 51

Account Manager Bern und Romandie 

Your “Local Hero” at Packimpex for the Bern and Romandie regions is André Hirschi.
André has supported international and local companies as well as NGO’s throughout Switzerland for over 10 years at Packimpex.