Taxes and payrolls: the peculiarities of the Swiss labour market

Taxes and payrolls: the peculiarities of the Swiss labour market

Each labour market has some peculiarities. It may be tricky for foreigners to understand fully the payment methods, the taxes and other benefits related. In TalentUp we are starting a series of different blog articles, one for each country. This article analyses the Swiss labour market.

Even if the national currency is the Swiss Franc (CHF), the whole article is in EUR to compare easily across countries and exchange rates.

General data about the Swiss labour market

Minimum wage25.73€/h25.62€/h
Payment basisMonthlyMonthly
PaymentMust be paid by the last working dayMust be paid by the 25th of each month
Maximum working hours a week40-44h45h
Maximum overtime hours 2h/day5h/week
Working hours compensationAt 125% regular pay rateAt 125% regular pay rate
Swiss minimum wage and maximum working hours disclosure. Data for January 2024. Source: and

Payroll taxes in Switzerland

Social security contributions are made by the employer and the employee and are used for funding unemployment, pension, maternity/paternity leave, and sickness or injury.

ContingenciesEmployer % – GenevaEmployer % – ZurichEmployee % – GenevaEmployee % – Zurich
Old Age, Survivors, Disability Insurance5.3%5.3%5.3%5.3%
Unemployment Insurance (maximum 153,072.22€) 1.1%1.1%1.1%1.1%
Supplementary Unemployment Insurance (over 153,072.22€) 0.5%0.17% -13.50%0.5%0.5%
Family Compensation Fund2.45%1% – 3%
Maternity Insurance0.043%0.043%
Early Childhood Contribution0.07%
Vocational training Fund32.02€0.1%
Occupational Accident Insurance (maximum 153,072.22€) 1% – 4%1% – 4%
Income Compensation0.225%
Total10.463% – 14.463% + 32.02€ per employee7.67% – 23%7.168%7.90% – 10.90%
Share of contingencies applied to the gross salary. Data source: and

Once contributions are paid, employees must pay an income tax that varies depending on their gross salaries. 

In Geneva, there are 17 different salary ranges with increasing income tax, from 8% to 19%.

Meanwhile, there are 13 salary ranges in Zurich with increasing income tax and a fixed part (only for single taxpayers). Reaching 13% plus 24,339.72€ for single taxpayers and only 13% for married taxpayers.

Contingencies from self-employees

As a self-employed person, you cover the full cost of social security contributions yourself. Depending on your income, your social security premiums equal between 5,196% and 9.65% of your income. You also pay an administrative fee for self-employed individuals equal to up to 5% of your social security contributions.

Example of net salary in Switzerland

As a reference, we use the average salary of a software engineer. In Switzerland, on average, software engineers earn annually 55,100€.

Gross salary (annually)55,100
Old Age, Survivors, Disability Insurance5.3%2,920.35.3%2,920.3
Unemployment Insurance 1.1%606.11.1%606,1
Family Compensation Fund0.17% -13.50%93.67 – 7,438.50.5%275.5
Maternity Insurance1% – 3%551 – 1,653
Early Childhood Contribution0% – 0.043%0 – 23.690% – 0.043%0 – 23.69
Vocational training Fund0% – 0.07%0 – 38.57
Occupational Accident Insurance 32.02€ or 0.1%32.02 – 55.1
Income Compensation0% – 4%0 – 2,2040% – 4%0 – 2,204
Total7.67% – 23% + 0€ – 32.02€4,226.17 – 12,705.027.168% – 10.90%3,949.57 – 6,005.9
From gross to net salary of a software engineer in Switzerland.

The employer contributes 4,226.17 – 12,705.02€ to social security and the employee 3,949.57 – 6,005.9€.

Unemployment regulation in Switzerland

The statutory notice periods are as follows:

Time workedNotice period
During probation period (from 1 to 3 months)7 days
Less than 1 year1 month
Between 1 and 10 years2 months
Over 10 years3 months
Notice periods in Swiss contracts.  Data source: and

In addition, the statutory severance payment is only applicable to employees of at least 50 years of age who have completed at least 20 years of employment and provided there is a shortfall in pension benefits.

Different kinds of leaves in Switzerland

Employees under 50 receive 4 weeks of holiday, and over 50 receive 5 weeks of holiday. There are 8 public holidays. Public holidays that fall on the weekend are usually lost.

Sick leave ranges from 3 weeks to nearly two years, depending of the time employed. It represents 80% of the salary.

There are 14 weeks of paid leave to provide care for a seriously ill or injured child.

Normally, three days to five days of bereavement leave are given in case of close relatives and one to three days in other cases.

Normally one to three days are given for wedding leave.

Maternity leave is paid at 80% of the pay rate (maximum of 202.44€/day) for 98 days. 

In Geneva, maternity leave can be up to 16 weeks.

Fathers have 10 days if paid paternity leave. There are no statutory laws on parental leave.

Other common Swiss benefits

Benefit% of companies with this benefit
Flexible Working Hours13.6
Work From Home13.6
Work-Life Balance10.0
CUtting Edge Technology7.3
Top 5 benefits offered in Swiss companies. Datasource: TalentUp’s database.

How to employ a Swiss worker

Companies need to be registered in the Commercial register before hiring in Switzerland. 
Some platforms (Papaya Global among them) offer the Employer of Record (EoR) service helping companies hire countries where they do not have any office.

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About Author

Èlia Adroher i Llorens

Content Writer. Èlia studied International Business Economics with a focus on digital marketing. She is also interested in learning about data analysis.