Is your company looking for a payroll services partner in Switzerland?  Does your recruitment agency require intermediary support for Swiss recruitment? Are you a contractor searching for an effective and trustworthy payroll partner for your new remit in Switzerland?

Payroll management and administration is complex in Switzerland. Data protection laws, payroll calculations dependent on multiple factors, taxation differences between the 26 cantons, Federal Government rules and hidden charges are just some of the issues to consider when selecting a payroll services provider. Here at Accurity, where we operate under 100% transparency: this brief guide is intended to help make the selection of a Swiss payroll provider safer, whether you are a Contractor, an Agency, or a Company.


Contractors: i
f you plan to work in Switzerland there are several important issues to consider when looking for a payroll service provider:

  • Cost
    • The fee charged by a payroll service provider is significant, but this basic price is not the only factor determining your overall payroll costs.
    • A low service fee does not correlate with a high service level. A glimpse into the airline world should affirm that.
    • And as with airlines, a low entry price often serves as the base-line price, with any (frequently required) additional services and customer support (for example work permits, professional endorsements, or assistance with accommodation) having to be paid for separately.
  • Reputation & Experience
    • It is a good idea to understand how long the provider has been in the payroll business and if can they provide references. Low barriers of online marketing, and recent technology advances mean that new providers are sometimes selling payroll services in Switzerland via dubious 3rd party providers.
    • Personnel leasing businesses must be licensed by SECO (Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs) to operate legally as an employment services provider in Switzerland.
    • Business sector experience can also be a key factor as certain industries operate their payroll services in specific ways, under collective employment agreements.
    • Does the payroll company have language competence and experience with the canton in which you will be living. In Switzerland this is important.
  • Service level & Retention
    • In the high-touch environment of contractor engagement, payroll companies increasingly claim to be 100% digital. However employment services continue to require fast and interactive personal contact via telephone or face-to-face sessions. This makes service level reputation an important factor: digitalisation should should not imply the replacement of personal contact by a webshop.
    • Retention rates can be “massaged” to give the impression a higher return. Find out exactly how these are calculated.
  • Salary & Payment 
    • A reputable employment services partner should be able to guarantee as a minimum that you will be paid on time every month on the agreed date and with all the correct legal & statutory payments deducted.
    • Do you or the client need to pay a deposit to facilitate the salary payment, or will the payroll provider only pay the salary once they have received funds from the client company?

Recruitment Agencies: if you are looking to recruit for the Swiss market, it is a requirement that you are SECO licensed. If this is not the case, you will need to work with an intermediary agency that is. Here are some key points to look out for when selecting an intermediary agent partner:

  • Commercial
    • Does the agency’s SECO license fully cover your Swiss business activities?
    • How do they charge for these services e.g. is it a percentage of the client commission or is it a flat fee, and are there any extra charges.
    • Is the intermediary process clearly described/transparent and does the agency provided an agile, personalised service with dedicated cover for intermediary business?
    • If a recruitment order is not successful, does your agency still have to pay a fee to the employment services provider in Switzerland, or is the service charged on a “No win, no fee” basis?
  • Business model
    • How long have they been established in this business in Switzerland and do they have experience in the sector you are recruiting in?
    • Does the agency offer a guarantee of GDPR compliance, confidentiality and non-competition?
    • What are the guaranteed terms when processing your business and making commission payments?

Corporate Clients: Swiss based companies may engage contractors or permanent employees through an unlicensed international recruiter as long as this is via a SECO-licensed intermediary.

Some of the areas to observe for the company are:

  • Engaging Permanent Employees
    • It is key to establish whether the employment services intermediary is SECO licensed and can therefore act represent the international recruiter.
    • Will the intermediary ensure all paperwork and transactions will be correctly documented (and auditable) in compliance with SECO and data privacy regulations.
    • Will the intermediary guarantee commission refund in the event the recruitment is unsuccessful under the terms agreed?
  • Engaging Contractors
    • Is the employment services company SECO licensed to carry out labour leasing.
    • What experience do they have in your specific sector?
    • What is their supplier model and what agreements would your company need to sign?
    • What support is offered to the contractor in addition to the basic payroll service?

Accurity GmbH has been providing employment services for its stakeholders for over 20 years. During this time, we have built an enviable reputation having worked successfully with hundreds of clients and agencies and literally thousands of contractors.

We work in a transparent way, meaning there are no hidden surprises for any of our stakeholders:

  • Our fees are all inclusive of all set up and ongoing support services. There are absolutely no hidden extras charged.
  • We pay contractor salaries on the agreed date on time each month, irrespective of whether we have received funds from the client or not.
  • Our retention rates are among the best in the industry and our team of experts carefully explains the revenue estimate to our partners to ensure full comprehension before work commences.
  • We operate a flat one-off fee for intermediary agency placement services and our  “no win – no fee” model is unique and revered by agents.

If you are looking for an employment services solution and would like to speak to one of our team of experts, don’t hesitate to contact us today to see how we can make Switzerland easy for you!